Science and Tech


Twitter Bolsters Security, Convenience With New Features

Twitter has added the option to reset your password via SMS and introduced a system for detecting suspicious login attempts.
Posted at 3:48 PM, May 10, 2014

Twitter has updated its service to make the login process more convenient and secure.

Prone to forgetting your password, or maybe you just haven't logged in in a while? Twitter has added the option to reset your password using a code sent to your phone.

In a blog post announcing the new recovery option, Twitter shows how the feature looks on iOS — simply choose between an email address or phone number. And the social service says it has "added some customized tips to help you strengthen your account security."

And that's not all it's doing for security — Twitter has introduced a new system that analyzes data like location, device and login history to identify suspicious behavior.

"If we identify a login attempt as suspicious, we'll ask you a simple question about your account — something that only you know — to verify that your account is secure before granting access." (Via Twitter)

Following massive security breaches like, say, Heartbleed, we'd call this a good thing for Twitter account security.

Especially given this report from Re/code which says of 3,000 people surveyed, 67% of respondents "had done nothing to secure any of their accounts" since researchers exposed the bug.

There's also the issue of brand accounts getting hacked — the Burger King/McDonald's fiasco, Microsoft getting hacked by the Syrian Electronic Army and The Wall Street Journal's recent breach to name a few. (Via BetaBeat, Mashable, CNN)

And a writer for ThreatPost says a Twitter account can be valuable to hackers.​ "People ... tend to reuse [passwords] across a number of different sites and services. Attackers know this, and realize if they can get access to a user’s Twitter account information, they may be able to reuse those credentials on other sites, as well." (Via ThreatPost)

Knowing this, Twitter added the option for two-factor authentication last year. This latest feature adds yet another layer of security to your social media account.