“With great power comes great responsibility”. The famous spiderman quote by Peter Parker’s wise, old uncle probably didn’t had social networking platforms in its sights. Nevertheless, with the kind of data being stored online and the vast audience, the statement is truer than ever before. Understanding this, Instagram, the mecca of photo addicts, is purportedly adding another tier to its security.
As per Josh Constine of the TechCrunch, Instagram has confirmed that it is rolling out a two factor authentication system for the members of its 400 million strong community.
The two factor system had been on the cards since quite a while. Instagram’s parent company Facebook, already deploys something similar and people had been calling out from some time for the photo sharing platform to introduce this system as well.
Usually, all you need to be able to login into your — or someone else’s for that matter — account is an email Id and an associated password. While the password is certainly a safety measure, its easier to bypass than you would think — after all, stealing or coercing passwords from unsuspecting users is the bread and butter of hackers and there are quite a range of methods by which you can be relived of your password.
However, with the two tier system, you need a verified phone number in addition to the two things already mentioned, in order to be able to login. Once you have verified a phone number, Instagram sends you an OTP when you try to login, that must also be entered to login.
The OTP system should certainly make hacking accounts way more difficult, easing life for Instagramers — particularly for celebrities, brands and those who make their living of the platform. While even the average user can get into a bucket load of trouble, should his account be hacked — deleted pictures, spam on timeline and so on — celebrities and brands can get into so much more.
While celebrities can have — and have had — private pictures made public and the sort, brands have had their online image spoilt when hackers got into and used their Instagram accounts for spam, advertisements and so on. Similarly, no end of trouble can be caused to someone who uses the platform to make his/her living — say by selling, original pictures.
That said, its easy to see why Instagram two tier security was long overdue and is expected to be greeted with much enthusiasm by users of the picture based, social networking platform. As of now, we do not have an official statement on the schedule of the feature, but we hope it will be released soon. As with Facebook, the feature is expected to be optional on Instagram and users who don’t want to go to the extra hassle of checking for an OTP will probably be able to continue with the established system.