How To Hack Into Twitter Accounts

How To Hack Into Twitter Accounts – Twitter’s systems were down on Wednesday as it tried to regain control from hackers. Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP/Getty Images

Twenty-four hours after a major security breach at Twitter saw legitimate accounts of world leaders, celebrities and corporate brands hijacked to publish fraudulent messages, few things are clear about the hack, except this: it could have been worse.

How To Hack Into Twitter Accounts

“Imagine this happening the night before an election,” said Bruce Schneier, a chief security technologist and fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School. “It doesn’t take much imagination to go, ‘Wow!’

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The hours-long outage of Twitter’s system, both from the hackers who published the messages and from Twitter as it tried to regain control, provided stark evidence of how much of the information ecosystem, especially in the United States, depends on Twitter and its system. authentication – and vulnerability, inherent in that dependence.

The failure raises many questions, including: should we still trust Twitter? And even if we don’t, what can we do about it?

Twitter has not yet released much information about the attack, other than that it was a “coordinated social engineering attack” against its own employees that allowed hackers to access the company’s internal tools and thus take control of user accounts.

“For me, the weakness is on the social side,” said Schneier, who urged the public and the press not to speculate too much about the technical details of the attack. “We rely too much on Twitter. This platform has enormous power and it’s not regulated… All you have to do is stop allowing this monopoly to exist. It’s not about Twitter; there’s only one.”

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On Friday, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said it had opened an investigation into the attack. The San Francisco office said the motivation for the attack appeared to be “cryptocurrency fraud.”

But some American legislators are also concerned about the potential consequences of the attack, which go beyond hackers who cost several hundred unfortunate victims out of $100,000. Senator Josh Hawley of Missouri called on Twitter to “give the public an account of how much private information” it. disappeared, raising questions about whether attackers stole users’ private messages, known on the platform as direct messages or DMs.

Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon revealed that Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey told him in 2018 that the company was working to bring end-to-end encryption to DMs. “It’s been nearly two years since our meeting, and Twitter’s DMs are still not encrypted, leaving them vulnerable to employees abusing their internal access to company systems and hackers gaining unauthorized access,” Wyden said. . “If hackers gain access to users’ DMs, this breach could have a dramatic impact for years to come.”

If the attack was a clear financial crime with no geopolitical motivation or implications, that would be the best case scenario. But it is still unclear if it is, or if Twitter is ready for a more complicated and scary alternative.

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On Friday afternoon, the company said it had “no evidence that the attacker had access to the password,” and that it was still investigating the attack.

Thursday’s attack created a uniquely destabilizing information event. First, the Twitter system was compromised, resulting in a tsunami of misinformation. Then, to regain control of its system, Twitter closes the ability of all verified accounts to tweet anything, allowing both victims of the attack, public officials and the news media to publish credible information and create an information vacuum. wrong

“The nightmare scenario is not someone hacking [the US Strategic Command’s Twitter account] and saying a nuclear missile was launched,” said Heather Williams, an assistant professor at King’s College London and co-author of a new report on the influence of Twitter. on diplomacy and crisis escalation. “There was someone who hacked Trump’s account and said something believable.”

“That’s the real nightmare scenario: where you really can’t tell if something is true or not,” he added.

Three Charged In July 15 Twitter Compromise

That prospect didn’t seem to stop Trump from tweeting. The White House said Friday that his account was not affected and that he would remain on the platform.

Schneier questioned why technology companies don’t have to follow the same rules as banks when it comes to allowing employees to access customer accounts. “If this was a bank, there would be a lot of rules,” he said. “More importantly, senior executives will be fired.”

“Unchecked monopoly is not good for society,” he added. “And this is an example of an unregulated monopoly gone.” Three individuals have been indicted for their alleged role in the July 15 Twitter hack, an incident that resulted in Twitter profiles for some of the world’s most recognizable celebrities, executives and public figures sending tweets that’ t promote bitcoin scams.

Nima “Rolex” Fazeli, 22, of Orlando, Fla., is charged in a Northern California criminal complaint with aiding and abetting the intentional access of a protected computer.

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Mason “Chaewon” Sheppard, 19, of Bognor Regis, U.K., was also charged in California with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, money laundering and unauthorized access to a computer.

Statement by the United States Department of Justice. on the issue did not name the third suspect charged in the case, saying that the juvenile proceedings in federal court were sealed to protect the juvenile’s identity. But the NBC News affiliate in Tampa reported today that authorities have arrested 17-year-old Graham Clark as the alleged mastermind of the hack.

17-year-old Graham Clark of Tampa, Fla. was among those accused in the July 15 Twitter hack. Image: Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.

Wfla.com says Clark was charged with 30 felonies, including organized fraud, wire fraud, one count of personal information fraud involving more than $100,000 or 30 or more victims, 10 counts of personal information fraud and one count of accessing a computer or electronic device without permission. Clark’s arrest report is available here (PDF). A statement from Florida prosecutors said Clark will be charged as an adult.

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On Thursday, Twitter released more details about how the hack went down, saying the attackers “targeted a small number of employees via phone spear phishing,” which “relied on a significant and coordinated effort to deceive certain employees and exploit human vulnerabilities.” exploit to gain access.” to our internal system.”

By targeting specific Twitter employees, perpetrators were able to gain access to internal Twitter tools. From there, Twitter said, the attackers targeted 130 Twitter accounts, tweeting from 45 of them, accessing the direct messages of 36 accounts, and downloading the Twitter data of seven.

Among the affected accounts are Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, President Barack Obama, Tesla CEO Elon Musk, former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg and investment mogul Warren Buffett.

Hacked Twitter accounts were created to send out tweets suggesting that they were giving bitcoins, and anyone who sent bitcoins to a certain account would be returned double the amount they gave. In total, the bitcoin account linked to the scam received more than 400 transfers totaling more than $100,000.

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Chaewon’s supposed Sheppard alias is mentioned here twice in the story since the July 15th incident. On July 16, shortly before the Twitter hack occurred, a member of the OGUsers social media account hacking forum named Chaewon advertised that they could change the email address associated with

Ran a story with interviews with some of the people involved in the attack. The young men told The Times that they were not responsible for the Twitter bitcoin scam and only made the purchase from the account of the Twitter hacker – whom they identified only as “Kirk”.

One of those interviewed by The Times used the alias “Ever So Anxious”, and said he was a 19-year-old from the UK. In my next story on July 22, it was revealed that Ever So Anxious is actually Chaewon.

The person who shared this information was the main subject of my July 16 post, which followed leads from a tweet sent by one of the accounts claimed during the Twitter settlement back to a 21-year-old man from the United Kingdom. who goes by the pseudonym PlugWalkJoe.

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The individual shared a series of screenshots showing him communicating with Chaewon/Ever So Anxious shortly before the Twitter hack, asking him to get some desired Twitter usernames from the Twitter hacker. He added that Chaewon / Ever So Anxious is also known as “Mason”.

Negotiations for very valuable Twitter usernames took place shortly before the hijacked celebrity accounts tweeted bitcoin scams. PlugWalkJoe is pictured here chatting with Ever So Anxious/Chaewon/Mason with his Discord username “Beyond Insane.”

On July 22, Mason/Chaewon/Ever So Anxious was interviewed, who confirmed that PlugWalkJoe had indeed asked him to ask Kirk to change the profile picture and display name for a certain Twitter account on July 15. Mason/Chaewon/Ever So Anxious admitted that while he acted as a “middle man” between Kirk and others who wanted to claim the coveted Twitter username, he had nothing to do with the hijacking of the VIP Twitter account for the bitcoin scam same day .

“Must be Kirk

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