There’s a Twitter scare of sorts. And it’s asking you to change your password now. Thankfully, there’s no reason to panic, although it’d be prudent to pay heed and go ahead and change your Twitter password. On its official blog, Twitter has given an explanation about a bug that has caused this announcement to its 337 million users.
In its post, Twitter explains that it typically masks passwords by using a function called bcypt. As part of this process, your Twitter account password is replaced by a set of random numbers and letters on Twitter’s own systems. The advantage of such a process is that Twitter is able to authenticate your details without really revealing any of it.
However, it recently discovered a bug on its system, which resulted in transferring passwords of all its users to an internal log. Since this was happening before masking the passwords, they were essentially logged in an open text format. The micro-blogging service has claimed that it has removed all the passwords from its internal logs and system once the bug was discovered. It has also said on its post that it is taking measures to prevent a repeat of the problem in the future.
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How to keep your Twitter account safe
Twitter’s blog post goes on to add tips on how you can keep your account safe. It advises that begin by changing your password and take the same proactive steps for any other product or service you may be using which uses the same password as your Twitter account.
Twitter also recommends that you use a strong password, and rather not use the same password on other websites or services. Two-factor authentication, another industry standard feature that is available on most popular services such as Gmail, Facebook and others, and Twitter advises you to use it.
It is also recommended to use a password manager, since it pushes you to set a relatively strong, and unique password. For better passwords, you can read our handy guide on factors to consider while setting a password.