Twitter – Tying Your Twitter Account to SMS-Enabled Phone

I tried to create a new Twitter account today but much to my surprise I could not use a phone number already in use by another Twitter account.

Moreover, the phone number has to be of an SMS-enabled phone.

I understand the need for security but you do realize that the SMS-enabled phone requirement ties your Twitter account to a particular phone. Yes?

Now, who was it that was tracking all phone traffic?

Oh, I remember, Justice Department plotting to resume NSA bulk phone records collection, it was the NSA!

The number of government mis-steps and outrages in just a few months is enough to drive earlier ones from immediate memory. It’s sad to have a government that deeply incompetent and dishonest.

The SMS-enabled phone requirement of Twitter makes binding your Twitter posts to a specific phone easy.

Although it will be portrayed as requiring sophisticated analysis tools in order to justify the NSA’s budget.

Suggestion: Twitter should display the SMS code on a page returned to the browser requesting an account.

Unless of course, Twitter has already joined itself at the hip to the NSA.

2 Responses to “Twitter – Tying Your Twitter Account to SMS-Enabled Phone”

  1. marijane says:

    It wouldn’t let you create an account at all? Last I checked (within the last two weeks, even) Twitter will let you create as many accounts as you want with just email addresses but if you want to do any development with them, each one requires their own SMS-enabled phone number. They did this to cut down on spam bots (which seems to have worked, as far as I can tell, spam bots stopped following me months ago) and I doubt it has anything to do with the NSA.

    There are workarounds. Using a Google Voice number seems to be the most popular. I’ve read that you can remove a phone number from an account profile temporarily to use it on a different account, but I haven’t tried it myself. Finally, you can set up an app in your main account and then configure other accounts to use it as a client. How to do that is explained at this link:

  2. Patrick Durusau says:


    I was trying to use one of the phone numbers associated with my main account, which reported as “invalid phone number.”

    I wanted a separate account that could not be associated, as by email, with my main twitter account. I am trying out a service that requires a Twitter login and then it mines your followers, who you follow, etc. I prefer to not entangle everyone with a service I may or may not use.

    I will try the Google Voice option and see how that works.

    You are probably right about the NSA but the tying of a Twitter or other social media accounts to SMS messages makes “connecting the dots” that much easier.