Twitter breach caused by employees who fell for social engineering scheme

That big Twitter breach earlier this week was caused by employees who fell for a social engineering scheme. Apple’s Twitter account was breached by Bitcoin scammers who also hacked the Twitter accounts of Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and Bill Gates, among others.

Apple's Twitter account has been breached by bitcoin scammers
Apple’s Twitter account was breached by bitcoin scammers

Twitter’s official blog:

At this time, we believe attackers targeted certain Twitter employees through a social engineering scheme. What does this mean? In this context, social engineering is the intentional manipulation of people into performing certain actions and divulging confidential information.

The attackers successfully manipulated a small number of employees and used their credentials to access Twitter’s internal systems, including getting through our two-factor protections. As of now, we know that they accessed tools only available to our internal support teams to target 130 Twitter accounts. For 45 of those accounts, the attackers were able to initiate a password reset, login to the account, and send Tweets. We are continuing our forensic review of all of the accounts to confirm all actions that may have been taken. In addition, we believe they may have attempted to sell some of the usernames.

For up to eight of the Twitter accounts involved, the attackers took the additional step of downloading the account’s information through our “Your Twitter Data” tool. This is a tool that is meant to provide an account owner with a summary of their Twitter account details and activity. We are reaching out directly to any account owner where we know this to be true. None of the eight were verified accounts…

The most important question for people who use Twitter is likely — did the attackers see any of my private information? For the vast majority of people, we believe the answer is, no. For the 130 accounts that were targeted, here is what we know as of today.

• Attackers were not able to view previous account passwords, as those are not stored in plain text or available through the tools used in the attack.

• Attackers were able to view personal information including email addresses and phone numbers, which are displayed to some users of our internal support tools.

• In cases where an account was taken over by the attacker, they may have been able to view additional information. Our forensic investigation of these activities is still ongoing.

MacDailyNews Take: Ay yi yi.

34 Comments

      1. I thought Hitler killed himself and his one day wife committed suicide in a bunker, no?

        Yes, your hatred and disrespect for President Donald Trump resonates loud and clear weekly and certainly you are entitled to your opinions.

        Factually, the Don pulled off the most remarkable historical win of the presidency of ALL TIME against impossible odds, to name two, the first billion dollar war chest and the endorsement of over 90% of newspaper editorials.

        Government spying on his campaign, then continued during the transition and 19 minutes after lifting his hand from the swearing in Bible the Washington Post website published a story on their website that the “Impeachment has begun.”

        To this day the majority of the media tries to beat him down DAILY for over three years including the NOTHING Mueller investigation and FAKE impeachment.

        At the very least, gotta give Don the title of the ultimate political fighter! Certainly no snowflake weenie like Dubya that stood silent while the media relentlessly attacked him at the end of his second term and drove his approval to around 30%.

        The Don in his first three years was the architect of the greatest economic turnaround in U.S. history, before the virus hit, setting several all time economic numbers.

        Bottom Line: No one has to like the man from all parties, but certainly we should be smart and appreciate the results…

          1. As is your MO, when you can’t argue one fact and have not posted one disagreement with anything posted — like a self righteous child, you resort to hurl a BLANKET snide mocking comment.

            That “dog don’t hunt” and only partisan Libtards are too stupid to know it…🤣

        1. Yes, in the end, with Allies approaching both from the East and the West, it is assumed he killed himself in his bunker. The evidence seems to support that. Opportunities to assassinate him prior to that were rejected. He was more valuable to the Allied war effort alive. Just ask Rommel.

          What is remarkable about Trump’s election, I won’t say win, winning means coming in first, is the convergence of historic trends. A perfect storm if you will. No the Electoral College doesn’t account for “winning”, it doesn’t accurately reflect the will of the Electorate. It elects.

          It’s remarkable he beat out 19 other Republicans to get the nomination. For that I will give him credit, but I also find the party quite, how shall I say… stereotypical.

          The most fake part of the impeachment was the Senate trial. Period.

          I have no respect for an unprincipled fighter that will say anything in the moment to win that moment. This is not Goldwater, who’s ideas I oppose, but respect.

  1. CEO Jack Dorsey: “We found the hacker; The hacker is us which especially and critically includes me as the guy in charge of the hackers.”

  2. Trump’s account has more protections on it than other accounts, that’s why it wasn’t hacked. probably some kind of whitelist that only allows certain devices to post.

