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Twitter is finally making an important security change that helps everyone



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Twitter makes it possible to use 2FA without a telephone number. Angela Lang / CNET

Twitter recently announced that users can disable SMS-based two-factor authentication, a requirement that the company has retained despite the increased security risk of receiving 2FA codes via SMS .

Two factor authentication, generally considered a good practice when it comes to securing your online accounts, adds an extra layer of security to your online accounts by requiring a six-digit number after you enter the correct password. have entered for your account. Originally two-factor codes were mainly delivered via sms, but that has proven to be problematic. For example, the Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey account was hacked in August.

The person (s) who had control over his account posted hateful messages before they were deleted. They could access his account and bypass two-factor authentication by changing the SIM card linked to his phone number and then receiving the SMS two-factor authentication code in a practice commonly known as SIM swapping.

Now that Twitter is losing the requirement, you can now choose to receive its 2FA codes exclusively through third-party apps or a special security key. This is not only safer, but you also have access to your codes, even if your phone cannot receive text messages, such as during a long flight. If you have already enabled 2FA on your Twitter account, or if you persisted until the company dumped the SMS requirement, this is what you need to know.

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Setting up 2FA for your Twitter account

If you have not taken the time to set up two-factor authentication for your Twitter account, this is a good time now. It only adds a few seconds to the login process, but helps you keep your account secure. We are going to handle setting 2FA with an authentication app such as Google Authenticator or 1Password. If you are not sure which app to use, we have a guide with the best password managers, most of which contain authentication functions.

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You no longer have to leave text messages with 2FA codes enabled.


Screenshot by Jason Cipriani / CNET

This is what you should do:

  1. Visit the Account section of your account on Twitter.com .
  2. With the Account tab, click Security .
  3. Then click on Two-factor authentication .
  4. You will see three different options: SMS message, authentication app and security key. Select Authentication app .

The rest of the process varies depending on the app you use, but generally consists of scanning a QR code created by Google that allows the app to create your 2FA codes. After scanning the QR code, you will be asked to enter the six-digit number in your app to check if it is set correctly.

From now on, every time you log in to your Twitter account, you will be asked for your 2FA code after you have entered your password. Again, it adds a few seconds to the process, but it is worth it.

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Discard the SMS codes. You are safer to do this.


Jason Cipriani / CNET

Stop Twitter sending SMS messages 2FA codes

If you have already set up two-factor authentication on your account and are using an authenticator app, it is a good idea to disable SMS codes. This prevents someone from accessing your account via SIM swapping.

This is what you should do:

  1. Visit the Account section of your account on Twitter.com .
  2. With the Account tab, click Security .
  3. Then click on Two-factor authentication .
  4. Remove the check mark in the box next to Text Message and accept the change if prompted.

Twitter is not the only website that uses 2FA. Apple, Google and Facebook each offer the added security layer. Even Fortnite has 2FA . Remember that the added security layer is for your own protection and yes, it is a minor inconvenience, but in the end it is much less than the amount of time and headache you will have to deal with if someone gets access to accounts.


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