February 16, 2016 by

Instagram Adds Two-Factor Authentication

  It’s a long due move but it’s better late than never. Social network Instagram has confirmed that it will be adding two-factor authentication as a security measure to keep millions of user accounts away from the hands of malicious hackers. At 400 million accounts and counting, with many belonging to brands, celebrities, artists and more, Instagram was always a prime target for hackers. Now, the social image sharing platform has confirmed that it will begin with its roll out of implementing two-factor authentication, according to TechCrunch. Two-factor authentication has long been a staple among popular websites including Facebook and Amazon. The security measure will now allow Instagram users to verify their accounts with a phone number. If the user’s account sees an authentication attempt to login with his or her credentials, the user will be notified of the login attempt with a verification code. This code is a mandatory key accompanying the password to gain access to a user’s account. Fundamentally, hackers who may have gained account credentials through phishing scams or other illicit methods, would be out of luck when faced with the extra security measure of having to enter a one-time passcode. The publication also made note of an early buggy test version of the two-factor security measure wherein Instagram offered users the option of two-factor reset codes when setting up an account. This code could be saved in a screenshot in case a user loses his or her phone or phone number that was originally authorized. The perils of an Instagram hack is also laid out in the article which chooses to highlight the case of an Instagram star named Rachel Ryle, an animator and storyteller who uses the platform for her illustrations. Her popularity grew to such an extent that she gained a large sponsorship with a brand. However, her Instagram account was compromised and the malicious hacker proceeded to spread spam through her account. What followed was the brand pulling out of the deal and the artist losing 35,000 followers on the platform. With two-factor authentication, the entire ordeal could have been avoided. It’s about time that Instagram got around to impelementing what is now a basic and fundamental security measure. Image credit: Pexels.

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LIFARS is a digital forensics and cybersecurity intelligence firm based in New York City. LIFARS is ranked as one of the top Digital Forensics and Cyber Investigations companies in 2016 and as one of the top cybersecurity companies in the New York metropolitan area for 2015 on the Cybersecurity 500 – a directory of the hottest and most innovative companies to watch in the cybersecurity industry.

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