How You Can Secure Your Twitter Account?
Care should be taken to secure your Twitter account the same way you secure your bank details and your online shopping details. With the right security procedure, you can ensure that you are the only one that has access to your Twitter account.
A lot of people have lost control of their hacked Twitter passwords and found that their Twitter account was used for nefarious things like posting ridiculous links, begging money for friends, asking friends for access to personal details, etc.
Protect yourself and your friends from these by securing your Twitter account.
You can use a browser to carry out most of the steps that will be described here. You can also use the Twitter app if you wish. Here we’ll be using a browser.
First, go to your Twitter account settings. There are several things that you can do to secure your Twitter account here. The first on the list is your password.
Select a strong, “anti-hacker”, Twitter password
A lot has been said about the use of strong passwords, but this advice can’t be overemphasized. A strong password is the primary defense for your Twitter account. Don’t use a password that is easy for other people to guess. Things like your birthdate, your children birthdate, your children’s name, the name of your pet and your street name can be easily guessed, and they should never be used. Yes, they might be easy to remember, but they are the least secured. The harder your password is to remember, the more secured it is.
To make things easier for you, you should use a password manager. A password manager will store all kind of complicated passwords for various applications and websites. You only need to remember the password for the password manager. Password managers can generate highly secured passwords for you, and they will store these passwords, so you do not have to remember them.
If you are using a weak password, your twitter can get hacked, it’s time to change it. Go to the account settings page on Twitter and click on password.
Enter your old password, before entering your new password. You can enter a strong, brand new password or let your password manager select a strong password for you. When you are done, save changes and now you have a strong password for your Twitter account.
SMS-Based Two-Factor Authentication
The next thing you need to do to secure your Twitter account is to add Two-Factor Authentication or 2FA. On Twitter, this feature is called ‘Login verification.’
So, anytime you or any other person tries to log in to your Twitter account, a unique SMS code will be sent to your phone number or another third-party two-factor authentication service. This provides an extra layer of security for your Twitter account.
To set up Two-Factor Authentication, go to your Twitter preferences, then go to account section. Click on ‘Security’ and then click on ‘Set Up Login Verification’ button.
Once you click on that, you will see a popup that you will use to set up 2FA.
Click on start. You’ll be asked to enter your password. Enter it.
Then you’ll be asked to verify your phone number. Enter the phone number and click on ‘Send code.’
Within some seconds, an SMS code will be sent to your phone. Enter that code to confirm the process.
Once the code has been entered, you will get informed that login verification has been enabled on your Twitter account. Twitter will offer you backup codes. You can go for the backup codes now or later. If you want to use backup codes later, you can go to Settings, then Security, then Privacy.
After you have enabled Login Requests, you will see a new option ‘generate app password.’ This will create a temporary password that you can use to log in to Twitter in apps or on new devices. These temporary passwords last for just one hour. They are great for quick logins.
Now, scroll to the bottom of the page and click on ‘Save Changes.’
Now you have set up 2FA successfully.
Application-Based Two-Factor Authentication
The procedures explained earlier were for SMS-Based two-factor authentication. SMS-based two-factor authentication could be insecure, so you may need to use a more secured application-based two-factor authentication. These are powered by third-party applications like Authy and others. They provide a higher level of security than SMS.
To set up application-based two-factor authentication, you’ll need to first setup SMS-based two-factor authentication.
Go back to account section of the Twitter settings page. The button you clicked on earlier will be labeled ‘Review your login verification methods.’
Click on that button, and you will be taken to a page where you will be shown all your login verification methods.
You will see a ‘Set up’ link beside ‘Mobile security app.’ Click on the ‘Set up’ link.
Click on ‘Start’ and you will get a QR code that you can scan with the mobile two-factor authentication app of your choice.
So, head to the two-factor authentication app of your choice, add a new account, scan the QR code, and that is all.
Once you have setup application-based two-factor authentication, you can disable SMS-based two-factor authentication.
Ask for personal information before a password reset
You can also set Twitter to ask for personal information before a password reset. You can do this in the same place where you set up Login Requests.
When you check this box, Twitter will request for personal information before passwords can be reset. This will prevent hackers from resetting your Twitter password.
Once you have checked that box, you can click on ‘save changes’
Monitor connected apps
Twitter allows you to connect other apps and services to it just like Facebook and Google. This way, you can connect to these services easily, and they can post Tweets on your timeline easily. But as time goes on, you might stop using these apps. It’s best that you monitor those apps, so you can have an idea of apps that you have granted permission to. Check for apps that you no longer use and revoke their access.
Go to your Account Settings Page and click on ‘apps.’ Apps can be found towards the bottom of the page.
Go through the entire app list and if you see apps that you no longer use, or you don’t want to give access to, click on ‘revoke access.’
Do this for as many apps as you wish. You can also repeat this procedure every few months to ensure your privacy and make sure that unwarranted apps do not have access to your Twitter account.
If you mistakenly click ‘revoke’ on an app that you are still using, you can click on ‘Undo Revoke Access.’
On the Twitter Account Settings page, there are other things that you can examine like notifications. But these may not affect account security directly. They could make Twitter less disturbing but not more secured.
What we have covered in this section are the major things that affect the security of your Twitter account.
Follow all of them and you will make your Twitter account more secured and harder to hack.