Setup Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) at RCS

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SummarySetup multi-factor authentication for your RCS account
AuthorMaintained by Jen Davenport
HelpGet help with this article
StatusUp-to-date for the 2023-2024 school year.

2-step verification adds an extra layer of security to your Google Account, drastically reducing the chances of having the personal information in your account stolen. You sign in with something you know (your password) and something you have (a code sent to your phone). To break into an account with 2-Step Verification, bad guys would not only have to know your username and password, they'd also have to get your phone.

Example Usage

  1. Log into your RCS Google Account using your RCS username and password
  2. Respond to the MFA prompt to gain access to your account typically by doing one of these two steps
    • Enter a 6-digit code that will be sent to you via Google’s mobile app called Google Authenticator (available on iOS and Android) or through text and voice call
    • Respond to a prompt on your mobile device if you have any Google apps installed and logged-in to your RCS Google Account

You can choose to trust your computer when you enter the code. This means you won't be asked for a code again when you sign in from this computer. If you sign in from another computer, however, you’ll be asked for a new code.

Enable 2-Step Account Verification

Enroll your account

  1. Review the Google 2-step verification features and then...
  2. Get started with Google 2-step verification by enrolling now. Please go through all of the setup steps from Google!
  3. Riverdale recommends setting up 2-step verification with Google Prompts or an authenticator app like Google Authenticator (iOS, Android) and not SMS
    • By default during the set-up process, you will be asked for a phone number
    • Instead of entering your phone number, click Choose another option
    • Set up Google Prompts or Google Authenticator as your primary authentication option
    • You can always add/remove/change these later!

Google Authenticator App

If you set up 2-Step Verification, you can use the Google Authenticator app to receive codes. You can still receive codes without internet connection or mobile service. Click Here.

Get Backup Codes

If you don't have access to your primary or backup phones, you can sign in with a backup code. To get your backup codes,

  1. Go to your 2-Step Verification settings page.
  2. Click on Show/Generate codes.
  3. Store this code in a secure location, such as your home safe or a safety deposit box.

Set up a backup phone

If your primary phone is ever unavailable Google can send a code to a backup line, like your home or work phone or even a family member's phone. To set one up:

  1. Go to your Google 2-Step Verification settings page
  2. Click on Add a phone number in the Backup phones section

Creating application specific password for Google 2-step verification

Once you have done the 2-step verification setup, and using Gmail on Outlook or on iOS devices, you will get errors saying “Wrong password”. All you need to do is, create one time Application specific password, and use it to setup your Gmail account on iOS or other mail clients you are using. Application-specific password required..

  • POP and IMAP email clients such as Outlook, Mail and Thunderbird
  • Gmail and Google Calendar on smartphones
  • ActiveSync for Windows Mobile and iPhone

Using apps with 2-Step Verification Video

What could go wrong?

Common questions about 2-Step verification

Can I do 2-step authentication with my personal Gmail account too?

Yes! We encourage you to do so right away. The Google Authenticator app can be used for many accounts, not just Google ones. LastPass 2-factor authentication can use the Google Authenticator app, as an example.

When do I need to enter a verification code? Do I need to enter the code every time I sign in?

You need to enter a new code every 30 days or after deleting your web browser's cookies. On the sign in page, click the option to "Remember verification for your computer" on your computer, and you won't have to re-enter your code for 30 days. Do not select this option for a public computer, such as a shared computer in an Internet cafe. The verification code is used only to sign in to your Google Apps account and not any other of our company's applications.

Will my password change?

No, your password stays the same while you are enrolling in 2FA.

What if I don't have my mobile phone when I need to sign in or I have trouble with the codes?

During the setup process, you will receive codes that you can write down and use when you don't have your phone. Otherwise, you can contact RCS Tech Support who can temporarily disable 2-Step Verification.

I just enrolled in 2-Step Verification, and now I can't access email on my phone...

After you enroll in 2-Step Verification, for any mobile devices or desktop applications that stop accessing Google (including IMAP email clients), create an application-specific password and enter it into the device/application instead of your normal password. This is a one-time process, Application-specific passwords.

Using apps with 2-Step Verification