Published: Thu, February 15, 2018
Research | By Jody Lindsey

Facebook's two-factor authentication system auto-posts replies on your profile

Facebook's two-factor authentication system auto-posts replies on your profile

THE SOCIAL NETWORK Facebook has been accused of spamming users of its two-factor authentication (2FA) service.

Two-factor authentication, or 2FA, is used to add an extra layer of security to online accounts.

"This is disgusting. You give Facebook your phone number for login authentication; instead, it abuses it to SMS spam to drive up "engagement", and when you reply to spam, is posts it on your wall", said Tufecki. What's more, when I try replying to a login code SMS, the text messages simply fail to send, so nothing appears on my Facebook wall. Check out Lewis's screenshots to see this in action. Following a report that it has lost more than 2,8 million younger users previous year to other platforms, the social media giant is doing everything in its power to win those users back. Significantly, he had never opted to enable text message notifications.

"This is how a business model can be so poisonous and harmful. Then they posted my replies on my wall", he wrote on Twitter. Facebook is now embroiled in a number of class-action lawsuits over alleged violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, or TCPA, which states that no company may contact you via text without being given express permission first.

FACEBOOK's two-factor authentication (2FA) is driving some users insane by spamming SMS notifications to the phone number they registered with.

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It remains uncertain whether Facebook's spammy behavior is a bug or whether it's a way to deliberately push users to post more often on the site. If the company is indeed intentionally using 2FA phone numbers to lure users back to Facebook without getting those users' express user consent, it could open the company up to lawsuits.

But, he isn't alone: Users have sprung up on Twitter to say that both Facebook and Instagram have spammed them with messages.

One such notification prompts users to click a button to log in, but it also advises them to let Facebook know if they weren't trying to log in.

"Abusing a security technology like [two-factor authentication] by turning it into a marketing opportunity is pretty much the most short-term clever, long-term foolish thing Facebook could do".

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