Microblogging platform Twitter asked its users on 3rd May 2018 to change their passwords. This notice was due to a Twitter leak caused by a software bug. According to the company, they had “unmasked” passwords by mistake through a software bug. The company mentioned that the data hasn’t been exposed to any hackers. But Twitter urged its users to change their passwords for safety.
Twitter Leak: What Actually Happened?
The Jack Dorsey-led company stores passwords in its encrypted version, so that even the company people can’t know them. It was explained by Twitter chief technology officer Parag Agarwal in an official blog post.
He stated, “Due to a bug, passwords were written to an internal log before completing the hashing process.” He further noted, “We found this error ourselves, removed the passwords, and are implementing plans to prevent this bug from happening again.”
The social networking company hasn’t revealed how many passwords were unveiled. Twitter hasn’t even revealed for how long was the bug there. “Out of an abundance of caution, we ask that you consider changing your password on all services where you’ve used this password,” the chief technology officer also mentioned in his post.
The Twitter leak incident is not something new regarding data leak among social networks. The social networking sector is already having a lot of eyes on it due to the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica scandal. The scandal led to data leak of a lot of Facebook users, and it was misused.
Post- Cambridge Analytica
The stumble comes as the sector faces intense scrutiny over the protection of personal data online, in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal which saw information from tens of millions of Facebook users hijacked and misused. After Twitter leak news got out, the company’s shares went a percent down to $30.36 in after-market trades.
Twitter’s move to go public with the Twitter leak incident is a good change rather than not going public with it before the media. It doesn’t seem that users will delete their Twitter accounts for just being asked to change passwords.
Last week, the company reported its second consecutive quarterly profit. Twitter earned $61 million from January to March 2018. This happened due to its growing advertising revenue and increasing users.
Twitter CEO Dorsey also tweeted, “We recently discovered a bug where account passwords were being written to an internal log before completing a masking/hashing process. We’ve fixed, see no indication of breach or misuse, and believe it’s important for us to be open about this internal defect.” More details on the official blog here.