2-Step Verification is an optional security feature in FreeAgent that makes your FreeAgent account even more secure. This article explains how 2-Step Verification works and what you need to do to enable it in your FreeAgent account.
How 2-Step Verification works
2-Step Verification (which is also sometimes known as 2-Factor Authentication or 2FA) is a security measure that’s offered by many online banking services, as well as digital platforms such as Google, Twitter and YouTube.
In FreeAgent, 2-Step Verification works in conjunction with a smartphone authentication app to prompt you to enter a randomly generated verification code - in addition to your regular login credentials - every time you want to access your FreeAgent account.
If you choose to enable 2-Step Verification, you can be confident that your FreeAgent account will remain protected if your login credentials ever fall into the wrong hands.
Setting up 2-Step Verification
Before you get started
Before you begin the process of enabling 2-Step Verification, you should download an authentication app on your smartphone that will allow you to generate the verification codes you’ll need to log into FreeAgent. Some popular apps that do this are:
Enabling 2-Step Verification
Once you’ve downloaded an authentication app, log into FreeAgent as normal and navigate to the ‘Settings’ area from the drop-down menu that’s displayed against your name in the top right-hand corner of the screen.
If you have level 7 or 8 access to FreeAgent, select ‘Users’ and then choose your own name from the list (you’ll only be able to enable 2-Step Verification for your own user profile). If you have a lower level of access, select ‘My details’ from the ‘Settings’ area instead.
Scroll down to the ‘2-Step Verification’ area of your user profile and select ‘Enable 2-Step Verification’.
Use the authentication app on your smartphone to scan the QR code that appears in the pop-up box. The app will then generate a 6-digit code, which you should enter in the text box and then select ‘Confirm’. This will enable 2-Step Verification in your FreeAgent account - you do not need to select ‘Save changes’ to complete the process.
Before you navigate away from the 2-Step Verification area, it’s a good idea to copy the set of recovery codes displayed beneath the enable/disable button and then save them in a secure location (e.g. a LastPass vault). There’s more information about recovery codes and how to use them below.
Using 2-Step Verification
Logging into FreeAgent
Having completed this process, you will now need to use your authentication app to generate a code each time you log into FreeAgent from a desktop or mobile browser, or from the FreeAgent Mobile app on an iOS or Android device. After providing your usual login credentials, enter your verification code in the 2-Step Verification login page to access your FreeAgent account.
If you ever find yourself separated from your phone and unable to access your authentication app, your recovery codes provide you with another way to log into your FreeAgent account. Simply select ‘I want to use a recovery code’ from the 2-Step Verification login page, then retrieve your recovery codes from their secure location and type one of them into the box.
Each of your 10 recovery codes can only be used once. If you need to generate a fresh set of recovery codes, just select ‘Regenerate recovery codes’ in the 2-Step Verification area of your user profile. Please be aware that when you do this, all your previous recovery codes - including those you’ve not yet used - will become invalid, so remember to save your new codes to your secure location.
Disabling 2-Step Verification
If, at any time, you want to disable 2-Step Verification, simply log into your account as normal (either using a verification code or a recovery code), then navigate to 'Settings' and 'Users' if you’re a level 7 or 8 user and select your name from the list of users. Alternatively, if you have a lower level of access to FreeAgent, navigate to 'Settings' and 'My details'.
From the ‘Edit user details page’, scroll down to the 2-Step Verification area and select ‘Disable 2-Step Verification’.>
Once you have done this you will be able to log into your FreeAgent account on a desktop or mobile browser or via the FreeAgent Mobile app with only your email address and password.