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How to Enable Apple’s Two-Factor Authentication in macOS Catalina

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Two-factor authentication is an extra layer of security used to make sure that folks trying to gain access to an online account are really who they say they are. First, a user will enter their username and a password. Then, instead of immediately gaining access, they will be required to provide another piece of information. 

With that in mind, note that two-factor authentication is an extra layer of security for your Apple ID designed to ensure that you’re the only person who can access your account, even if someone knows your password.

Here are the steps to take to enable Two-Factor Authentication:

  • Choose Apple menu  > System Preferences
  • Click “Apple ID”
  • Click “Password & Security” under your name.  
  • Click “Turn On Two-Factor Authentication”

Some Apple IDs created in iOS 10.3 or macOS 10.12.4 and later are protected with two-factor authentication by default. In this case, you will see that two-factor authentication is already turned on.

If your account isn’t eligible for two-factor authentication, you can still use two-step verification to protect your information. Two-step verification is an older security method that is available to users who don’t have Apple devices, can’t update their devices, or are otherwise ineligible for two-factor authentication. To do so, launch Safari and click this link: “Set up two-step verification now.”

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Dennis Sellers
the authorDennis Sellers
Contributing Editor
Dennis has over 40 years of journalism experience and has written hundreds of articles. For the past 20-plus years, he's been an online journalist, covering mainly Apple Inc. He's written for MacCentral, MacWorld, MacMinute, Macsimum News, Apple Daily Report, and is now contributing editor at Apple World Today.

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