Hackers concerned within the high-profile hijacking of Twitter accounts earlier this week had been younger friends with no hyperlinks to state or organised crime, The New York Times reported Friday. The assault, which Twitter and federal police are investigating, began with a playful message between hackers on the platform Discord, a chat service in style with players, in keeping with the Times. The paper mentioned it had interviewed 4 individuals who participated within the hacking, who shared logs and screenshots backing up their accounts of what occurred.
“The interviews indicate that the attack was not the work of a single country like Russia or a sophisticated group of hackers,” the Times reported.
“Instead, it was done by a group of young people – one of whom says he lives at home with his mother – who got to know one another because of their obsession with owning early or unusual screen names, particularly one letter or number, like @y or @6.”
“Based on what we know right now, we believe approximately 130 accounts were targeted by the attackers in some way as part of the incident,” Twitter mentioned in a tweet.
“For a small subset of these accounts, the attackers were able to gain control of the accounts and then send Tweets from those accounts.”
Posts attempting to dupe folks into sending hackers the digital foreign money bitcoin had been tweeted by the official accounts of Apple, Uber, Kanye West, Bill Gates, Barack Obama and plenty of others on Wednesday.
Twitter mentioned it seemed to be a “coordinated social engineering attack by people who successfully targeted some of our employees with access to internal systems and tools.”
‘Original Gangster’ accounts
Fraudulent posts, which had been largely deleted, mentioned folks had 30 minutes to ship $1,000 in cryptocurrency bitcoin, promising they might obtain twice as a lot in return. More than $100,000 value of bitcoin was despatched to e mail addresses talked about within the tweets, in keeping with Blockchain.com, which displays crypto transactions.
The younger hackers interviewed by the Times mentioned a mysterious consumer who glided by the identify “Kirk” initiated the scheme with a message and was the one with entry to Twitter accounts.
They contended they had been solely concerned in commandeering lesser-known Twitter accounts, significantly to swipe coveted quick handles similar to an “@” signal and single letters or numbers that might simply be offered, in keeping with the report.
The younger hackers maintained they stopped serving as middlemen for “Kirk” when high-profile accounts turned targets.
Some hackers are “obsessed” with hijacking “Original Gangster” social media accounts staked out within the providers’ early days which have quick profile names, in keeping with Brian Krebs of Krebs on Security.
“Possession of these OG accounts confers a measure of status and perceived influence and wealth in SIM swapping circles, as such accounts can often fetch thousands of dollars when resold in the underground,” Krebs mentioned in a publish.
Hackers concerned within the assault on Twitter marketed account names at an OGusers.com web site, asking for cost in bitcoin, in keeping with the Times report.
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