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Get Google's strongest account security with the Advanced Protection Program

You can enroll in the Advanced Protection Program to get Google’s strongest account security.

Advanced Protection is recommended for anyone who is at an elevated risk of targeted online attacks. This includes journalists, activists, political campaign staffers, business leaders, IT admins, and anyone else whose Google Account contains valuable files or sensitive information.

How Advanced Protection works

Advanced Protection defends against targeted online attacks.

Prevents unauthorized access to your account

Advanced Protection requires security keys for sign in to help protect your Google data, like emails, documents, contacts, or other personal Google data. Even if a hacker has your username and password, they can't sign in without your security key.

Tip: You need your security key when you sign in for the first time on a computer, browser, or device. If you stay signed in, you may not be asked to use your security key the next time you log in.

Provides extra protection from harmful downloads

Advanced Protection performs extra checks on downloads. When downloading a file that may be harmful, it notifies you or blocks the download. On your Android phone, only apps from verified stores are allowed.

Keeps your personal information secure

To prevent unauthorized access, Advanced Protection only allows Google apps and verified third-party apps to access your Google Account data, and only with your permission.

Advanced Protection also blocks hackers from impersonating you to access your account: if anyone tries to recover your account, Advanced Protection takes extra steps to verify your identity.

Turn on Advanced Protection

You can turn on Advanced Protection immediately using the built-in security key of an eligible phone. If you don’t have an eligible phone, you must purchase your security keys first and then enroll in Advanced Protection.

With your phone’s built-in security key

Important: Due to COVID-19, we temporarily suspended enrollment with your phone’s built-in security key. You can still enroll with the 2 security keys you've purchased or join our waitlist to enroll with your phone’s built-in security key.

If you have a smartphone running Android 7.0 or higher, you can use the built-in security key to turn on Advanced Protection.

Important: If you enroll in Advanced Protection, to avoid being locked out of your account, don’t change your password or remove your phone from your trusted devices list until you’ve added at least one backup security key to your Google Account.

Set up your phone’s built-in security key

Important: You can only have one built-in security key on your account. If you have more than one eligible phone, you’ll need to choose one. You can switch to a different eligible phone at any time.
  1. Turn on 2-Step Verification and choose a second verification step.
    • If you already use 2-Step Verification, go to the next step.
  2. On your Android phone, go to
  3. Under "Signing in to Google," select 2-Step Verification. You might need to sign in.
  4. Scroll to “Set up alternative second step” and tap Add security key.
  5. Select your Android phone and then Add. You should see a confirmation that your phone was added as a security key.

Enroll in Advanced Protection

  1. Make sure you sign in to your Google Account on Chrome on your computer, Chromebook, iPhone or iPad.
  2. If you have more than one eligible Android phone, choose one to enroll in Advanced Protection.
  3. Enroll in Advanced Protection by following the on-screen instructions.
  4. Add or purchase an additional backup security key.

With 2 security keys that you purchased

Once you receive your security keys, you can enroll in Advanced Protection. We recommend purchasing 2 keys, a main key and a backup to store in a safe place.

  1. Purchase security keys that are compatible with the devices you use.
  2. If you haven’t already, turn on 2-Step Verification.
  3. Turn on Advanced Protection by following the on-screen instructions.
Tip: To use security keys with an iPhone or an iPad, you need to download the Google Smart Lock app to use your security key to sign in to your Google Account on your iPhone or iPad.

Get answers to common questions

Learn more about Advanced Protection, including details about how the program works and how to fix problems.

Decide if Advanced Protection is right for you

Advanced Protection is Google’s strongest account security, which comes with some restrictions on your account:

  • You need your security key to sign in on any new device.
  • To read your email, you can use Gmail. You can also create a code to use the iOS Mail app with your Google Account.
  • You aren't able to use your Google Account with some apps and services that require access to sensitive data like your emails and Google Drive. This way, hackers won’t have access to your personal Google data. You can create a temporary code to let Apple’s Mail, Contacts, and Calendar apps on iOS or Mozilla Thunderbird access your Gmail and other Google Account data.
  • If you lose access to your account, account recovery requires extra steps.

Secure your account without Advanced Protection

If Advanced Protection isn’t right for you or your security keys haven't arrived yet, you can still take steps to make your account more secure.
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