Twitter Accounts Got Hacked Once Again And This Time Nazi Spam Littered The Feeds

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Mar 15, 2017
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Last night a third-party Twitter tool breach took place and this resulted in a Nazi spam across some very high profile accounts. Twitter counter acknowledged that the breach took place and said that the company has “taken measures to contain such abuse.” It also said, “Assuming this abuse is indeed done using our system, we’ve blocked all ability to post tweets and changed our Twitter app key. The Twitter Counter application is blocked on Twitter. If this activity continues, then we strongly believe it’s not just through us.”

Twitter and Nazi spam

The Twitter Counter is an analytics and statistics service and according to company claims, it does not store information like credit card details or Twitter account credentials. However, this particular breach allowed the hackers to get access to the feeds of people who had linked their Twitter accounts to the Twitter Counter. This isn’t the first time that something like this happened. Last year in November a similar breach took place.

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Security analyst, Graham Cluley was also a victim of this spam. He got off a plane and found that his Twitter feed was filled with Nazi spam and Turkish hashtags. In a blog post he wrote, “Some people on Twitter speculated that maybe I had clicked on a dodgy link, or foolishly not followed my own advice to ensure that Login Verifications was enabled on my account. But no, I hadn’t clicked on any dodgy links (I’d been up in a plane with no data!), and of course I protect every online account I can with two-factor authentication or two-step verification.” He further added, “I gave Twitter Counter access to my account in October 2014, and that clearly was a decision I now regret. Twitter Counter requests read *and* write access to your Twitter account, in order to do its jiggery pokery counting your Twitter followers. Why it would need write access, unless it is planning its own self-promotion, I can’t say.”

Other spammed accounts

The breach also hit BBC North America, World Meteorological Organization, Blockchain, tennis player Boris Becker, Justin Bieber’s Japanese account and the Atlanta Police Department. According to NBC, the tweets seem to be supporting the Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who is currently in a battle with the Dutch government. Erdogan had referred the Dutch government as “Nazi remnants and fascists” in response to the government’s action of blocking a Turkish minister’s visit to the country’s consulate in Rotterdam.

Twitter is now pointing the users to its support website that is giving the following recommendation:
“Be cautious before giving third-party applications access to your account [and] review third-party applications that have access to your account from time to time.” To prevent any unauthorized access to the app, log in to your account, click your profile photo, select Settings & Privacy>Apps. Here you will be able to see all the apps that have been linked to your account and you can change whichever you no longer wish to use.

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