With a lot of users continuing to build their online lives, the risk of putting all your personal data and information in the cyberspace is also continuing to grow synergic-ally.
However, when it comes to hackers, they could do little more than simply posting spammy links.
They can steal your identity straight away without yourself knowing about the same.
Stealing your phone number, and then reassigning the same to an altogether different SIM card to reset the password of your online networking account is like a cakewalk for them.
How do hackers manage to access the accounts?
There is a growing concern about SIM hacking around the globe.
A plethora of social media and networking websites set passwords, which are layered with an additional coating of two-factor authentication (2FA), which would verify your identity via an OTP sent to your SMS inbox.
However, with the threat of SIM hackers on the rise, this kind of password protection has become very vulnerable.
A SIM hacker can simply re-assign your phone number to his SIM card so that all the OTPs sent to your inbox, could be received by him, too.
As detailed in the Motherboard Article, Instagram accounts are especially vulnerable because the app only offers two-factor authentication through SMS that delivers a password reset or login code via text message.
Instagram to launch new features soon:
To counter this problem, Instagram is reportedly working to build a new way of authentication.
The company seems to be testing a non-SMS based two-factor authentication process which will work with security apps like Google Authenticator & Duo to prevent such SIM based-thefts or hacking.
According to a report by TechCrunch, “Buried in the Instagram Android app’s APK code is a prototype of the upgraded 2FA feature, discovered by frequent TechCrunch tipster Jane Manchun Wang. Her work has led to confirmed TechCrunch scoops on Instagram Video Calling, Usage Insights, soundtracks for stories and more.”
“We’re continuing to improve the security of Instagram accounts, including strengthening 2-factor authentication,” said the company in a statement to TechCrunch.
Through this feature, apps like Google Authenticator will generate a new token valid for a limited time-frame, and users could then, simply use username and password along with the token to safely login into their accounts.
This method will foster safety and prevent hackers from breaking into others’ accounts illegally.
Point to be noted: The option to use the SMS based 2FA will still remain as an alternative for the people wishing to use the same only.
Image Credits: Google Images
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