Online miscreants took over the National Football League’s Twitter account and used it to falsely report the death of league commissioner Roger Goodell.
During the brief span that @NFL was taken over, it followed exactly one new Twitter account—specifically, @IDissEverything, which has now been suspended.
Before the account was suspended, it claimed the password protecting the NFL Twitter feed was “olsen3culvercam88.” The Daily Dot said someone connected to the IDissEverything account claimed the password was revealed after someone managed to get into the email of a social media staffer at the NFL, where we found the credentials in a message.” It’s still not clear how the group got access to the e-mail account.
Tuesday’s breach was only the latest one to affect a high-profile Twitter user.
Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently saw his dormant Twitter account taken over by someone who discovered its password—”dadada”—was the same one that protected his LinkedIn account. Zuckerberg’s LinkedIn account, in turn, had been compromised in a 2012 breach of the career networking site. Other celebrities, including Kate Perry, Lana Del Rey, and Kylie Jenner have also reportedly had their Twitter accounts taken over in recent days.
In 2012 and 2013, a long list of news organizations also saw their Twitter accounts hijacked by a group calling itself the Syrian Electronic Army. When the group took over the Twitter account of the Associated Press, it used the unauthorized access to send a bogus report falsely claiming that the White House had been bombed and President Obama was injured.
Twitter provides two-factor authentication through a smartphone app that makes account takeovers much harder to carry out. Users who are willing to divulge their phone number to the microblogging service should strongly consider using it.