Anonymous hackers attacked Twitter this week and may have gained access
to passwords and other information for as many as 250,000 user accounts,
the microblog revealed late on Friday.
Twitter said in a blog post
that the passwords were encrypted and that it had already reset them as a
"precautionary measure," and that it was in the process of notifying
The blog post noted recent revelations of
large-scale cyber attacks against the New York Times and the Wall Street
Journal, but unlike the two news organizations, Twitter did not provide
any detail on the origin or methodology of the attacks.
attack was not the work of amateurs, and we do not believe it was an
isolated incident," Twitter said. "The attackers were extremely
sophisticated, and we believe other companies and organizations have
also been recently similarly attacked."
Privately held Twitter,
which has 200 million active monthly users, said it was working with
government and federal law enforcement officials to track down the
The company did not specifically link the attacks to
China in the blog post, in contrast to the New York Times and the Wall
Street Journal, which both said the hackers originated in China.
the social network known for its 140-character messages, could not
speculate on the origin of the attacks as its investigation was ongoing,
said spokesman Jim Prosser.
"There is no evidence right now that would indicate that passwords were compromised," said Prosser.
attack is not the first time that hackers have breached Twitter's
systems and gained access to Twitter user information. Twitter signed a
consent decree with the Federal Trade Commission in 2010, subjecting the
company to 10 years of independent privacy reviews, for failing to
safeguard users' personal information.
© Thomson Reuters 2013