Twitter Investigation About Bitcoin Theft: Two-Factor Authentication Bypassed!

21 July 2020 Internet, IT & e-Discovery Blog Blog
Authors: Peter Vogel reported that “Twitter said its investigations so far showed that someone used social engineering to obtain credentials belonging to a small number of employees and then used those credentials to somehow bypass two-factor protections and access a key internal system.”  The July 20, 2020 article entitled “Twitter Breach Highlights Privileged Account Security Issue” included these comments:

The attackers used their access to target 130 Twitter accounts, including several belonging to high-profile individuals such as Democratic presidential hopeful Joe Biden, former president Barack Obama, and business leaders including Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, and Elon Musk. 

With 45 of the accounts, the attackers were able to reset the passwords, log into the accounts, and send out tweets — all without alerting the account owners until after the fact.

The tweets urged users to send Bitcoin to an address contained in the message within a specific period and get double the amount in return.

The Twitter attack has raised considerable concern, including among US lawmakers, because of just how influential the platform has become in recent years.

Politicians, activists, and numerous others from around the world use Twitter widely for everything from making policy announcements and communicating business and trade decisions to expressing opinions and garnering support for various cause.

Many have said the attackers could easily have used their access to create substantial havoc by tweeting misleading information on behalf of some of the most influential people on the platform.

Maybe two-factor authentication is insufficient, what do you think?

This blog is made available by Foley & Lardner LLP (“Foley” or “the Firm”) for informational purposes only. It is not meant to convey the Firm’s legal position on behalf of any client, nor is it intended to convey specific legal advice. Any opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of Foley & Lardner LLP, its partners, or its clients. Accordingly, do not act upon this information without seeking counsel from a licensed attorney. This blog is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Communicating with Foley through this website by email, blog post, or otherwise, does not create an attorney-client relationship for any legal matter. Therefore, any communication or material you transmit to Foley through this blog, whether by email, blog post or any other manner, will not be treated as confidential or proprietary. The information on this blog is published “AS IS” and is not guaranteed to be complete, accurate, and or up-to-date. Foley makes no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, as to the operation or content of the site. Foley expressly disclaims all other guarantees, warranties, conditions and representations of any kind, either express or implied, whether arising under any statute, law, commercial use or otherwise, including implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Foley or any of its partners, officers, employees, agents or affiliates be liable, directly or indirectly, under any theory of law (contract, tort, negligence or otherwise), to you or anyone else, for any claims, losses or damages, direct, indirect special, incidental, punitive or consequential, resulting from or occasioned by the creation, use of or reliance on this site (including information and other content) or any third party websites or the information, resources or material accessed through any such websites. In some jurisdictions, the contents of this blog may be considered Attorney Advertising. If applicable, please note that prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Photographs are for dramatization purposes only and may include models. Likenesses do not necessarily imply current client, partnership or employee status.