Twitter, the micro-blogging and social-networking site that allows users to send messages using 140 characters or less, is quite popular. In fact, Twitter says that it has 255 million monthly active users and that half a billion-yes, 500,000,000-tweets are sent daily. It is because of its wide-reaching popularity that Twitter, like other popular sites, has been targeted by hackers attempting to gain access to the accounts of others. This article will provide five steps that Twitter users can use to lock down their accounts to safeguard them from viruses.
It goes without saying that the first step people should take to lock down their Twitter accounts as part of a virus-avoidance measure is to safeguard the devices they use to access Twitter in the first place. What this means is that people can help themselves by installing antivirus software. Moreover, they should keep the software current by updating it as needed so as to protect against the ever increasing number of new threats popping up.
Twitter users who want to keep their accounts safe need to select tough passwords that will be difficult, if not impossible, to for others to guess. Studies have routinely shown that most people, despite repeated warnings, choose easy-to-guess passwords such as the name of a pet, something like "12345," or a birth date. The key is to select passwords that contain a mix of uppercase letters, lower case letters, numbers, and symbols.
Hackers looking to gain access to Twitter accounts sometimes employ phishing strategies. For instance, some determined hackers send links that, if clicked on, bring users to sites that, while looking like Twitter, are in fact decoys. People who inadvertently enter their Twitter sign-on information on fake sites all but hand hackers their account info. In order to avoid falling for phishing schemes, refrain from clicking on suspicious links and go directly to the Twitter site to sign in.
Apps can be great, but they can also be the tools through which hackers can access Twitter users' account details. For example, there are many apps out there that have malware components through which hackers can steal data. Before downloading any apps, people should do a quick online search to see whether or not anyone has had any negative experiences with these apps.
While it might be a bit inconvenient to have to log into Twitter every single time, that inconvenience is a small price to pay to keep accounts safe from viruses. People who never log out leave themselves open to being hacked. An easy way to make it more difficult for hackers to gain unauthorized access to accounts is to consciously sign on and sign off as required.
Twitter is a great tool, and the popularity of the site is undeniable. However, users need to be on their guard in order to avoid having to deal with hackers and viruses and the sorts of things that can compromise their Twitter experience. Following the aforementioned five-step guide will help people to lock down their Twitter accounts to protect them from viruses.