For a few glorious hours last night, Prznint McTweeter was silenced on Twitter:
“Unknown hackers plunged Twitter into chaos on Wednesday evening, commandeering the accounts of high-profile politicians and other famous figures in a massive breach that forced the social network to severely curtail access and disrupted everything from news coverage to government tornado warnings.
It was a strangely democratic moment (little dee) as the great un-washed spoke up.
“The fraudulent tweets sent from the accounts of high-profile figures such as former President Barack Obama, presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg, former Microsoft CEO Bill Gates and rapper Kanye West asked people to send Bitcoin contributions to a mysterious address, with promises of doubling them. In a number of cases, the hackers pinned the tweets to the top of victims’ accounts, raising their visibility.
On the face of it, this attack was all about scamming money from some rubes. But the victims—in particular that Joe Biden’s account was compromised—means that any hacker who can tweet from an account could probably read and copy private direct messages. Or send them.
Well played, Mr. Putin.