Google Beefs Up Online Security Using Cellphone SMS

Dennis Faas's picture

With many tech analysts predicting that cloud computing will be an important part of how companies conduct their future business, Google has intervened by clamping down on potential hackers and would-be identity thieves.

Second Password Code Sent via SMS, Cell Phone

Using simple passwords for an online account makes you prone to hackers, and this is especially true for corporate accounts.

In response to the call for greater security, Google has implemented an additional (and optional) security measure which requires users enter a random six-digit code after entering their password. The random 6-digit code comes to the user via SMS (Short Message Service) via the users' cell phone.

Right off the bat, adding a second device just to check email messages on the computer might dissuade some people. However, considering that having a two-step process means that hackers will need more than just a trial-and-error password attempt to access your private information, the small investment of time may be worth it.

SMS Password is Optional

Google is not forcing this policy on users. Instead, it will appear as an option that can be activated or deactivated, or if desired, users can even ask Google to remember that their identity has been verified on the device one time, and additional security codes will not be required (kind of like a "remember my password" option). (Source:

To make the two-part password / code transition that much smoother, Google has even created a free security application designed for Apple's iPhone, RIM's BlackBerry and, of course, their own mobile operating system, Android.

Added Security Brings Trust to Cloud

Google's objective in offering additional security features is to get more companies and agencies to feel comfortable with cloud computing. If people feel safer when storing their vital information on remote servers across the Internet, they will be more likely to buy into the new concept. (Source:

Interested home users will have to wait a bit before beefing up their security settings in this respect. Added protection will initially be offered to companies, government agencies and schools that rely on Google to run their email systems.

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