How to: secure your Twitter account
EVER received Twitter advice about a blog besmirching your character, or a friend advising you how to lose 20kg in a week? If so, there’s a good chance your friend’s Twitter account has been hacked. The rate at which Twitter accounts are being compromised is increasing, causing the social network to devise a new way to secure your profile. It’s called two-factor authentication and it’s easy to set up.
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Twitter calls this new system ‘‘login verification’’ and it’s an option listed in each account’s settings. To enable it, users must open settings, scroll down to ‘‘Account Security’’, and select the box beside the ‘‘Require a verification code when I sign in’’ option. Users must register a mobile phone number to use the service. Twitter will send six-digit verification codes to this phone number each time you log in to the service to ensure an account is being used by its rightful owner. The new security system only affects users when they log in to Twitter.com using a web browser, so the Twitter apps you use regularly on phones and tablets won’t require passcodes. If an app requires users to log in again for some reason, a temporary password can be generated by visiting the account’s ‘‘Applications’’ settings on the web.
Unfortunately, Twitter’s two-factor verification isn’t yet available for all Australian users. While Telstra phone numbers can be used with this new service, Optus and Vodafone numbers are not compatible carriers.