How to Enable Two-Factor Authentication on Apple devices

If you are someone who keeps their personal data stored on iCloud, knowing that there’s only a single password keeping away anyone from accessing it can make you agitated. That’s why you should Enable Two-Factor Authentication on your devices to add an extra layer of security. Also known as 2FA, it ensures that only you can access your account even if someone knows your password. Here’s how it works,

You can use “Two-factor authentication” with iPhone, iPad running iOS 9 or later, Mac with macOS El Capitan (OS X El Capitan) or later, iTunes 12.3 or later and Apple watch with watchOS 2 or later.

Once 2FA is enabled, your account can be accessed only from devices you trust. If you want to sign in, with your new device, you will need to enter a six-digit verification code which is automatically displayed on the device you trust, along with your password. By doing so, you verify that you trust this new device and after which you won’t be asked to enter verification code again unless you sign out.

How to Enable Two-factor authentication

Before you set up Two-factor authentication, if you are using “Two-step verification” you’ll need to turn it Off, you can do this by –

  1. Going to appleid.apple.com
  2. Enter your Apple ID and Password 
  3. On the right side of Security, click Edit
  4. Click on Turn off Two-step verification

Now to set up Two-factor authentication, if you are setting up a new iPhone or iPad or just updated your existing device to iOS 9 or later, you will see these screens on setup. Tap Continue -> select your Country -> Enter a valid phone number

2FA on iPhone

Once verified, Two-factor authentication will be enabled on this device. You will now receive the verification code on this device when you sign in to any new iPhone, iPad or Mac with your same Apple ID.

If you didn’t enable Two-factor authentication in the above case, you can still set it up from the device you are already using –
For devices with iOS 10.3 or later

  1. Open Settings > (Your Name) > Password & Security
  2. Tap on Turn on Two-Factor Authentication
  3. Next, Tap on Continue

For devices with iOS 10.2 or earlier

  1. Open Settings > iCloud
  2. Tap on Apple ID > Password & Security
  3. Next, Tap on Turn on Two-Factor Authentication
  4. Tap Continue

Next, enter and verify your phone number and Two-factor authentication will be enabled.

Enabling Two-factor authentication on Mac

  1. Open System Preferences > iCloud > Account details
  2. Click on Security tab
  3. Click on Set Up Two-Factor Authentication

2FA on Mac

Hereafter, signing in, to a new device will require your password and your trusted device, which will automatically generate a six-digit verification code. You can also generate the code at any time, just simply follow these steps –
For iOS 10.3 or later

  1. Open Settings > (Your Name) > Password & Security
  2. Tap on Get Verification Code

For iOS 10.2 or earlier

  1. Open Settings > iCloud
  2. Tap on Apple ID > Password & Security
  3. Tap on Get Verification Code

NOTE: Always keep your trusted phone number(s) up to date.