By Thomas Claburn
January 5, 2009
Twitter's security melted down on Monday in the face of a phishing
campaign directed at Twitter users and the hacking of Twitter's support
The security failure has resulted in the temporary takeover of Twitter
accounts associated with Facebook, Fox News, The Huffington Post, Barack
Obama, Britney Spears, and CNN's Rick Sanchez.
The phishing campaign was first reported on Saturday. Tech blogger Chris
Pirillo warned that he had received a direct message from one of his
Twitter followers advising him to visit sites designed to look like
Twitter's logon page that smelled "phishy."
"The message bears a link to a Web site that only appears to come from
Twitter but is of course a scam Web site where your account information
will be stolen,"Symantec (NSDQ: SYMC) researcher Marian Merritt
explained in a blog post.
On Monday, Twitter acknowledged that it was having other security
problems. "A number of high-profile Twitter accounts were compromised
this morning, and fake/spam updates were sent on their behalf," Twitter
said in a blog post. "We have identified the cause and blocked it. We
are working to restore compromised accounts."
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