Help: I'm unable to set-up Google Authenticator for my WordPress site/user account

Google Authenticator is a great security layer. It works by using an App (of the same name) on your phone. You scan the QR codes and it saves the 2-Factor Authentication (2FA) account on your phone.

How does the Google Authenticator work?

You will need to install the Google Authenticator app on your phone and then activate. Activating the Google Authenticator of any system operates in this basic way:

  • You are provided a unique secret code that is used to generate these random passwords (usually in the form of a QR code to scan)
  • You use the Google Authenticator app to save this secret code on your phone
  • Your phone then creates random passwords for you to use when you're into your service (i.e. your WordPress sites)

How to set-up Google Authenticator for WordPress?

There are two steps to turning on Google Authenticator:

  1. Enable it in the Shield Security plugin
  2. Activate it for your own particular WordPress user account

To learn more about the Google Authenticator, read the blog article here.

If you follow these steps correctly and the App accepts your code, then going forward you must always provide the codes generated by the App as you login.

Important: If you have your IP whitelisted with Shield, Google Autheticator will not display on your user profile page. In this case, please go to IP Manager and make sure your IP is not whitelisted.

Also, if you've had Google Authenticator set for your profile in the past, you'll not be able to see Google Authenticator settings (QR code to scan) on your user profile page, This means that Google Authenticator is already set and you can use it. If you want to reset it, follow the guide outlined in this article here.

What issues could arise with the Google Authenticator?

Here are the most common issues:

  • Your Google Authenticator codes are not working
  • You didn''t receive a verification code
  • App passwords are not working

For the Google Authenticator issues and solutions, please visit this page.

If this article was not helpful - you're still unable to set-up Google Authenticator for your WordPress site/user account - you can reset it by following the guide outlined in the article here.