Facebook Introduced Code Generator to Improve Sign-on Security

I discovered Facebook’s Code Generator in 2012. That was shortly after my Facebook account had been hacked…twice. Both times we were traveling out of the country and I was using public networks.

That was back before we knew just how insecure public networks were!

When I first discovered Code Generator I was thrilled because I use too many different types of devices to effectively use an Authenticator app like Google Authenticator.

When I saw in the App Store that my Facebook app had recently updated, I figured out the problem.
When I saw in the App Store that my Facebook app had recently updated, I figured out the problem.

I figured that Facebook must have updated the app, but not their support (Help) Pages.

We’d just returned home from another international trip and I tried to login to Facebook on an iPad using Safari. I received the message that I should enter the number generated by Code Generator…but when I opened the ios Facebook app, their Code Generator was nowhere to be found!

I tried things like generating backup codes and then using one of those codes in Safari…but that didn’t work. Nothing in fact did work!

That’s when I decided to try the whole process over again. Upon doing so the Code Generator did finally kick in and I was able to use it! But it’s no longer stored within the app. So I’ll explain how to use it now.

How to Use Facebook’s Code Generator in 2019

In order to use my instructions you must have Facebook’s ios app installed.

In order to use the code generator you must first attempt to login to Facebook by entering your account email address or your username…and then your Facebook password. Once you’ve done that the Facebook app should send you an app message…which is sort of like a text message. This message contains the Code that you need to enter.

To see this message, just drag your finger down from the top of your screen and all your most recent ios notifications will be displayed. Tap on the notification message that the Facebook app just generated.

Below: As soon as you tap on that message, Facebook will generate a code and open the app to display it for you.
 A screenshot of the code the Facebook app generates.
This is what Code Generator looks like when you open it in the most current version.

Memorize this number and enter it wherever you were attempting to log into Facebook.

Facebook’s Code Generator Support Pages Don’t Explain How to Use the Current Code Generator

Facebook used to include that information. Unfortunately, they still have the old support information related to using their earlier version of Code Generator within their newest ios app. See below for examples.

A help screen explaining Code Generator.
Here’s an in-app help screen that explains Code Generator.
Facebook's in-app support provides old instructions for using their Code Generator.
Facebook’s in-app support provides old instructions for using their Code Generator.

That’s why I’ve written this post. I spent way too much time trying to figure this out. I even messaged Facebook Support explaining the problem. So, hopefully they will fix it soon. But I’m not holding my breath waiting for that to happen!

One time Facebook started blocking my 90 year old Dad’s posts from his blog…stating that they were a security risk. I emailed them and it was a good year later when someone from Facebook actually responded.

The response I got was a canned message thanking me for letting them know! About another year-long wait ensued before Facebook finally fixed the problem…from what I remember. The irony was that…

In the meantime my Dad had quit Facebook because he believed it was insecure!!!

Which Version of Facebook Still Has Code Generator In It?

Below is a screenshot I took from another one of my iPads that still does have Code Generator on it. I found three different versions of Facebook on my iPads which are all pictured below.

This version doesn’t have it!

The iPad that does have Code Generator is using Facebook version

Apparently there have been 2 app updates since that one.

Below is a Screenshot showing where you’ll find Code Generator in this older version of the app. You’ll arrive at the screenshot below by tapping on the ‘hamburger menu’ at the bottom right-side of the page. Then you open the ‘Settings and Privacy‘ section that’s shown below by tapping on the tiny little downward pointing arrow.

Where to find the old Code Generator within the ios app.
Where to find the old Code Generator within the ios app.

Facebook’s Cope Generator Support Information

Facebook has published some information online about Code Generator and how it works…which is different than the old, outdated information that still appears within the app. But this information looks like it was written by someone who didn’t fully understand how it works themselves…because this description really makes no sense!

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.