With practically every social networking website trying to get back into the good graces of its users, after it was revealed that Facebook, Google, and others had been compromised by the NSA, Twitter is also tightening its own security against the government agency.
Since the NSA’s PRISM program was revealed earlier this year, Twitter has been viewed as one of the few social media companies that has not been pushed around by the government spy group. The NSA has likely tried to gain access to Twitter in the past but it seems to have had a hard time doing so.
The company, which recently celebrated its Initial Public Offering on the stock market, has implemented a “perfect forward secrecy.” This new layer of security on its network should be able to protect users against any unwanted spying.
What’s nice about this new form of security is that the data encryption is based around two short-lived keys which cannot be attained at a later date for decryption. This is different from the current form of encryption which uses one secret key that is never actually changed, making it possible for someone to hack into Twitter, attain that key, and decrypt the encrypted information.
Even though Facebook, Google, and others have all complained about the NSA’s spying, Twitter seems to be one the first companies to come out with a new form of security specifically meant to protect against the government agency. In doing so, the social network is also suggesting that other sites begin to implement a similar form of encryption. Google and Yahoo have looked at ways to strengthen their own security but it does not appear as though they have taken it as far as Twitter.
Since August, the Electronic Frontier Foundation has promoted this form of perfect forward secrecy, since it makes the NSA’s chance of attaining information minimal at best.