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Most brazen attack’: What Twitter hack tells us about online security — and should you be worried?

The latest social engineering attack is clear evidence that for all the robust network architecture one is able to develop, you cannot truly factor for human error.
The Twitter accounts of several high-profile personalities and major companies were compromised on Wednesday in what is believed to be the worst cyberattack that social media giant, Twitter, has faced in its history. The security breach involved a phishing scam whereby scammers aimed to convince individuals into sending Bitcoin to a fake account, and, reportedly, fetched the perpetrators just under $120,000 in six hours. Twitter hack tells us about online security

The profiles of notable personalities like former US Vice-President Joe Biden, tech mogul Elon Musk, rapper and entrepreneur Kanye West, former Microsoft CEO and philanthropist Bill Gates, and former US President Barack Obama, among several others, were commandeered for hours, prompting Twitter to take the unprecedented step of suspending all verified accounts temporarily, as it scrambled to investigate the hack and regain control of the platform. Twitter hack tells us about online security

Several law enforcement agencies including the US’ Federal Bureau of Ihttps://newstimeindia.in/

nvestigation, have now opened probes into how the scam artists, not believed to be state-sponsored, managed to identify and exploit vulnerabilities in Twitter’s security mechanisms. While Twitter hasn’t divulged much information around the hack just yet, it did confirm that the hackers managed to get a hold of internal employee access tools, leading to alarm among online privacy researchers and cybersecurity researchers, over t
What does this mean for Twitter?

The latest hack that some have called “the most brazen online attacks in recent history,” has serious implications for Twitter. Many have already noted how it may have been far worse, given the kind of extensive access that the hackers gained, and some have even stated that it isn’t safe to assume that other Twitter users’ personal and sensitive information was not compromised as well. Twitter hack tells us about online security

Worryingly, Twitter has failed to confirm whether user passwords were stolen stating only that it did not, currently, have “evidence that attackers accessed passwords.” It is worth noting that unlike Facebook’s WhatsApp, direct messages on Twitter are not end-to-end encrypted – something that several lawmakers have now brought into the spotlight.

With Twitter being one of the largest online communities, if not the largest, where millions of users share information and views, while engaging in debate and discussion, some have questioned why the company’s employees have unrestricted access to any and all accounts, and why there isn’t greater oversight and dilligence over who is able to access what.

The latest social engineering attack, if indeed it did involve hackers convincing or bribing Twitter employees to provide access tools, as reported by Motherboard, is clear evidence that, for all the robust network architecture one is able to develop, one cannot truly factor for human error. What’s more, this isn’t the first time that Twitter has been the victim of a high-profile hack, with its own CEO, Jack Dorsey’s account hacked as recently as August 2019.

Given the immense power that now dwells in social media platforms like Twitter that, in effect, function as online monopolies in many ways, one does wonder whether the existence of such vulnerabilities could have far more grim consequences, especially as they relate to election meddling and the propagation of dangerous misinformation. As such, the latest takeover is only likely to further re-invigorate lawmakers who have long been calling for greater transparency and protection over user data held by social media behemoths like Twitter.


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