On Thursday high profiles accounts such as Elon Musk, Bill Gates and Apple began tweeting a bitcoin scam. Twitter has since stopped verified accounts from tweeting in the midst of this large-scale hack.
Verified accounts can’t tweet
Twitter is yet to confirm exactly who has been impacted by the the restrictions. But it appears to just be verified accounts, also known as blue tick accounts.
In our own tests it seems that verified Twitter accounts can’t post new tweets. But they can still send DMs as well as retweet and like tweets, such as this:
Retweeting with a comment does not currently work.
The Twitter Support account acknowledged the hack earlier this morning.
“We are aware of a security incident impacting accounts on Twitter. We are investigating and taking steps to fix it. We will update everyone shortly,” the account said.
It also warned users that some may not be able to tweet or reset their passwords at the present time.
You may be unable to Tweet or reset your password while we review and address this incident.
— Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) July 15, 2020
We don’t currently know how long verified accounts will be restricted for.
Twitter Bitcoin Hack
Earlier on Thursday verified accounts with huge followings began tweeting out a bitcoin scam. This included high profile celebrities such as Kanye West, Elon Musk, Bill Gates and Barack Obama.
Even the official Apple account was hit, making this its first ever tweet. It has since been deleted.
On the plus side, Apple just made its first public tweet ever. pic.twitter.com/FfJAWi4gK3
— Quinn Nelson (@SnazzyQ) July 15, 2020
Most of the tweets were incredibly similar. They asked users to send them bitcoin, promising to send back double. This was followed by a link to a blockchain wallet.
While several different wallets have been used, the one used in the Elon Musk and Bill Gates tweets has received nearly $169,000 worth of bitcoin. Transactions still appear to be taking place at the time of writing.
Update 10:42am: Verified accounts are able to tweet again. Let the hot takes flow.
Most accounts should be able to Tweet again. As we continue working on a fix, this functionality may come and go. We're working to get things back to normal as quickly as possible.
— Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) July 16, 2020