Facebook has faced a lot of criticisms over data protection lately, but it is taking a step in the right direction by enhancing important security features.
Announcing Facebook's Two-Factor Authentication
On Wednesday, May 23, Facebook announced it is improving the two-factor authentication process for users. The biggest change involves the removal of a requirement where users had to previously provide a phone number in order to use the security feature.
"We've made it easier than ever to enable two-factor authentication with a streamlined setup flow that guides you through the process," Facebook wrote in a blog post.
With the change, users can sign up for two-factor authentication on Facebook through a third-party app, such as Duo and Google Authenthicator. Facebook has been slowly rolling out the change to most users over the last month.
A few months ago, Facebook encountered public backlash because its two-factor authentication required a phone number. Some users were complaining that they received spam messages with this requirement.
"I can just say that we've gotten the feedback that people want it to be easier, people do take security seriously," Pete Voss, Facebook's security communications manager, told Wired.
Why Should Users Select Two-Factor Authentication?
Previously, platforms such as Facebook used text messages to send authentication codes for security. However, these codes can be easily intercepted by hackers. New two-factor authentication tactics, such as hardware tokens, provide more security.
Two-factor authentication allows users to add more security to their accounts. Typically, users will be prompted to enter a numerical code when the platform assumes that there is a security change, such as a new device on the account. In addition to Facebook, other platforms such as Google offer similar protection against hackers.
Although two-factor authentication does not guarantee protection from hackers, it will usually stop most hackers from accessing an account.
How To Sign Up For Two-Factor Authentication On Facebook
In addition to removing the phone number requirement, Facebook is also making the sign-up process for two-factor authentication easier.
Users can sign up by going to the settings menu on Facebook and clicking on "security and login." From there, users can click on "use two-factor authentication." Users then will have the option to use a phone number or another method to set up the feature. One new method that Facebook users can try is a code-generating app that helps prevent hackers from taking data from an account.