For the past two days I had this weird problem with two of my WordPress sites. All of a sudden, my two-factor authentication method stopped working. My codes in Google Authenticator were no longer accepted by the website and nothing had changed on the website.
If you are living in an area where summer- and wintertime is used, you might have made a mistake when setting up your WordPress website. We explain what to look for and what to fix in the following video. Not a video person? Continue reading for a simple tutorial.
Fixing the two-factor authentication problem
To check if your OTP stopped working because of time settings problems, perform the following steps – assuming you can still log into the website.
- Go to Settings > General
- Scroll until you see “Timezone”.
If you see that the time indicated below timezone is different from your client time, check the value in Timezone. You might have correctly chosen the UTC value for your timezone, but that doesn’t take summer and winter time into consideration. What you want to do is instead select a location-based setting, most likely the closest city in the same time zone.
Once you do that, you’ll see that the WordPress Wizards redo their math and display the correct time as soon as you have clicked “save”.
It’s not very likely that you will run into the same problem since most people won’t make the mistake I did when setting up my sites. However, if you did make the same mistake and this article lets you gain back control over your two-factor authentication, let us know in a comment below!