Beginning today a new feature called Two-factor authentication will be added to your HomeAway, VRBO, or VacationRentals.com dashboard to help protect the important, personal information about you within it.
It is easier than you think for bad guys or fraudsters to get access to your username and password. Because of this reason two-factor authentication has been introduced on a number of other sites you may use – like your email account, social media accounts, or your online banking account.
Two-factor authentication is an extra layer of security above and beyond your username and password because it leverages something you know (username and password) and something you have (your phone).
Take a minute to think about all of the things in your HomeAway dashboard that you wouldn’t want someone else to have access to or edit:
- Your physical address to your property
- Your first and last name
- Your email address and phone number
- Your primary residence mailing address
- Your payment methods (credit card ending in XXXX and the expiration date)
- Your guests information
- Communication with your guests
Although unauthorized access to HomeAway dashboards is rare, when it does happen the damage can be very serious.
What and How?
The first thing that is important to know is that you will not be required to use two-factor authentication every time you log in. You should only be asked to authenticate a device about every 12 months. So if you log in using your smart phone, your home computer, and your tablet, you will need to authenticate all of those using two-factor authentication and then you won’t be asked again for up to a year.
Once you’ve authenticated a device, you should also experience your security questions much less frequently.
- First time setup:
- After you’ve entered your username and password you will be asked either enter a new phone number or use a phone number already on your account to receive a 6-digit unique verification code. This verification code can be sent to you via a text message or an automated voice call. The code typically arrives to you within a few seconds and once you’ve gotten it, you simply enter it into the website and you will be logged in like you normally would.
- Once you are successfully logged in your dashboard, you can go to the ‘personal details’ section under your account settings and click on the ‘two-factor authentication’ tab to add up to a total of 5 additional phone numbers.
- For example, you authenticated using your cell phone but your spouse or partner will need to log in later, you will want to add their phone number to the two-factor authentication tab.
- Future logins:
- In the future, or even later the same day, if you log in from a new device and experience two-factor authentication, you will simply choose from the phone numbers on your account and receive the 6-digit code to enter in.