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Twitter links are going to be more secure beginning October 1. In a scheduled change, all new t.co type links will use the https URL scheme. However, in order to do so, links will now be increased by “a single character.”
In a post on a Twitter forum, developer advocate Niall Kennedy advises that third-party apps that have character calculations for Tweets should update their code within the next couple of weeks.
He also cautions that non-HTTPS sites could see a drop in referral traffic from Twitter as a result of this change. By the company’s estimates, traffic attribution from Twitter could decrease by 10 percent, but decrease over time “as users update their browsers to the latest versions supporting referrer policy.”
Although the move to a more secure system is good, users will have to be a bit more clever with their Tweets, especially if they are using a link. After all, it’s always that one extra character that makes a difference between a good Tweet and a frustrated one.
This isn’t the first time Twitter has made changes to its t.co wrapper. In 2012, the company extended the maximum length of links from 20 to 22 characters for non-HTTPS URLs and from 21 to 23 characters for HTTPS URLs. The difference this time around is that all the links will be moved to HTTPS URLs, thereby making all links 23 characters.
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