Twitter: Institute asks for an end to charging for authentication – 03/14/2023 – Mônica Bergamo

Twitter: Institute asks for an end to charging for authentication – 03/14/2023 – Mônica Bergamo

Idec (Brazilian Institute for Consumer Defense) wants the National Consumer Secretariat (Senacon) and the Social Communication Secretariat (Secom) to suspend Twitter’s decision to charge for two-factor authentication via SMS.

The technology company announced last month that it will only allow subscribers to the platform’s paid service, Twitter Blue, to use text messages as a two-factor authentication method to protect their accounts.

In the notification sent to the secretariats, the consumer protection NGO calls the change an “abusive attitude” by Twitter and argues that “safety standards are a basic right of consumers”.

Idec also asks Secom and Senacon to request clarification from Twitter and initiate a joint investigation into the collection policy.

The NGO also wants the National Consumer Secretariat to initiate an administrative process and condemn Twitter for the alleged violation of articles in the Consumer Protection Code and the Civil Rights Framework for the Internet.

Two-factor authentication is intended to make accounts more secure and requires the account holder to use a second authentication method in addition to a password. Currently, Twitter allows this validation via text message, authentication application or security key.

Twitter Blue is a subscription service offered by Twitter and arrived in Brazil in early February. If subscribed by computer, the service costs from BRL 42 per month. In mobile applications, it costs R$ 60 per month.

Idec says that the withdrawal of two-factor authentication by text message “represents the decrease in security and the irregularity in the processing of personal data”.

He continues: “By placing the security layer most used by consumers as a privilege of paying consumers, Twitter diminishes the quality of the service provided, represents a contradictory attitude on the part of the platform and violates the good faith and legitimate expectation of consumers to have their protected service”.

“The abusive attitude demonstrates the risks perpetrated by unilateral actions of digital platforms. It also highlights how we need to advance in the multisectoral debate for the regulation of digital platforms”, says the organization.


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