It’s a well-known fact that Microsoft develops apps software and hardware that is best in their usage terms. Be it Microsoft Skype or recently acquired web platform for professionals ie LinkedIn.
One of a less known piece of utility is Microsoft Authenticator and in this post, we are going to go through it in full detail and would guide you on how to use it on regular purpose.
Deep dive into Microsoft Ecosystem if you like their software and hardware.
What is Microsoft Authenticator?
Microsoft Authenticator would allow you to login into your Microsoft account without any password from your side. Hows it has done?
Well, Microsoft would use technologies like fingerprint scanners and face recognization techniques in order to make you login into your account.
Extra Security with 2- Step verification
Apart from the quick login feature that Microsoft Authenticator provides, if you store sensitive data in your account then you can activate 2 step verification in order to login into your account.
How does it work?
In addition with your Facial recognition, PIN or fingerprint scan it requires you to put an extra password before you can successfully login to your Microsoft Account.
Download The Authenticator Now!
If you are on Mobile you can directly download the App from your respective smartphone. It’s available for both Android and iOS devices.
Or if you are on your Laptop or PC go to this link and get a link right into your smartphone.
Requirements for iPhone
Requires iOS 9.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.
English, Arabic, Basque, Bulgarian, Catalan, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Estonian, Finnish, French, Galician, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Kazakh, Korean, Latvian, Lithuanian, Malay, Norwegian Bokmål, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Simplified Chinese, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Traditional Chinese, Turkish, Ukrainian, Vietnamese
Is Microsoft Authenticator limited to MS Account?
Absolutely No! You can add multiple accounts in Microsoft Authenticator apart from the company’s Apps such as Skype, One Drive, and Outlook.
You can save your Twitter, Facebook Passwords too and thus make your account more secure than before.
Why Authenticator is Necessary?
We all know that Google also has its own Authenticator but mostly works like a charm with its services only. In this modern age where your online privacy has now much concern more than ever.
You need to be a step ahead and keep your private files or social accounts secure so that no other person can steal your identity and can create havoc or misuse the data of yours.
Why two- factor Authentications and Apps like Google Authenticator and Microsoft Authenticator are a Big Deal?
As technology is advancing at a much greater pace, hackers have developed more sophisticated ways to compromise data and passwords. The only nearby solution is to generate random tokens which expire within 1 min to 10 minutes to login into your social accounts or any desktop account.
Even the companies provide security chips to their employees to work upon their official laptop. These keys/chips generate random OTP type PIN that has to be entered within a given time frame, after that it’s expired. Few companies also put a threshold limit.
For example, if you enter the one-time token PIN incorrect for say 3 times, your laptop would be locked and you might need to go to Company’s IT Office to unlock it back.
Thus using this App you won’t need to remember any password as the password is created on the go when you require the Application.
How to setup Microsoft Authenticator for your Microsoft account?
- Log in with your existing Microsoft account credentials in the Microsoft Authenticator app which you downloaded from above link.
- When you open the app for the first time ,the new page would appear simply select “Personal account” to log into your Microsoft account.
- After a successful login, you have to authenticate the sign in with a code. You can have it send via text, email, or another method.
- Once you input the code, the app would be linked to your Microsoft account and you use it for no-password sign-ins. Next time you log in, simply enter your username and then input the code generated by the app.
How to setup Microsoft Authenticator for non-Microsoft accounts?
- Open the App.
- Now click on the three dot menu button in the Microsoft Authenticator app.
- Select the Add account option.
- Then select the Other account option.
- Now go back to the website where it should ask you if you want two-factor authentication via text and email or with an application.
- Select the application option.
- You will see a QR code on your screen or a six digit code. Use the Microsoft Authenticator app to scan the QR code.
- The site might give you a code to enter instead of a QR code. If that is the case then Go back into the app and tap the “Or Enter Code Manually” option on the bottom of the page. Give your account a name first so you know which one it is and enter the code beneath it.
Which App do you use for your 2-step protection?
- Microsoft Authenticator
- Google’s Authentication App
- Authy 2- Factor Authentication
Alternatives for Microsoft Authenticator
Editor’s Alternative Pick
I would definitely choose Authy as alternative for Microsoft Authenticator.
Some features of Authy
- Use TouchID, PIN protection and passwords to protect access to your 2FA tokens.
- Encrypt your 2FA data and backup to our cloud, without storing passwords with us.
- Avoid SMS and voice security issues by generating 2FA tokens directly on the device.
- Use backup feature incase you lose your phone. They encrypt your data, and only decrypt on the devices using a password only you know. (and must not forget!).
Do Tell us in the comments if you use any other App. We would surely cover it in our next Apps roundup. Note that Even with 2-step authentication your account would not be fully protected BUT it would be more secure than having only 1 simple combination of password for your social and business accounts.