Twitter Security Fell Short Before Celebrity Hack, New York Regulator Says

Social

Twitter suffered from cybersecurity shortfalls that enabled a “simple” hack attributed to a Florida teenager to take over the accounts of several of the world’s most famous people in July, according to a report released on Wednesday.

The report by New York’s Department of Financial Services recommended that the largest social media companies be deemed systemically important, like some banks following the 2008 financial crisis, with a dedicated regulator monitoring their ability to combat cyberattacks and election interference.

“That Twitter was vulnerable to an unsophisticated attack shows that self-regulation is not the answer,” said Linda Lacewell, the financial services superintendent.

Twitter said it cooperated with the review and was increasing security for its teams and platform. The company has acknowledged that some employees were duped into sharing account credentials prior to the hack.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said the report demonstrated a “regulatory gap” and pledged the state would take the lead in introducing measures to protect users.

Cuomo had ordered a probe following the July 15 hack of celebrity Twitter accounts, in an alleged scam that stole more than $1,18,000 (roughyly Rs. 86,50,800) in Bitcoin.

Those whose accounts were hacked included US presidential candidate Joe Biden; former President Barack Obama, billionaires Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, and Elon Musk, singer Kanye West, and his wife Kim Kardashian, the reality TV star.

Lacewell said hackers obtained log-in credentials after calling several employees, pretending to work in Twitter’s information technology department, and claiming to be responding to problems with the company’s Virtual Private Network, which had become common because employees were working from home.

“The extraordinary access the hackers obtained with this simple technique underscores Twitter’s cybersecurity vulnerability and the potential for devastating consequences,” the report said.

Twitter’s lack at the time of a chief information security officer also made the San Francisco-based company more vulnerable, the report said.

Florida prosecutors said Graham Ivan Clark was the mastermind behind the hack, and charged the 17-year-old Tampa resident as an adult with 30 felonies.

Clark has pleaded not guilty. Federal prosecutors charged two others with aiding the hack.

© Thomson Reuters 2020


Is OnePlus 8T the best ‘value flagship’ of 2020? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below.

Products You May Like

Articles You May Like

Monster Hunter Trailer Sets Up the Next Action Epic From Resident Evil Duo
FIFA 21 Review: Goals Galore
Amazon Great Indian Festival Sale 2020: The Best Deals Under Rs. 5,000
Sony 55X9000H 4K HDR LED Android TV Review
Redmi Considering to Launch Small Screen Smartphone Like iPhone 12 Mini; General Manager Lu Weibing Warns of Battery Compromise

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *