Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a great security tool, and we always recommend it. Most applications make it easy to activate 2FA, and Amazon is no exception. Here we show you how to enable it to increase security.
You must log in to your Amazon account, either on the website or in your mobile application. Once you are logged in, go to Your account, then Login and security. Then, click on the Edit button next to "Advanced security settings".
At the top of the page, next to the title "Verification in two steps", click on "Start". And yes, Amazon calls it two-step verification instead of two-factor authentication. But it is the same.
Now you can choose how you want to receive your 2FA codes. We recommend using an authentication application, which is the process we will show here. But you can use SMS if you prefer, since it is better than not using 2FA at all.
Steps to activate two-factor verification
The first step in the process is to install your authentication app, which we will assume you have already done. The second step is to open your authentication app and add an account.
If you are using the Amazon website: hold the phone's camera with the QR code shown by Amazon and follow the instructions in your app.
If you are using the Amazon application on your mobile: copy the long code that is displayed and add it manually to your authentication application.
Finally, type the code generated by your authentication application in the “Enter OTP” text box on the Amazon page and then click on “Verify code and continue”.
If you are using the Amazon application on your smartphone, the process is already complete.
If you are logged in to the Amazon website, the next stage gives you information on how to use 2FA if you are on a device that cannot display a second screen.
Two-factor authentication does not work with Kindle
In some tests with Kindles up to five years, there was no request from the 2FA, so there may not be any problems here. But we still recommend that you verify all your devices that use your Amazon account to make sure you can access your account as expected.
On the same page, you can also tell Amazon that your current browser does not require a 2FA verification by activating the checkbox: "It does not require codes in this browser." You should only do this if you are on your own computer, not someone else's or a shared computer.
If you set your browser to delete cookies when you close your browser, this will not work unless you tell your browser to make an exception for Amazon cookies. It is up to you if it is worth the exchange of easier logins. After that, click on «I have it. Activate the Verification button in two steps «, and that's it.
You will return to the "Advanced security settings" page.
Unlike some applications, Amazon does not provide backup codes if you have problems with 2FA. Instead, it will send you a text message if your authentication application does not work properly. And if all else fails, you'll have to call them for help.
You should get help from Amazon
Amazon customer service is surprisingly good, but ideally you can solve the problems yourself, especially the login problems. On the "Advanced security settings" page there is a "Backup methods" section, with the option to add a new phone.
Use this to add a mobile phone to which SMS codes can be sent if you lose your main phone. If you don't have a second phone, use the phone number of a trusted family member or friend. Otherwise, you will have to contact Amazon if your account is locked.
Now your Amazon account is set up for 2FA. If you have the Amazon application on your smartphone, you will not need to enter a 2FA code, as long as it is the same mobile you use to authenticate the Amazon website.