Twitter said on Friday that it will only allow paid subscribers to use text messaging as a two-factor authentication (2FA) method to secure their accounts.
After March 20, “only Twitter Blue subscribers will be able to use text messages as their two-factor authentication method,” the company said on Twitter.
Aimed at making accounts more secure, two-factor authentication requires the account owner to use a second verification method in addition to a password. Twitter enables 2FA via text message, authenticator app, and security key.
The company believes phone number-based 2FA is being abused by “bad actors,” according to a Wednesday blog post referenced by a company tweet.
Twitter owner Elon Musk tweeted “Yes” in response to a user’s tweet that the company was changing policy “because Telcos were using bot accounts to pump 2FA SMS” and that the company was losing $60 million a year “to fraudulent SMS.”
Previously free for verified accounts of politicians, celebrities, journalists and other public figures, Blue Tick is now available to anyone willing to pay.
Last month, Twitter said it would price its Twitter Blue subscription for Android at $11 a month, the same as for iOS subscribers.