Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Threat Intelligence

12/18/2018
04:00 PM
Kelly Sheridan
Kelly Sheridan
Quick Hits
Connect Directly
Twitter
LinkedIn
Google+
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Twitter Hack May Have State-Sponsored Ties

A data leak was disclosed after attackers targeted a support form, which had "unusual activity."

Twitter has disclosed a data leak related to a bug in one of its support forms and now suspects the activity could be the work of nation-state actors.

On Nov. 15, 2018, the social platform learned of a problem in a support form used by account holders to report issues to Twitter. The bug could be used to learn the country code of phone numbers associated with different accounts, as well as whether the account had been locked. Twitter locks accounts if they appear to be compromised or violate its rules or terms of service.

The issue was resolved by Nov. 16. Since then, Twitter has been investigating its origin and background. In a support page published on Dec. 17, it reports "unusual activity" involving the affected support forum's API, particularly a large number of inquiries coming from individual IP addresses located in China and Saudi Arabia.

"While we cannot confirm intent or attribution for certain, it is possible that some of these IP addresses may have ties to state-sponsored actors," the support page explains.

Compared with breaches stemming from other social platforms – the September Facebook breach, for example, or the recent  Google+ vulnerability – this incident puts less personal data at risk. However, the nature of activity surrounding this issue is concerning. Country codes can be used by nation-states to map the general location of people they might want to pursue.

Twitter reports no action is required by account holders and the problem has been resolved.

"We are providing this broader notice as it is possible that other account holders we cannot identify were potentially impacted," officials write. Affected users have been informed.

Related Content:

Kelly Sheridan is the Staff Editor at Dark Reading, where she focuses on cybersecurity news and analysis. She is a business technology journalist who previously reported for InformationWeek, where she covered Microsoft, and Insurance & Technology, where she covered financial ... View Full Bio
 

Recommended Reading:

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
COVID-19: Latest Security News & Commentary
Dark Reading Staff 5/28/2020
The Problem with Artificial Intelligence in Security
Dr. Leila Powell, Lead Security Data Scientist, Panaseer,  5/26/2020
10 iOS Security Tips to Lock Down Your iPhone
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  5/22/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
How Cybersecurity Incident Response Programs Work (and Why Some Don't)
This Tech Digest takes a look at the vital role cybersecurity incident response (IR) plays in managing cyber-risk within organizations. Download the Tech Digest today to find out how well-planned IR programs can detect intrusions, contain breaches, and help an organization restore normal operations.
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-13693
PUBLISHED: 2020-05-29
An unauthenticated privilege-escalation issue exists in the bbPress plugin before 2.6.5 for WordPress when New User Registration is enabled.
CVE-2020-13173
PUBLISHED: 2020-05-28
Initialization of the pcoip_credential_provider in Teradici PCoIP Standard Agent for Windows and PCoIP Graphics Agent for Windows versions 19.11.1 and earlier creates an insecure named pipe, which allows an attacker to intercept sensitive information or possibly elevate privileges via pre-installing...
CVE-2019-6342
PUBLISHED: 2020-05-28
An access bypass vulnerability exists when the experimental Workspaces module in Drupal 8 core is enabled. This can be mitigated by disabling the Workspaces module. It does not affect any release other than Drupal 8.7.4.
CVE-2020-11082
PUBLISHED: 2020-05-28
In Kaminari before 1.2.1, there is a vulnerability that would allow an attacker to inject arbitrary code into pages with pagination links. This has been fixed in 1.2.1.
CVE-2020-5357
PUBLISHED: 2020-05-28
Dell Dock Firmware Update Utilities for Dell Client Consumer and Commercial docking stations contain an Arbitrary File Overwrite vulnerability. The vulnerability is limited to the Dell Dock Firmware Update Utilities during the time window while being executed by an administrator. During this time wi...