Twitter Hacked Again? Security Issues Continue

December 29, 2009

3:11 pm

TwitterTake it from someone who knows, as last night before getting my beauty sleep I got 10 emails from Twitter. They read something like this:

Hey there.

Due to concern that your account may have been compromised in a phishing attack that took place off-Twitter, your password was reset. Please create a new password by opening this link in your browser:

It had a link to go reset my password so in the interest of security, I did as they recommended.  However, even after doing so, I kept receiving the emails for a bit.  While walking by my “office” I noticed my Tweetdeck application had a message on the screen stating I had reset my password and to re-enter.  I thought this was odd, since I had not reset this particular password  …. hmmm, strange.  I got a bit concerned so I went to the Twitter web page to reset my password.  However, this led me nowhere.  When I entered my email address to reset my password I get this lovely message

Locked out!

We’ve temporarily locked your ability to reset passwords. Please chillax for a few, then try again.

That’s reassuring isn’t it? So I can only assume Twitter had some sort of security breach as I DID NOT respond to any phishing emails … I think someone over there needs to come clean as there are others have the same issues according to this post over at CenterNetworks.

Since I have multiple Twitter accounts I was able to log in and open a support ticket, but I am not too confident in a quick resolution for some reason.

Anyone else out there having these issues?  We would love to hear about them, drop a comment below.

UPDATE:  Well I wanted to report back.  I got my support case answered.  This was the reason my account password was reset

We reset your password because your account is hooked up to “get followers” programs which are against the Twitter Rules (http://help.twitter.com/forums/26257/entries/18311) and Automation Rules and Best Practices (http://help.twitter.com/forums/10711/entries/76915). You should have gotten an e-mail regarding this, I think.

I am not sure what this exactly means (in all fairness I have not read the above links) but in any case I did not think I was part of any “get followers” scam.  Honestly, those who know me best know that I actually eschew followers 😉  I discourage followers !  In any case with the help of a good rep, his name was tiger (I wont touch that one) he help me reset my password and I am back.

The one thing that does bother me though still  is the fact that I supposedly was sent an email detailing my infractions ?  Never got one.  And it all just seemed very suspicious last night on the heels of all the phishing emails etc.

Any other updates from you all ?

UPDATE 2:  Well I would like to tell you all of this nonsense is over … but alas I cannot.  Starting about 20 minutes ago, I started receiving the rash emails saying I need to go reset my password, here it is

Due to concern that your account may have been compromised in a phishing attack that took place off-Twitter, your password was reset. Please create a new password by opening this link in your browser:

This will reset your password. Remember to choose a strong password that is a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols. Do not reuse your old password.

As a reminder, you should be extraordinarily suspicious of any third party that offers to artificially inflate your follower count. We do not endorse any of these sites.

Please make sure to:

  • Scan your computers for viruses / malware, especially if unauthorized tweets continue to be posted in your accounts even after you’ve changed the password.
  • Check the Connections page at http://twitter.com/account/connections and revoke the access privileges of any third party applications that you do not recognize.
  • Avoid providing your username and/or e-mail and password to untrusted third-party sites.
  • Remove any updates that you did not post personally; leaving these updates can result in your account being re-suspended.

You can also visit our help page for hacked or compromised accounts

Seriously, WTF is going on here.  I have disabled ALL third party applications and reset my password.  This is getting very very old Twitter.  It seems like there is something really amiss over there and they need to communicate.

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Jimmy Gardner is a Senior Unix/Windows Engineer, a lover of technology and photography. Follow him online at @jjgardner3 and enjoy his portfolio at jjg3photo.com/.

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