updated 2/14/2012 2:20:07 PM ET 2012-02-14T19:20:07

Twitter has taken a big step toward providing a safer haven for its millions of users by automatically safeguarding connections to the site with HTTPS encryption.

Introduced as an option last March, HTTPS encryption is now the default setting, meaning whenever you access Twitter, your connection will be automatically protected with the increased encryption protocol.

"HTTPS is one of the best ways to keep your account safe and it will only get better as we continue to improve HTTPS support on our Web and mobile clients," Twitter wrote  on its blog.

Although Twitter will still offer users the ability to log in without an HTTPS connection, it's not recommended; an insecure, unencrypted connection is akin to giving your house keys to a potential burglar. Cybercrime tactics such as " sidejacking " — hijacking someone's social-networking session over an insecure Wi-Fi network — are made that much easier when the victim is logged on without HTTPS encryption.

Twitter's move to protect its customers shines an unfortunate spotlight on that other popular social network and its security struggles. Facebook provides its nearly 900 million users the option to enable HTTPS encryption, but by default, it is still disabled.

© 2012 SecurityNewsDaily. All rights reserved


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