Twitter Hacked by Old Technique - Again

by CXOtoday Staff    Jul 16, 2009

Twitter, the most popular blogging site, has become victim of a security breach. This is the third time the San Francisco-based company has fallen victim of a security breach stemming from a simple end-run around its defences.

According to a source, in the latest case, a hacker got the password for an employee’s personal e-mail account, possibly by guessing or by correctly answering a security question. He then worked from there to steal confidential company documents.

"We are in touch with our legal counsel about what this theft means for Twitter, the hacker, and anyone who accepts and subsequently shares or publishes these stolen documents," Twitter said in an official blog post.

Twitter says only one user account was potentially compromised because a screenshot of the account was included among the stolen documents, however, the hacker claims to have employee salaries and credit card numbers, resumes from job applicants, internal meeting reports and growth projections.

TechCrunch, a widely-read technology blog, reported that the hacked documents were e-mailed and subsequently some were published. The document had Twitter s financial projections with a forecast envisioned Twitter generating its first revenue in the current quarter, with sales of about $400,000 and about 60 employees.

The report further elaborates that by the end of next year, Twitter expected to employ about 345 people with annual revenue of about $140 million, according to the documents published by TechCrunch

Co-founder Biz Stone wrote in a blog posting Wednesday that the personal e-mail of an unnamed Twitter administrative employee was hacked about a month ago, and through that the attacker got access to the employee’s Google Apps account.

Twitter was hit twice before this year in similar incidents.