Millions of Twitter users could have their accounts locked as soon as Monday, according to a threat from the company.
If you’ve recently seen a warning on your account, you might not want to keep ignoring it.
What Is Changing?
Twitter started telling its users that the popular text message/SMS method for two-factor authentication would end on March 20.
Two-factor authentication is a process that requires a user to do two things to prove that they own the account they are using.
The first step asks for a username and a password. Most of the time, the second step is a code sent to the account-linked phone. It’s popular because the code in the text message is easy to copy and paste into Twitter.
Twitter stopped letting new accounts sign up for the text message/SMS method of two-factor authentication a month ago.
Why Is It Changing?
Users who pay the $8 monthly fee for Twitter Blue will still be able to use two-factor authentication with text messages.
For everyone else, Twitter is making changes because it wants to make more money.
Elon Musk says that phone companies are taking advantage of Twitter’s two-factor authentication to scam the company out of $60 million a year.
What Are My Options?
You don’t have to pay $8 a month for Twitter Blue to use two-factor authentication, which is good news.
You will have to get an authenticator app and connect it to your Twitter account.
You can get 2FAS, Google Authenticator, Twilio Authy, and Microsoft Authenticator, all of which are free to download.
Make sure you look into the different apps to find the best one for you. If you want more information, PCMag.com looked at all of the above options.
You could also use a security key.
What Happens if I Don’t Do Anything
Twitter is warning that people who use two-factor authentication and don’t turn it off by March 20 may not be able to get into their accounts.
iPhone and Android users can get the FOX4 News app.
The Twitter blog doesn’t say anything about locking accounts, but it does say that text message two-factor authentication will be turned off for accounts that still have it turned on on March 20. When you turn off text message two-factor authentication, your phone number is still linked to your Twitter account.
So, either nothing will happen or users will have to talk to Twitter to get their accounts unlocked.