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PennKey Two-Step Verification for Students

January 10, 2019

All Penn students are required to use Two-Step Verification to login to PennKey protected resources.

All Penn students are required to use Two-Step Verification to login to PennKey protected resources.

“Two-Step” enhances security for University information assets and community members’ personal data. With Two-Step Verification, your data is protected even if your PennKey password is compromised. This initiative is sponsored by the Provost Office/ISC and is required University wide.

Details and instructions are below. If you have any questions or need assistance, please contact ITS at ; 215-898-2679; or schedule an appointment.


What is Two-Step Verification?

  • With Two-Step, you’ll log in with your PennKey and password and then, as a second step, will verify your identity using a device in your possession (such as a mobile phone).
  • Two-Step is easy to use and provides numerous verification options, so you’ll always be able to access PennKey-protected resources – even if you’re not connected to a cellular data or wireless network. You can choose to:
    • Install the Duo Mobile App on your Android or iOS device in order to receive one touch “push notifications” or generate passcodes to enter in your browser (This is the Recommended Method)   
    • Receive a text message with a passcode on your mobile phone to enter into your browser (No smartphone required). 
    • Receive an automated phone call on your mobile phone or landline (No smartphone required).  
    • Use a key fob to generate a passcode to enter into your browser.

Two-Step provides back up options in case you don’t have access to your device, including pre-generated printable passcodes and the “Phone a Friend” feature (see FAQs at ).  

How do I enroll in Two-Step? 

  1. If using the Duo Mobile application, search for “Duo Mobile” in your iOS or Android device’s app store, then download and install the app. Duo Mobile is free to download and use. 
  2. From your computer’s browser, go to Penn’s Two-Step Verification enrollment page at and follow the instructions in the app to enroll in Two-Step and register your device. 
  3. At the end of the enrollment process, you’ll receive 20 pre-generated passcodes. Save or print these to use as a backup login option. 


What will happen after I enroll? 

  • All Penn web sites that prompt you for PennKey and password will now also require you to provide Two-Step Verification. 
  • During the log-in and verification process, you can choose to check the box for “Trust this browser.” This means you won’t be prompted to use Two-Step for subsequent logins, provided you use that same browser at least once every thirty days.  Note:  The “Trust this browser” feature is set for an individual browser on an individual computer.  If you switch to a different browser or use a different computer, you will need to complete Two-Step Verification for that new browser.

More Information

Two-Step Overview and Video Guide:

Two-Step FAQ:

Two-Step User Guide:

If you have any questions or need assistance setting up PennKey Two-Step Verification, please contact ITS at or 215-898-2679.