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Two Factor Authentication for iCloud

Apple has announced plans to introduce a two factor authentication system for its iCloud and other services.

Two factor authentication protects accounts from hackers and thieves by supplying a one time password to a device directly linked to an account. This way only the bearer of both the username and password, and the device linked can gain access to their accounts. It offers a more secure method of authentication than the flawed security questions which are often guessed or answers found with a simple Google search. Many websites and services still use this hit and miss system.

Single passwords have been proven to not be enough, especially for high profile users and users who have potentially sensitive information stored in their networks. More companies are employing a two factor authentication system to provide their users with a more secure and reliable service.

The two factor authentication service that Apple, similar to the service that Paypal and Google Apps/Mail currently offer users will provide a one time password to a phone linked to the iCloud or other service account. They will also provide a back up code in the case of the device being lost, stolen or damaged.

Apple will launch the service in the UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and USA to start.

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