Google occasionally rewards One members for paying the extra money for premium storage. If you live in the United States and have one of the “premium” 2TB+ plans, you may be eligible for a free two-factor Titan Security key, but subscribers to the “basic” 200GB plan are out of luck.
If you’re eligible for the offer, you should see the option listed among your other account benefits, allowing you to claim one of the two presently available Titan security keys (each of which is merely a rebadged Feitan model). You can choose between the USB-A and NFC version (worth $30) and the USB Type-C/NFC version (worth $35). The old Bluetooth-based security key with a battery has been phased out.
In 2019, Google offered a similar offer for Advanced Protection users, allowing them to send a friend a free pair of two 2FA keys in exchange for enabling Advanced Protection on their own account and earning a free Nest Mini.
It’s easy to take advantage of this deal: It should appear as a “featured benefit” in the Google One App’s Home tab, Benefits tab, or on the Google One site’s benefits section. In either case, claiming it via the Google Store is as simple as a single click or press, with a discount voucher covering the whole cost of the 2FA key and slower shipping.
Two-factor authentication is one of the most effective ways to improve the security of your online accounts by combining “what you have” with “what you know” when confirming your identity, ensuring that you are who you say you are. You can’t log in without the hardware key.
Some of us rely on phone number-based two-factor authentication (you know, those 5-6 digit numbers you get by SMS to log in), but that’s an insecure approach given how vulnerable carriers are to socially engineered assaults. The easiest approach to protect your most essential accounts is to use hardware-based two-factor authentication with a hardware security key like this. And if you don’t already have a 2FA hardware security key, I strongly advise you to take advantage of the offer if it’s available. Although Google’s hardware security keys are technically vulnerable to a complex cloning attempt, such an assault is extremely difficult to carry out and unlikely to be an issue.