What the heck has happened on Twitter?
Twitter accounts, owned by politicians, celebrities, and large organisations suddenly started tweeting messages to their many millions of followers, at the behest of hackers.

What did the messages say?
Here is a typical one which appeared on the account of rapper, songwriter, and optimistic Presidential candidate Kanye West and was distributed to his almost 30 million followers.

kanye west tweet

I am giving back to my fans.

All Bitcoin sent to my address below will be sent back doubled. I am doing a maximum of $10,000,000.

[redacted bitcoin address]

Only going on for 30 minutes.

To be honest I wouldn’t put it past Kanye West to post a tweet like that…
And he has in the past been a little sloppy when choosing his passwords, but on this occasion similar messages appeared on the accounts of Joe Biden, Barack Obama, Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, Kim Kardashian, Mike Bloomberg, Uber, Apple, Coinbase, Binance, and many other verified accounts.

I am giving back to my community due to Covid-19!

All Bitcoin sent to my address below will be sent back doubled. If you send $1,000 I will send back $2,000!

Only doing this for the next 30 minutes! Enjoy.

And this, obviously, is a scam
Correct. We’ve seen cryptocurrency scams use a similar lure in the past, albeit never on this scale before. Potential victims are told that all they have to do is send X number of Bitcoin to a wallet in order to receive more Bitcoin in return. Sadly, some people fall for such confidence tricks.

So how did all these accounts get hijacked?
There are a number of ways in which online accounts can get hijacked.

These include, for instance:

  • You might have made the mistake of reusing your Twitter password (Read more...)