I’m sure you are already familiar with 2FA or Two-Factor Authentication, and you have been using it to elevate the security of the accounts which offer it. But did you know that instead of using Google or Microsoft Authenticator, you can add 2FA codes to the 1Password manager?
Adding 2FA codes to 1Password has never been easier. The process is simple and requires no more effort than adding them to other Authenticator apps. But the benefit is enormous; you will no longer need to type the code from your phone manually. Instead, the 1Password will automatically populate the 2FA code for you.
To add the 2FA codes to the 1Password visit the account website and generate the QR code. Next, open the 1Password browser extension, select the account from the list, and press settings while having a QR code displayed on the page. Finally, press the Scan QR Code option from the menu to scan and save the 2FA codes in the 1Password manager.
The next time you try to log in to your account, the 1Password will automatically populate the 2FA code, making the process much more manageable.
Although not necessary, having the account saved in the Password Manager makes the process much simpler.
You may also like: Popular Password Managers that Work with YubiKey.
In some instances, the 1Password manager may have an issue scanning the QR code displayed on the page. In that case, you can add the One-Time Password field and type the Secret Key manually to achieve the same result.
There is a saying, though.
Don’t keep all eggs in one basket.
Many online security experts will argue that having the credentials and 2FA codes in the Password Manager is not a good idea since it would become a single point of failure when compromised. I fully agree with this point of view.
Let me explain.
Suppose your login and password for an account secured with Two-Factor Authentication get compromised, and you have used Google Authenticator instead of your Password Manager to generate your 2FA codes. The perpetrator will not be able to access your accounts as he will not have the required 2FA codes on hand.
You may also like: Removing Google Authenticator? – Do this First.
Although this is a solid argument to keep your 2FA codes in other apps than the Password Manager, I must admit that I haven’t followed this advice myself. I like the convenience of not having to keep my phone with me when I want to access some account.
The decision is yours.
You may also like: Should I use Two-Factor Authentication?
You can keep using Google or Microsoft Authenticator to generate your 2FA codes or add them to 1Password. I think I have clarified the benefit and potential risks when saving the 2FA codes in the 1Password manager.
I have been using 1Password for over three years now, make sure to read my post about the best 1Password tips and tricks which I believe you will also find useful.
You can either read my guide or watch a video below explaining the process of adding 2FA codes to 1Password in detail.
Use the Scan QR Code option in 1Password.
The 1Password manager can scan the QR codes generated by the account when setting the Two-Factor Authentication. Although this is the easiest way to add the 2FA codes to the Password Manager, an alternative option is to manually type the Secret Key, which I have shown in the next section.
Generate the 2FA QR code for the account.
Log in to the account and generate the QR code, which you will scan using the 1Password browser extension Scan QR code option.
I logged in to my Google account and used the Change Authenticator app option to generate the new QR code in the example below. Of course, any other service or account where 2FA security is an option will have a similar process.
Now is the crucial part.
Leave the QR code displayed on the page and expand the 1Password browser extension.
Scan the QR code using the 1Password extension.
Make sure that the QR code is displayed on the page and press Scan QR Code in the 1Password browser extension menu to scan the code.
You should now be able to generate the 2FA codes in the 1Password manager. From now on, you can automatically populate the Two-Factor Authentication field with the code using 1Password.
Confirm the 2FA code to complete the process.
Now get back to the page with the QR code displayed and press next. Finally, click inside the field or press the 1Password icon to auto-fill the 2FA code and press verify to complete the process.
Add 2FA Code to 1Password manually.
An alternative to adding the 2FA code to 1Password by scanning the QR code is to manually add the One-Time Password field and paste the Secret Key.
Display the 2FA Secret Key.
The QR code is just a simple way of moving the Secret Key between devices. You can always view the Secret Key used to generate the 2FA QR code by pressing the ‘Can’t scan it’ option.
Copy the Secret Key and open the 1Password desktop app. We will now add the One-Time Password field to the account in the manager.
Create a One-Time Password field.
Open the 1Password desktop app, find the account, and press Edit.
Under the Security section, press Add a field and select One-Time Password.
Copy the Secret Key displayed on the page, paste it into the field, and press Save.
You should now be able to see the six-digit 2FA code generated in the 1Password app.
Finish the process by typing the 2FA code.
Complete the process by pressing Next, populating the 2FA field using 1Password, and pressing Verify.