Google Authenticator, the company’s two-factor authentication (2FA) app, has been updated for iOS and Android smartphones. The latest update allows users back up their one-time passwords (OTP) to their Google account. These OTPs can easily be synced to another device while switching to a different device. The latest Google Authenticator update on Android allows users to access their two-factor authentication (2FA) codes on other devices logged in with the same Google account. Until now, one-time codes on Authenticator were only stored on a single device, restricting users from signing in to a service if they did not have their primary device.
The updates to Google Authenticator were detailed by Google in a post on the Google Security blog. The new update for Google Authenticator on iOS and Android adds the ability to backup and sync OTPs across devices logged into the same Google account.
The search giant states that the latest update will help users access OTPs on other devices. Until now, one-time codes on Authenticator were securely stored on a single device, and hence, users would face issues signing in to a service that was set up to use 2FA, if that device was lost, stolen, or damaged.
Installing the latest update will make it easy and hassle-free to access the service by using Google Authenticator 2FA across devices, according to Google. In order to access the new sync functionality, users simply need to download and install the latest version of Google Authenticator and follow the prompts on their phone’s screen to start syncing OTPs securely with their Google account.
The Google Authenticator app was launched in 2010 as an alternative to SMS-based one-time passcodes, which are considerably less secure and unreliable compared to 2FA apps. It is used to generate 2FA for various Google apps and services. Once set up, the app displays six to eight-digits-long unique codes that can be used to log into an account.