By reserving double account verification by SMS to Twitter Blue subscribers, Elon Musk is pursuing his objective of monetizing the social network.

Amelie Ruhlmann


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Elon Musk accuses telephone operators of taking advantage of double account verification to send fraudulent SMS. GIVEN RUVIC / REUTERS

Used by many users on social networks, the double verification system, which consists of entering a code received by SMS in addition to your password when connecting, will no longer be available for free on Twitter from March 20 , the platform announced on Friday. This feature will now be reserved for accounts that have subscribed to the paid subscription. Twitter Blue, billed eleven euros per month.

In a post published on Wednesday, Twitter justified this decision by indicating that double verification is used by “bad actors“. According to Elon Musk, managing director of the platform since last October, telephone operators would take advantage of the SMS double authentication tool to generate fictitious messages, causing the loss of “$60 million per yearto Twitter. But this decision could also be motivated by a financial imperative, while the company is experiencing a massive advertiser leak due to Elon Musk’s controversial personality.

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Anyway, this announcement is part of the manager’s desire to monetize a certain number of platform features, previously accessible for free. Last November, Twitter caused an uproar by launching its first paid subscription. The famous “badge bleu“, granted free to verified accounts of politicians, famous personalities or journalists, had become accessible to any user ready to subscribe to a premium subscription. This formula, which had led to the usurpation of numerous identities and angered advertisers, had been suspended before being relaunched in several countries, including France.

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For Twitter users who do not intend to give up double verification but who would not wish to subscribe to Twitter Blue for all that, the platform suggests alternative solutions: buy a USB key dedicated to securing their Twitter account or download a third-party application for this purpose. Security methods much more laborious than simple verification by SMS … and which may well arouse, once again, the ire of Internet users.

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