Facebook launched two-factor authentication almost two years ago, but this week the social networking service is improving its security a little further. After an initial limited test phase in 2011, Facebook is launching Trusted Contacts globally on Thursday, a way to recover access to your account through friends that you trust. The feature works by selecting between three to five friends to add to the Trusted Contacts list. If your account gets compromised or you forget your password, these friends can help by supplying security codes.
It's an alternative to answering security questions or attempting to fill out web forms to recover accounts, but you'll have to pick your contacts wisely. Facebook will send the codes directly to a friend to then distribute to an account owner, so it's open to abuse if you pick a friend who enjoys the occasional prank. Either way, it's the digital form of leaving a spare key with a neighbor and it's an additional approach to help tackle the rise of phishing scams. You can enable Trusted Contacts in the security section of Facebook's account settings.