Twitter Focuses on Account Security Ahead of 2020 Election
They include accounts belonging to members of the U.S. Congress, U.S. governors, secretaries of state, political parties, and candidates with Twitter Election Labels running for the U.S. House, U.S. Senate, or Governor, as well as those linked to major U.S. news outlets and political journalists. President Trump's account is believed to already have extra safeguards in place to protect it from hackers.
The move comes just a couple of months after a number of high-profile accounts, among them those belonging to politicians such as Joe Biden and Barack Obama, had their Twitter accounts targeted in a Bitcoin scam that exploited flawed security procedures.
In a message posted on Thursday, September 17, Twitter said it is contacting specific account holders via an in-app notification, outlining its revamped approach to security.
The measures include insisting that accounts use a strong password. “Accounts with a weak password will be required to update and use a stronger password the next time they log in,” the company said.
Twitter will also enable password reset protection for accounts by default. This setting is designed to prevent unauthorized password changes by requiring an account to confirm its email address or phone number in order to initiate a password reset.
Account holders will also be strongly encouraged to enable two-factor authentication, an additional layer of security designed to protect accounts from unauthorized logins.
In the coming weeks, Twitter said it will also add additional proactive internal security safeguards for relevant accounts.
These will include more sophisticated detections and alerts to help both the company and account holders respond more quickly to suspicious activity. To stop malicious account takeover attempts, stronger login defenses will also be introduced, as well as an improved account recovery support system so that security issues can be quickly resolved.
“Implementing these security measures is a critical preventative step, and you will continue to see us introduce new protections and features to help safeguard accounts on Twitter,” the company said.
In another election-related move, Twitter said last week that it would remove any tweets from its platform that it believes are intended to undermine the November 3 vote.