The two-factor authentication code (2FA) acts as a security layer to protect your login credentials from hackers. It’s like a watchful guard. This is very useful if your password is compromised, because the hacker will not have the 2FA code. One popular 2FA code generator is Authy which offers several advanced features that are not present in applications such as Microsoft Authenticator. But what happens if the Authy code doesn’t work when you need it most?
Therefore, you cannot log in and access your account. It’s really ironic While the problem looks serious, there are several ways to fix it. Without further ado, we have to examine several solutions that will help you get your security back on track.
Let’s get started.
1. Check Authy Account Details
Open the application and tap the Settings icon at the top shaped like a gear. The screenshots below are from Authy for iPhone, and the layout might be different if you are using an Android phone.
You will see your Authy account ID, email ID, and cellphone number that you used to create this account under the My Account tab. Everything looks good? The telephone number used to set the 2FA code must match the telephone number used to register your Authy account. You can request a change in phone number if you use another number to scan the account.
2. Use a Backup Code
Every application, site, or service that offers a two-factor authentication feature provides a backup code at the time of creation. You should record it in a safe place, preferably offline or online with strong encryption, in an emergency. Normally, a backup code is displayed after you scan the QR code with the Authy application. Try one of the backup codes to enter until you can fix the Authy code that isn’t working.
3. Synchronize the Time
Time is very important in the case of 2-factor authentication applications such as Authy. See how a new code / token is generated every 30 seconds? Time plays an important role here, and your smartphone time must be synchronized with official time.
Do you synchronize time manually, don’t want to use the internet to set it up, or travel to a different time zone? You need to set the correct time under Settings> Additional settings> Date & time.
Turn on Automatic Date & time and Automatic time zone. The location and options may vary based on the device you are using.
Google recently updated the Authenticator application with options to synchronize automatically and improve the time settings on your smartphone. Maybe, Authy will follow him.
4. Clean Cache and Data
To be safe, you must clear cache and data from the Authy application and start fresh. This method will only work for Android users because there is no way to clear the cache on the iPhone and iPad.
Step 1: Go to Settings> Applications> Manage applications and search for Authy. Choose it.
Step 2: Tap on Clear data at the bottom of the screen and select the Delete all data and Clear cache options.
5. Using Multi-Device Options
Well, this only applies to those who use multi-device settings where Authy is installed on more than one smartphone. Some users like to have multiple Authy accounts to separate their work and personal life.
Ideally, you should see the same Authy ID on all devices so the code is synchronized correctly. If you see a different ID, your primary ID (Authy account) is the one that also carries your current phone number. You can check it as shown in point 1 above.
Step 1: For a 2FA code that doesn’t work on your main Authy account, log in to the 2FA account’s website (for example, Facebook) and use the 2FA code on another or second device to enter. You can also use a backup code. After that, deactivate the 2FA code option.
Step 2: Open your main Authy account on the smartphone and delete all devices except those that say This device is under Settings> Device.
Step 3: Now you will add the 2FA account again as you did before to make sure everything is synchronized.
Step 4: Activate the Multi-device option if it is not already activated, allow synchronization of the newly added account, then delete and reinstall Authy on your main device.
The 2FA code must be synchronized on both devices now, it must show the same code on both devices at the same time, and both must work for you to enter.
In the Code We Trust
Authy is an amazing 2FA application that works on many platforms, is free, and has many features to make life easier. However, different users have different needs. And it is wise to have a backup plan. This is what I do.
I scanned the same 2FA code using Authy and Google Authenticator on two separate phones. It is impossible for me to lose both phones or access both applications at the same time. Not to mention Authy also has cloud backup and multi-device features. One phone is a backup phone that stays safe in my office drawer, so I never lose it until my house catches fire. And then, there is a backup code. You can now call me paranoid, but that’s me.