Hackers successfully got into many verified accounts as part of a mass Bitcoin scam. Ultimately, many accounts, even if they weren’t hacked, ended up being shut down temporarily as Twitter attempted to fix the issue. Kanye West, Elon Musk, Barack Obama, and more were all part of this mass hack that Twitter’s blaming on a “coordinated social engineering attack” on their employees.
“We detected what we believe to be a coordinated social engineering attack by people who successfully targeted some of our employees with access to internal systems and tools,” they said in a Twitter thread. “We know they used this access to take control of many highly-visible (including verified) accounts and Tweet on their behalf. We’re looking into what other malicious activity they may have conducted or information they may have accessed and will share more here as we have it.”
The accounts that were hacked were all verified. Tweets were sent from these accounts instructing people to send bitcoin to an address in order to get free bitcoin in return. Twitter acknowledged that many accounts that weren’t affected by the hack were shut down, explaining that they needed to use this “disruptive” method. “This was disruptive, but it was an important step to reduce risk,” they added. “Most functionality has been restored but we may take further actions and will update you if we do.”