I wanted to use the Google Authenticator app to set up two factor authentication. However when I click on the button to scan a QR code, it opens up a camera with 'NAB Banking' at the top (my internet banking app). When I scan a code, it says 'Oops! This isn't a valid BPAY code.' (see screenshot below)

Is there some settings related to using the camera for QR code scanning, that my internet banking app has taken 'hostage'? (That I might hopefully be able to clear?) I didn't have the NAB app open at the time, and as far as I remember I have never used the QR code scanning from within it.


  • Google Authenticator 2.49
  • NAB: 3.0.1
  • Phone: Samsung Galaxy S3, GT-19305, Android version 4.1.2

qr codes taken hostage by nab

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    Could you try to go to the Settings > Apps > NAB Banking page and tap "Clear Defaults"? Does this still happen after clearing the defaults for NAB Banking? – dotVezz Jan 30 '14 at 13:30
  • @dotVezz it already says "no defaults set". – pfctdayelise Jan 30 '14 at 14:18
  • 2
    Stupid question: Do you have any QR reader installed at all? Maybe your banking app is the only one registered for barcode reading. No other candidate, no other choice. – Izzy Jan 30 '14 at 14:47
  • @Izzy good point. I just installed an app which reads QR codes if I open it directly, but if I use the Google Authenticator app it still goes to the NAB reader. – pfctdayelise Jan 31 '14 at 2:07
  • One more guess: maybe it can not be "any" QR app, but needs to be a specific one. Many apps use the ZXing library for barcodes, so you might give the ZXing Reader a try (though I prefer QR Droid :)) – Izzy Jan 31 '14 at 6:56

The solution for your issue can be found on the app's help page. As I already guessed, you need to install a barcode reader app. But not just "any", ist has to be a specific one. And moreover, even my guess for ZXing Reader was absolutely correct – if you take a closer look at the screenshot taken from that place:

Screenshot from the Google Authenticator help page (click image for original size)

Btw: The name "ZXing" stands for Zebra Crossing, but I doubt it can decode the Zebra's natural barcodes :)

As it reportedly works as well in this context, I recommend using QR Droid if you want to use the QR Reader for additional tasks as well. QR Droid has a much nicer interface, offers additional features, and gives you much more flexibility.

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  • QR Droid works too. I think you just need a QR Reader that doesn't limit you to some form of data, and Google provided the most popular to help users that don't know :) – Matthieu Harlé Jan 31 '14 at 7:17
  • If QR Droid works as well, as Shywim suggests, I'd prefer that over ZXing as it gives you much more flexibility (and has a nicer GUI ;) – Izzy Jan 31 '14 at 7:23
  • Thanks @Izzy, great detective work! I installed QR Droid and now it works. No idea how you found that help page. Would be good if it was linked from the app itself. – pfctdayelise Jan 31 '14 at 11:38
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    That's how I found it: It's linked from the app's description on Google Play, directly :) // One PS: My guess is your banking app also uses the ZXing library, and exposed its intents – so GA thought it detected the ZXing Reader itself... Thanks for the feedback on QR Droid, confirming Shywim. I will include that with my answer. – Izzy Jan 31 '14 at 12:10

Maybe install a QR code reader from the app store. That's what I did when setting up Authenticator.

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  • I just tried that, but Google Authenticator still goes to the NAB app camera. – pfctdayelise Jan 31 '14 at 2:07
  • 1
    @pfctdayelise: In settings -> Applications -> NAB Banking -> tap on Clear Defaults – Matthieu Harlé Jan 31 '14 at 7:18

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