  3. That’s a vey racist “solution.” “Black Lives Matter” was painted in blue in front of the Trump Tower in NYC. Shouldn’t we change the ____list word to bluelist? Then again, “blue” could be seen as supporting the police and we want none of that. Perhaps we should abolish the “____list” word altogether and start a search for a new word? Since finding agreement for a new word that won’t offend anyone is almost impossible, so maybe we should stop at the abolish step and simply do with one less word?

    Then again, maybe we should have patience and wait for the society’s safe-keeper, BLM, to provide input as to how this should be handled? I’m told they’re a little busy in Portland working with Antifa on some City “redesigns” and their input will be delayed until later this week.

    1. I think it is amazing that so-called conservatives are concerned with groups like Antifa–which has no more than a few hundred members in a country with 330 million folks–or BLM–which is a notion taken directly from the 14th Amendment to the Constitution and supported by millions of peaceful protesters of all races–when you aren’t concerned with a scenario straight out of the invasion of Crimea.

      Armed government secret police wearing nondescript uniforms that make it impossible to identify them either individually or even by agency are cruising around an American city in unmarked rented vans snatching people off the street. The stops, insofar as they have any pattern, seem to be targeting people based on their race, what they are wearing, or their participation in political activity the government does not like. The secret police aren’t assisting local law enforcement. Neither the local nor state authorities want them there.

      The pretext is that the secret police are “guarding federal property,” but they are operating well away from any such property, picking up “suspicious people” and dispersing crowds on the street without any clear nexus to a lawful federal purpose. In at least one case, they fired gas canisters at a crowd across the street from a federal facility and when one man holding a boom box over his head kicked away a canister that landed at his feet, they shot him in the face with a rubber bullet. He has a fractured skull and faces reconstructive surgery.

      These detentions are not investigative stops or “stop and frisk,” which could be done with reasonable suspicion. They are full-blown arrests, which should require probable cause. The people detained are being interrogated without Miranda warnings and are generally being released without charges… which shows that there was no probable cause to begin with. The purpose was simply to disrupt their political activity.

      Those who are charged are generally guilty of spray-painting graffiti, which is certainly criminal but does not justify the ten-year sentences being threatened. In most cases, the graffiti includes political messages, again raising the issue of whether particular viewpoints are being targeted.

      Ask yourselves this: if the Obama Administration had done exactly the same thing in reaction to Second Amendment protests, would conservatives be supporting the secret police then?

      1. Yes, Rightwingers and Teabagger Libertarians do not deplore Trump’s use of his Praetorian Guard which is anti-Constitutional hence against the law of the land. They also love to criticize critics of their bad behavior and language which is taken straight out of the hateful Fox playbook that is aggressively used by Praeger, Savage, Ingraham, Limbaugh, Levin, Gallagher, Hannity, O’Reiley, et ali. All offer no solutions at all; All red meat for their follower’s consumption and entertainment.

      2. These lefties are getting nabbed for firebombing buildings, caching weapons, attacking police and police stations, assaulting innocent citizens and being all around pieces of garbage. Basic law enforcement isn’t the Gestapo or NKVD, progs have to follow the law too TxLiar.

        1. NickNick, it may well be that somebody is doing all the bad things that you list. The problem is that there is no evidence—zilch, nada, zippo—that the individual US citizens being detained have done more than spray graffitti, and in many cases not even that. They may well be “all around pieces of garbage,” but that isn’t listed as a crime in any federal statute.

          When the government can send secret police to arrest citizens for their perceived political opinions without any evidence that they have personally committed a crime, that isn’t “basic law enforcement.” It is precisely what the Gestapo and NKVD did. I speak as somebody who trained peace officers and defended them in court for thirty years.

          Real conservatives should be howling their heads off about this.

      3. “ Stephen Vladeck, a constitutional law expert at the University of Texas School of Law, said the most important takeaway from the Portland situation is that “we should not be allergic to the idea that federal officers are allowed to enforce federal laws in our cities. What we should be allergic to is federal officers abusing their authority by arresting protesters who have broken no laws, and doing so in a manner in which it’s not clear what they were arrested for or by what authority.

        The critical question we should all be asking is, which one of those two scenarios are we talking about in Portland?”

