Social media and advertising giant Facebook today announced that it is now allowing mobile users to secure their accounts with the help of security keys.
Available for Facebook’s desktop users since 2017, the authentication method requires that the user confirm authentication requests with the help of a physical security key.
This additional authentication step is meant to significantly increase account protection, as it relies on the use of a physical device that an attacker is assumed to never have access to.
“Starting today, you can set up two-factor authentication and log into Facebook on iOS and Android mobile devices using a security key, available to anyone in the world,” Facebook announced.
Two-factor authentication (2FA) has evolved from codes sent via SMS or email to the use of authenticator applications and security keys, making it increasingly difficult for a threat actor to come in the possession of both the account password and the second factor.
Since 2017, Facebook has been providing users the option to enable 2FA and choose physical security keys as the second authentication factor, with that feature now available for iOS and Android users as well.
Users who may need such strong authentication protection are those most exposed to malicious attacks, including public figures, politicians, journalists, and human rights defenders, among others.
“We strongly recommend that everyone considers using physical security keys to increase the security of their accounts, no matter what device you use,” Facebook says.
Security keys can be connected either via Bluetooth or can be directly plugged into phones.
To enable the use of security keys as the authentication method, Facebook users should head over to the Security and Login section of the Settings menu.
The social platform also says it plans to expand the availability of its Facebook Protect program to include additional at-risk groups, alongside political campaigns and candidates.
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