Google Advanced Protection

This program is a free service from Google to help secure your account with physical security keys. These keys are required to be connected to your device to sign into it and you are required to purchase two security keys. Once authenticated you can choose to remember the device and I have not needed to use these security keys on my primary devices since I initially set them up. The keys can also be used on a variety of other services.

The security keys protect your account by requiring the physical keys to be connected before allowing you to sign in. Even if an attacker has your username and password, they would still require one of your security keys. This is more secure than SMS 2-factor as your number could be taken over or intercepted. Below are the basic steps of connecting to your Google account through Chrome.

 

Steps

  1. Enter your username.
  2. Enter your password.
  3. Connect the security key to your device and touch the button if equipped.
    1. Verify if you want to remember this device.
  4. You are now signed in.

 

Disadvantages

  • You must use Google Chrome on Windows. I don’t find this to be a big deal but if you are used to Internet Explorer or FireFox it could be an issue.
  • You are required to have two keys. One wireless key which is intended for your daily use and both keys will cost about 40 to 50 USD. See links below for the two I use.

 

Links

Feitian MultiPass FIDO Security Key

Feitian ePass NFC U2F Security Key

Google Advanced Protection