A password is not enough to protect your personal information – a second level of security is needed to block thieves from hacking your email or social media accounts. In the cyber world, you’re a target.

“Your Twitter, LinkedIn account, Facebook, your email accounts – that’s where the bad guys are going because they follow where the most people are, so they are trying to hack you by getting into those systems,” said Kristin Judge, National Cyber Security Alliance.

Step 1, like this Google email account, is your password, but now, two-step authentication goes beyond just a password to make sure it’s really you and not just someone with your password.

This public service message is the latest push by the National Cyber Security Alliance, which held a conference in Chicago on Friday.

“Two-step protection is out there, consumers don’t know about it. Google has been doing it since 2011, what good is it? Consumers really need to understand it, they need that extra security,” said Steve Bernas, president and CEO, Better Business Bureau of Chicago and Northern Illinois.

“The message today is to add an extra layer of protection to your online accounts,” said Judge.

You can add two-step authentication on online accounts like Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo! Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.

On Facebook, you start by going to “security settings” and down to “login approvals.” You’ll put in your phone number, click on the box to require a security code. That code will be texted to your phone, along with a password, you’ll need that code to log-on to your Facebook account. Kristin Judge with the Security Alliance uses two-point authentication on Gmail.

“It’s going to say to me, enter the code that comes to your phone. I didn’t ask it to send me the code, it just knows,” Judge said.

Again, you input the code as a second security step. This isn’t well-known, yet, but Chicagoans are learning.

“I’m going to tell everybody now, that it’s something need to look into and start doing it for their personal protection,” said Tony Quintana, a private investigator.

You don’t have to do two-step authentication repeatedly on devices that you use all the time, like your phone and iPad. But if a criminal somewhere tried to log on to your computer, they couldn’t – they would need a text message with the second step

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