Twitter Hacked by Iran? No Way, Say Bloggers

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Michael Arrington blogged late into the night yesterday:

We’ve received multiple tips right around 10 pm that Twitter was hacked and defaced with the message below. The site was offline for a while. ... The message read:

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….



Take Care.


There is a history between Iran and Twitter. ... 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. MORE

Lucian Parfeni adds:

Twitter doesn't have the best record when it comes to stability or security and it looks like all the recent hires haven't done much good. Twitter's famed Fail Whale doesn't show up as often as it once did, but the site still goes down.


Also targeted seems to be which is still sporting the message at this time. A cached version of the site dating from two days ago shows it has been like this for at least since then. MORE

Damon Cortesi sighs:

Dear Twitter, I urge you to please hire a CSO. A Chief Security Officer. Somebody to lead the charge and organize a security team around what is arguably one of the biggest things to happen to social media in the past 10 years. A security team to balance the risk of being completely open with our lives, happily geo-tagging our way to a billion-dollar valuation of A security team to realize that we are quickly losing any privacy we have had by opting in to the great and amazing features that you’re releasing on a daily, if not weekly, basis.


I understand you’re building some awesome business intelligence and some advertising that we’re just really going to love. But realize that you are changing the way we share data on the Internet. And not only do you need to be the leader in social media and openness, you need to be the leader in social media privacy and security. MORE

But Juha Saarinen says it wasn't a site hack, but some sort of DNS hijack: seems to be hijacked at the moment:

... 1901 IN A 3600 IN PTR MORE

Twitter's Biz Stone confirms:

As we tweeted a bit ago, Twitter's DNS records were temporarily compromised tonight but have now been fixed. As some noticed, was redirected for a while but API and platform applications were working. We will update with more information and details once we've investigated more fully. MORE

John Carnell explains:

Most people's first thought is that the servers had been compromised but in fact this wasn't your standard Hack it was a compromised DNS trick.


The best approach ... [for] hackers ... is to try and find a weak link in the chain. External servers that provide a service to Twitter are a good place to start. In his case the Hackers targeted Twitter's DNS record. ... The hackers Hijacked the DNS record and point it to a server they control. Twitters own servers were not directly compromised! ... We were VERY LUCKY the hackers were just making a point, it could of been much worse if they had setup a clone of the homepage and collected login information. MORE

This story, "Twitter Hacked by Iran? No Way, Say Bloggers" was originally published by Computerworld.

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