We’ve received multiple tips right around 10 pm that Twitter was hacked and defaced with the message below. The site is currently offline. We’re looking into this and waiting on a response from Twitter.
The message reads:
Iranian Cyber Army
THIS SITE HAS BEEN HACKED BY IRANIAN CYBER ARMY
U.S.A. Think They Controlling And Managing Internet By Their Access, But THey Don’t, We Control And Manage Internet By Our Power, So Do Not Try To Stimulation Iranian Peoples To….
NOW WHICH COUNTRY IN EMBARGO LIST? IRAN? USA?
WE PUSH THEM IN EMBARGO LIST
Update: – We have just found out that the same defacement is appearing at at least one other site, mawjcamp.org. We are not able to see what was at this domain before, but it is now displaying the same defacement that Twitter was only a few minutes ago.
Twitter does not have the best record with security issues. We have previously covered a number of incidents, and as recently as two months ago their web servers were misconfigured to reveal detailed internal network information. We also previously wrote about their admin interface having a password of ‘password’ on one account, and the well-known Twitter doc incident. It was hoped that with the hiring of a new COO, Dick Costolo, as well as a number of other high-level engineers, including security experts, that Twitter had grown out of the phase of being vulnerable to security incidents on such a large scale.
We do not know a lot about the group claiming responsibility for the attack as we haven’t heard their name before and they do not show up in any defacement mirrors or security sites. Similar Iranian groups were active during the election campaign in that country. We have emailed the group (they were kind enough to leave an address on the defacement) for a comment (also added them on Gchat – worth a shot).
Update II: Twitter.com is down, status.twitter.com is down (not useful, perhaps they should host it at blogger). Some tweets are getting through at the moment because parts of the API are up. Search also seems to be working. The Firehose is up – Tweets are coming in from FriendFeed (all those tweets about ‘is twitter down’ are from third-party sites)
Update III: It is suggested that if you use the same password on your Twitter account with other accounts, now would be a good time to change your password on those other accounts. Because of the scale of this hack, it can only be assumed right now that Twitter has been completely compromised.
Update IV: There is a history between Iran and Twitter. It was well noted and covered in the media that Twitter was used as a tool during the Iranian election protests. The US government actually intervened to assure that Twitter was available to the protestors in Tehran and around the country. This attack may be an act of reprisal from groups who were not happy with the role that Twitter played during the protests