Use Two-Factor Authentication with Apple ID and iCloud

Secure your account against wholesale hijacking

Apple’s two-factor authentication for Apple ID lets you secure access to your accounts with a password plus something extra that you have under your control. In this chapter, you learn how to set up two-factor authentication, how to secure your extra pieces against discovery or loss, and how to reset an account.

Dancing a Two-Step

Note: Apple Stepped Back from Two-Step

Turn On Two-Factor Authentication

Enable Two-Factor

Figure 1: The process starts with entering a phone number.
Figure 2: iCloud settings show that two-factor authentication has been enabled.

Disable Two-Factor

Log In with Two-Factor Authentication

Figure 3: Browsers can be trusted just like iOS devices and Macs.
Figure 4: To avoid unwanted logins, you’re shown a geographic alert. It might not be that accurate — I’m many miles from McChord Air Force Base.
Figure 5: You can opt to use a phone number instead of a trusted device.

Add a Trusted Phone Number

Figure 6: Trusted phone numbers can be managed in several places, including macOS.

Manage Your Notification Email

Logins at Other Sites

Figure 7: I can show you this password because I immediately revoked it.

Remove a Trusted Device or Phone Number

Remove a Trusted Device

Figure 8: All trusted devices are listed wherever you can log in to examine the details of your Apple ID account.

Remove a Trusted Phone Number

Recovering Account and Access

Reset Your Password with a Trusted Device

Figure 9: You can reset your Apple ID password via a logged-in iOS device.

Recover via Find My iPhone with a Phone Number

Use a Recovery Key in Limited Cases

Lost All Trusted Devices

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