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This step-by-step guide shows you how to turn on two-factor authentication (2FA) on your computer and mobile devices for Instagram.

 What is two-factor authentication?

Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a procedure that typically requires a combination of something a user knows (pin, secret question) and something a user has (cards, fingerprint) in order to access a program or operating system.

2-factor authentication

Why is it important to turn it on?

Using 2FA to access your favourite programs provides enhanced security to traditional usernames and passwords. The multiple layers of authentication increase confidence that the user requesting access is actually who they claim to be, specifically you.

Where do I turn it on?

Where to turn on 2FA within a program depends on each program. However, the steps are universally simple and somewhat similar. Icons and language may differ slightly depending on the program, or device you are using.

Turning on 2FA for Instagram on your computer

By setting up 2FA for Instagram, you'll be asked to enter a special login code or to confirm your login attempts each time you try to access Instagram from a computer or mobile device Instagram doesn’t recognise. Instagram will also send you alerts whenever someone tries to log in to your account.

1. Sign in to Instagram on your web browser

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for desktop

2. Click the Profile icon in the top right corner (next to the heart icon)

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for desktop

3. Select Settings from the dropdown options

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for desktop

4. From the options on the left side of your screen, click Privacy and Security

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for desktop

5. Scroll down and click Edit Two-Factor Authentication

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for desktop

6. You will be given the choice of 2FA using Text Message or an Authentication App

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for desktop

The following steps will demonstrate the Text Message option


7. Instagram will confirm you want to turn on 2FA. Click Turn on.

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for desktop

8. Enter your mobile number you wish to use to receive 2FA text messages and click Next

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for desktop

9. Enter the confirmation code sent to the mobile number you entered in the previous step and click Done

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for desktop

10. Once you click Next, Recovery Codes will be displayed in case the code on the authenticator does not work. Copy these and store them in a safe place you will remember.

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for desktop

Turning on 2FA for Instagram on your mobile devices

1. Open the Instagram app from your Home screen

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for iPhone

2. Tap the person icon in the bottom right hand corner

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for iPhone

3. Tap the three horizontal lines in the top right hand corner

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for iPhone

4. Tap Settings

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for iPhone

5. Tap Security

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for iPhone

6. Tap Two-Factor Authentication

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for iPhone

7. Tap Get Started

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for iPhone

8. Follow the on-screen instructions to set-up two-factor authentication using the Authenticator app or Text message

Instagram will suggest you use a Duo two- factor authenticator app. See the end of this guide for more information on authentication apps

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for iPhone

9. Enter the six-digit Instagram key or code generated by the authenticator app or sent to your phone

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for iPhone

10. A confirmation window will appear once two-factor authentication has been turned on

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for iPhone

11. Once you click Next, Recovery Codes will be displayed in case the code on the authenticator does not work. Copy these and store them in a safe place you will remember

How to turn on 2 factor authentication for instagram for iPhone

Third party 2FA apps

If you would like to use a third party 2FA app, there are many available. Most are free of charge and effective with Facebook. The recommendation is to do your research and find a solution that’s right for you. Below are some examples of 2FA apps currently available.

Third party 2FA apps