Google’s ‘Advanced Protection’ Is So Secure It Requires a Physical Key

Your move, Russia

October 18, 2017 9:00 am

As recent events have made clear, companies that do business on the web, even ones that should have layers of protection like Yahoo and Equifax, are all too vulnerable of being hacked.

In order to give targets like journalists, business leaders and political campaign teams extra heavy-duty security, Google is now offering the Advanced Protection Program to safeguard personal accounts.

As it currently stands, the program is reserved for true high-risk users, requiring them to carry two physical security keys — a Bluetooth key for phones and tablets and a USB key for computers.  The keys allow users to sign into their account and require Chrome to access all signed-in Google services.

Using the key is mandatory for the program, as is the exclusive use of all Google properties. “When you sign up for new apps or services, you are sometimes asked for access to your data, like your emails or documents,” Google explains. “Third-party apps that want access to Gmail or Drive will no longer have permission.”

The last piece of the security puzzle is that in the event you get locked out of your account, Advanced Protection requires so many steps to verify your identity that it will take a few days to restore access to your account. 

Think you’re important enough to apply? You can register for Advanced Protection here.

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