A LinkedIn breach that compromised 6.5 million passwords spiraled into a security frenzy this week when Last.fm and eHarmony also suffered from password hacking attacks. Facebook, so far in the clear, has today gone on the offensive with improved mobile security features.
Facebook added new security features, including account lock down and password reset via mobile, to protect the nearly 500,000 people that access the social network from mobile devices each day.
For Android owners, Facebook has made its extra, opt-in login step, called “Login Approvals,” a bit more convenient. Facebook users who turn on login approvals are required to enter a security code each time an unrecognized computer or device tries to access their accounts. Now, members on Android can more easily retrieve the codes through the Facebook mobile application, instead of needing to wait for an SMS.
On the mobile clean-up side of things, Facebook has made it possible for users to lock down their accounts from their devices should they expect a breach. Users can also now reset their passwords, clean up any damage, and more quickly get back into suspended accounts from their mobile phones. This group of features is also designed to make Facebook’s social authentication tool for verifying user identity work just as smoothly on mobile as it does on the desktop.
Also new today is a way for Facebook users accessing the social network by way of mobile browser (note: this doesn’t work in mobile apps yet) to report News Feed content as spam or hide a story. This feature replicates what users can already do on their desktop and should help the social network and its users more quickly police and eradicate spam activity that ends up on Facebook.
Thursday’s mobile improvements won’t keep mobile Facebook users completely protected, but they certainly provide a remote social networker more of the same protections and conveniences she has when in front of her computer.
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