Twitter Ups Security After 250K Accounts Reset

February 7, 2013
Ryan Giggs with Twitter Birds Circling A by ssoosay, on Flickr
Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License  by  ssoosay 
Twitter has shared that the company is looking forward to introducing two-factor authentication (or 2FA) on the website following a breach on its servers?that led to around 250,000 Twitter users having their account passwords reset. The company did not specify who most likely caused the attack or even the extent of the damage. At present, Twitter uses OAuth as its authentication protocol. Secure Socket Layer or SSL encryption is also used by the social micro-blogging site to protect the information being transferred among its servers. Had 2FA been installed, the problem in the previous week could have been prevented. 2FA only allows the owner to access the account even in the event of a lost password. 2FA or two factor authentication is defined as an approach that requires presenting a knowledge factor and a possession factor. An inherent factor may also be used, as long as there are two out of three present. The knowledge factor refers to the PIN or password. The possession factor refers to a smart phone or keycard. The inherent factor refers to an eye iris or fingerprint pattern. Although Twitter has not confirmed if and when it will be introducing the new protection approach, experts highly recommend that future problems can be avoided effectively if it is available. A number of well-known online companies have already used 2FA to protect the information on their servers such as Microsoft and Google. Twitter also needs to consider the potential consequences that come with 2FA. Should the owner lose the physical token, it will be very hard to retrieve or access the account.

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