        Vladeck wrote extensively about the situation Friday. Many more details are needed, he said, to fully understand what happened and the legal implications of it.

        With your usual confirmed insider information, let’s suggest that Stephen give you a call, so he can be brought up to speed. Apparently, he’s been stuck in his office in Austin.

        1. Ronner, I’m not sure you read the same article that Professor Vladeck wrote.

          https://www.lawfareblog.com/what-heck-are-federal-law-enforcement-officers-doing-portland

          Yes, he says that it is possible to imagine a set of facts under which the federal actions in Portland would be legal, but the circumstances look highly suspicious. He asks six questions that need to be answered. He then says, ”Whatever the answers to the above questions, there ought to be common cause on the need to hear them. The federal government does not seem especially inclined to volunteer answers, which leaves things to Congress or the courts.”

          In a constitutional republic, the burden should be on the government to justify its actions that affect the liberty of individual citizens, not on the affected citizens to prove that the deprivation of liberty is unjustified. It should not take an act of Congress or a lawsuit to force the government to justify its actions. Yet that seems to be the case here.

          The Professor concludes, “There’s definitely reason to be alarmed about what’s going on in Portland. And even if the federal officers are technically complying with the relevant statutes, there’s something more than just unseemly about camouflaged officers who refuse to identify themselves or their employer purporting to conduct arrests on the streets of American cities. Whether these officers are in fact abusing their authorities or not remains to be seen, but either answer would be deeply troubling.”

        1. Just because Donald Trump or Bill Barr claim that somebody is “antifa” does not mean that the person himself would use that term, much less that he belongs to some disciplined national group of terrorists. There aren’t that many riots around the country. There are scattered episodes of violence, mostly vandalism, against a background of large peaceful protests. The narrative of widespread violence is being pushed for political advantage by those who are far more interested in imposing order than in following laws.

          1. What some are calling vandalism and property destruction are just painting and sculpture classes held for the people that have no jobs. The classes give the students the opportunity to work on a large scale and in both 2 and 3D. Most of the canvases are buildings and monuments, so the students create large works that remain with the city where class is held. There’s no charge, except for the cost of some materials and for possible bail or fines.

            Once in a life-time experience to work with other students from all over the country. Bring masks, goggles, sledge hammers, torches and any/all knowledge of pyrotechnics. Classes are loosely organized and can last anywhere from one night to 2 months. Free yourself from the scrutiny of mingling in this time of the Virus. No judgement. Creativity Through Destruction!

          2. Ahuh…estimates of damage for Mpls alone have hit $500,000,000. Let’s wait see for the tally for those still in “process”. While waiting, let’s get the thoughts of those that have lost their little children. Though not favored much these days, let’s talk to the children and spouses who have lost their parent/spouse cop. Just a little “scattered violence” they’d say, I’m sure. I don’t think they’d give a f to quibble if it was BLM, antifa_largesmall, or any combo of people discontent with something…that so far remains ambiguous, except for defunding the cops and creating their own zones.

            Get your head out of your a.

            1. As of June 30, only two officers had been critically injured in connection with the George Floyd demonstrations. Neither died.

              http://www.milwaukeeindependent.com/featured/not-under-siege-dispelling-the-myth-that-black-lives-matter-protesters-have-targeted-police/

              As of June 18, 17 people, total, had died at or near a protest. None of them were current peace officers. No more than two or three of them were killed by people involved in the protests, less than the number killed by police and private security.

              https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/factcheck/2020/06/18/fact-check-more-black-people-killed-police-than-floyd-protests/5323116002/

        2. Sorry to say, you are wasting your time responding to a LIBERAL LIAR.

          Antifa continues to riot in dozens of cities daily and their numbers easily are in the thousands…

      4. “I think it is amazing that so-called conservatives are concerned with groups like Antifa–which has no more than a few hundred members“

        I think it is amazing a so called single white conservative Republican in Texas bashes conservatives 99.9% and supports and defends all liberal causes.

        You don’t know how many Antifa members are out there and last time I sent you several Facebook links because they have chapters all over the country try, you wrote and I quote,”anyone can start a Facebook page.”

        Enjoy your DENIAL LIBERAL LIAR…

  4. Pretty easy. Email was sent saying click here to remove conservative post, then it asked for credentials. All Twitter employees clicked and the “hackers” had all the credentials they needed.

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