Do you know what two factor authentication is? graph of japanese recently reported on a survey conducted by goo Research into two factor authentication, a security method that usually consists of a web site sending you an access code to your registered mobile phone when you try to log onto their services. Google also provide an Android application that generates the access codes locally.


Between the 20th and 25th of February 2014 1,078 members of the goo Research online monitor group completed a private internet-based questionnaire. 53.5% of the sample were male, 13.4% in their teens, 15.8% in their twenties, 21.3% in their thirties, 17.4% in their forties, 14.8% in their fifties, and 17.3% aged sixty or older.

Last year I wrote some client (Android and iPhone) and server (Apache and Microsoft Server) code to support two factor authentication using a TOTP. I’d love to tell you more, but I cannot as it was (a) work-related and (b) a retelling of the tale would require mentioning other people who might read this blog in an unfavourable light.

Research results

Q1: Do you know what two factor authentication is? (Sample size=1,078)

Yes, and use it (to SQ1 and SQ2) 13.4%
Yes, but not currently using it (to SQ1, SQ2 and SQ3) 3.6%
Yes, but never used it 13.2%
No, don’t know it 69.9%

Q1SQ1: With which services have you used two factor authentication? (Sample size=183, multiple answer)

Facebook 33.9%
Google 28.4%
LINE 18.6%
Microsoft 11.5%
Twitter 10.4%
Dropbox 5.5%
Evernote 2.2%
LinkedIn 1.1%
Other 17.5%

Q1SQ2: Have you had security trouble since using two factor authentication? (Sample size=183)

Yes 2.7%
No 86.3%
Don’t remember 10.9%

Q1SQ3: Why are you not currently using two factor authentication? (Sample size=39)

Too much bother, too much effort 82.1%
Stopped using the service 17.9%
Don’t want to reveal phone number, other personal information 17.9%
Have other security software to harden my PC, so don’t need it 12.8%
Had security trouble after using two-factor authentication 5.1%
Installed an app that didn’t require two-factor authentication 2.6%
Other 2.6%


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