Data breaches have become recurrent in the past years due to the proliferation of cutting-edge technologies that equip cybercriminals to access and hack corporate security systems. Password protection alone does not suffice when it comes to securing your applications and online accounts.
Business, both large-scale and small-scale, fall prey to data leaks and security infringements. In a bid to establish a robust security system and add an additional step to the login process, software engineers developed two-factor authentication systems (2FA) that prevent internet fraudsters from accessing your personal information even if they manage to hack your passwords.
Absence of a concrete end-to-end encryption mechanism can help dubious characters to intercept the one-time passwords that are sent to your device in the event of a sign in. 2FA add that extra layer of protection and are better in terms of security and reliability.
There are several 2FA apps available in the market, but the most sough-after ones are Authy and Google Authenticator. They generate single-use, on-time verification codes to ascertain identity of the account owner. Though both the apps serve a similar purpose, they differ in terms of functionality.
Google Authenticator necessitates manual transfer of codes if you wish to set it up on another device. On the contrary, Authy connects your code to your Authy account, allowing you to see your codes and log in on any device.
What Is Authy?
Authy is a two-factor authentication app that supports multiple devices. It acts as a barrier between your device and hackers by guarding access to your system with a one-time password and syncing it with the device or service that you are trying to access.
Besides sending OTP to your system, Authy is also responsible for generating soft tokens or TOTPs – Time based On-time Passwords to your mobile or desktop. A unique feature of these one-time passwords is that they do not necessitate internet connectivity. Authy’s push authentication solution provides all-round protection to your account.
What Is Google Authenticator?
This iOS and Android based dual factor authentication app has been deployed by several organisations. Download and activate the Google Authenticator app on your device. Take a screen shot of the QR (Quick Response) code that gets generated, to sync your device to the app. Once this is done, Google Authenticator will generate codes on the app to gain access to your online account.
Authy Vs Google Authenticator: Features
Both the two-factor authentication tools provide advanced security of online accounts. Twilio’s Authy guarantees security across several devices with its multiple-device platform support. Similarly, Google Authenticator’s seamless application is the perfect fit for those seeking a simple and easy-to-use 2FA tool.
1. Backups and Synchronisation
With Authy, you can sync your two-factor authentication account tokens across several devices, including PCs, tablets, and mobile phones, and backup data. Authy’s backup feature, that allows encrypted backup accounts to be recovered from the server, is one of the best functions of the app. You need to activate the multi-device option in the Authy authenticator app to ensure that you do not lose the Authy tokens in case you misplace/lose your device.
Although users can move their accounts to a new device using Google Authenticator, this requires the old device to be in operation. This is because, unlike Authy, the Google authenticator app does not encrypt server backups.
To refrain cybercriminals from accessing your app, it is essential that your two-factor authentical tool is password or pin protected. Authy protects data against unwanted use with a biometric authentication system and PIN. This means that the tokens generated by the app won’t be accessible to anyone without your Authy passcode or pin. Authy comes with a solid encryption system that safeguards your data from hackers. Furthermore, cloud-based backups allow users to easily and safely access their credentials on another device in the event that they misplace their original device.
On the interim, Google Authenticator lacks this crucial security element. The lack of a passcode or biometric sign-in alternative will endanger the security of your device in case your device is stolen or misplaced.
3. Multi-device Support
Using the Authy authentication software, you may synchronize your accounts on several devices. Authy is compatible with all operating systems, including iOS, Android, Mac, Linux, and Windows. Additionally, both desktop and mobile devices may effectively use this authenticator app. That being said, as Google Authenticator is designed and developed exclusively for mobile devices, the same cannot be said. The two operating systems that work with Google Authenticator are iOS and Android