Security: 2FA adoption is incredibly low with Twitter users

Twitter logo through a magnifying glass

In a recently published transparency report, Twitter has revealed figures that show a disappointing adoption of 2FA (two-factor authentication) by users.

While the number of users choosing to secure their account with 2FA is on the increase, it "remains relatively low", says Twitter. And we are talking low numbers here -- a mere 2.3 percent of the Twitter userbase is concerned enough about security to enable two-factor authentication.

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The report covers the period from July to December 2020, and it shows that there has been a 9.1 percent increase in 2FA usage compared to the previous period. Nevertheless, this is a very small percentage of users, and Twitter says it would like to encourage wider uptake.

Twitter says of the numbers: "Overall 2FA adoption remains relatively low, which is an unfortunate challenge across the industry. When accounts do not enable 2FA, we are left relying on less robust mechanisms to help keep Twitter accounts secure. We are, however, encouraged to see a significant increase in 2FA usage over the reporting period since it shows that people are increasingly utilizing 2FA to protect their Twitter accounts".

The company goes on to say:

Security keys, while the most secure form of 2FA, are still relatively new. Twitter has made numerous improvements to our security key support over the past year, and we hope to see the usage number grow in the next reporting interval.

Overall, these numbers illustrate the continued need to encourage broader adoption of 2FA, while also working to improve the ease with which accounts may use 2FA. Making 2FA methods simpler and more user friendly will help to encourage adoption and increase security on Twitter.

The report shows that by far the most popular method of 2FA is SMS, which accounts for 79.6 percent of the security-minded Twitter users. 30.9 precent use an authgentiocation app, and a tiny 0.5 percent use physical security keys. Explaining why this appears to add up to more than 100 percent, Twitter points out that "accounts can enable multiple 2FA methods".

The Account Security report is available to read here, while more transparency reports from Twitter are here.

Image credit: rafapress / Shutterstock

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