The story begins with me losing access to my Twitter account.
Please be informed that I used Twitter only on my laptop to control my rants since the phone is always in my hands. But one unfortunate day recently, I don’t exactly remember why, I ended up logging out of Twitter on my laptop. When I tried to log back in the next day, I was unable to receive the verification code on my mobile number. Because I had activated the two-factor authentication (2FA), I was required to enter two codes to access my account — one that I received via email, and another that I should have received on my mobile number.
At first, I thought there must be some glitch on the service provider’s end and contacted Telenor’s helpline. They insisted, however, that there were no issues with the service. I then reached out to Hija Kamran, a former colleague who happens to be an expert on digital safety, in the hope of some help. To my horror, Hija told me that Twitter had suspended the 2FA services contract with telecommunication companies around the world, and there was no immediate solution to the problem.
I thought I had embarrassed myself once again, as I have already lost a Twitter account with 130,000 followers in the past after deactivating it and not bothering to log in within 30 days. Although losing access to my account wasn’t entirely new to me, I didn’t want to lose my social network (comprising more than 13,000 followers) that I have built from scratch on the tweeting platform this time.
Adding to my worries was the fact that Twitter’s new owner Elon Musk’s chaotic management has turned the company upside down. Since Musk’s $44 billion takeover in October last year, one has only been hearing dramatic stories about how crucial teams are being slashed at the firm and employees are departing in droves. In fact, at one point, both users and experts started speculating a global outage after engineers responsible for preventing service disruptions vacated the premises in protest against the billionaire’s erratic decisions. I, as you might already have guessed, naturally started to wonder whether my query would receive a human response at the troubled platform at all.
I hopped on to Twitter Support and started explaining my problem to them. Initially, they would send me automated responses outlining the steps I should have taken, but, to be honest, they were not quite as helpful as Twitter would like to believe they are (you better take note of that, blue birdie).
After Googling my problem several times and watching a dozen videos, I realised that I’d really have to keep badgering the Twitter Support team in order to attract their attention. The next thing I knew, I was sending them an email almost every day with screenshots of my older tweets as well as screen recordings of myself trying to log into my account to prove that it belonged to me, and that the account could only be retrieved if 2FA on it was deactivated.
My perseverance paid off and, finally, I received the news I had so desperately been waiting for. Twitter had deactivated 2FA on my account and I was able to access it again (insert happy tears!).
I let out a mighty sigh of relief. Knowing how the Twitter Support staff have been reduced by large numbers since Musk took over the company, I had been fearing my chances of recovering my account were slim. All the same, I persisted in reaching out to Twitter Support, tagging all the essential proofs and eventually finding success.
But is my account secure any more? I don’t think so!