Google Authenticator is a useful app for keeping track of your two-factor authentication (2FA) keys, but it’s by no means unique. If you feel it’s missing a few key features or you want something more open-source, there are other validators out there that should suit your needs.
Let’s take a look at some Google Authenticator alternatives and why you might want an alternative to start with.
Why replace Google Authenticator?
Google has managed to foray into areas like social media and games, with the latter scoring less than excellent in our Google Stadia review. On the other hand, Google Authenticator has over 10 million downloads to date, making it one of the most popular 2FA authenticators for Android.
Although it’s popular, it’s not perfect. Google Authenticator does not ask you to verify your identity when you open the app. It also doesn’t hide codes when you open the app: every code is visible when you start using it. This is dangerous if someone gets hold of your unlocked phone, as they can mess up your code with no problem.
Google Authenticator also doesn’t have any phone backup or transfer feature. You can tell this is a problem by looking through some of the negative reviews for the app.
Some people lost their phones and got locked out of their accounts. Others wanted to move the authenticator to a new phone, but they found that Google Authenticator doesn’t support the feature.
As you can see, there are plenty of reasons to look for a Google Authenticator alternative. So let’s break down five of the best and how they improve according to Google’s formula.
Authy has positioned itself as the leading Google Authenticator competitor. Right off the bat, it offers a backup of all your saved accounts, in case you have to erase your phone or change it. It does this by encrypting information and storing it in the cloud.
Authy also differentiates itself by offering a desktop app, as well as a smartphone version. This means you don’t need to be constantly tied to your phone to find the code; you can get your code directly from the desktop instead. This is even more useful if you don’t have a smartphone or tablet.
It provides passcode protection, so no one can accidentally access your code. Therefore, if someone gets hold of your unlocked phone, they still have the app’s passcode protection to break in before they can see your 2FA code.
Blurring any screenshots taken means that Authy can prevent malicious actors from taking pictures of your code. This may seem like overkill, but we’ve covered ways to protect yourself against keyloggers, malicious software that can take screenshots of your screen to read your data.
Authy describes its aim as finding a solution to “a complex problem — killing the password.” Whether that will happen or not, no one knows. However, in the case of Authy and Google Authenticator, Authy is clearly the winner.
Download: Authy for Android | iOS (Free)
2. HENNGE OTP
HENNGE OTP also provides users with passcode protection to prevent common tracking The application is compatible with all popular services — Google, Facebook, Amazon Web Services, Dropbox, Evernote and WordPress .
The only limitation of this app is that it is only available for iOS, so Android users are out of luck. If you are an iOS user and want something simple without a lot of bells and whistles, you should try this app for yourself.
Download: HENNGE OTP for iOS (Free)
3. Audio Login Authenticator
If you want to try something a little more unique, why not sign in with sound? No more typing annoying codes; just your phone makes a noise and you’re done.
As is clear from the name of the app, it relies on audio to generate one-time codes. It takes a bit of initial setup; you need the app on your phone and a browser extension (Chrome, Firefox or Opera). Your PC should also have a microphone (we’re dealing with audio, remember?).
When you want to sign in, you point your phone at your PC microphone and tap the account on the smartphone screen you want to access. The app will play a short ringtone, transmitting a temporary code to the browser extension. This pre-populates the site you’re trying to log into with the code.
Thus, this eliminates the need to quickly enter the 2FA code within a deadline. If you’re a slow typist and need something more comfortable than entering a six-digit code, you can find this information with Audio Sign In.
Download: Audio Login Authenticator for Android | iOS (Free)
If you’re a privacy advocate, you won’t want to touch any 2FA token generator that isn’t open source. Luckily, there are apps that respect your privacy and use an open source facility, so you can rest assured that companies don’t collect your data.
FreeOTP was developed by Red Hat, an open source developer that appeared in 1993. You can quickly add a generator using a QR code scanner or enter your details manually. The application is lightweight and simple, making FreeOTP a great choice if you want a token generator you can trust and nothing more.
Download: FreeOTP for Android | iOS (Free)
If you like the idea of an open source token generator, but you don’t like the lack of features in FreeOTP, try OTP instead. It keeps the trusty open source base but adds a bunch of useful features on top.
For example, andOTP can back up your code generator on a server, with different levels of encryption available. You can change the theme if you are a lover of dark mode. You can lock into OTP with a password or PIN, meaning someone picking up your phone doesn’t have access to all of your codes without being challenged.
Finally, the app is appropriately named “panic trigger”. If you think your phone is compromised, you can submit that app to trigger a panic attack. You can choose what the application does with this trigger; it can delete any accounts, reset apps to default settings, or both.
Unfortunately, at the time of writing, andOTP is only available for Android. Therefore, iOS users who want an open source solution can stick with FreeOTP for the time being.
Download: andOTP for Android (Free)
Choose Powerful Alternatives to Google
Google Authenticator has a huge number of downloads, but it’s not the best. If you’re looking for open source, backup, and password-secured app access, you’ll have better luck with the best Google Authenticator alternatives available.
What is the difference between Two-Factor Authentication and Two-Step Verification?
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https://www.makeuseof.com/tag/5-best-alternatives-google-authenticator/ The 5 Best Alternatives to Google Authenticator