Friday March 22, 2019
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Twitter Asked 336 Million Users to Change Password as it Has Detected a Bug

Twitter masks passwords through a process called hashing using a function known as bcrypt, which replaces the actual password with a random set of numbers and letters that are stored in Twitter's system.

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Twitter in recent months has purged suspicious user accounts in a bid to prevent the dissemination of fake news
Twitter in recent months has purged suspicious user accounts in a bid to prevent the dissemination of fake news. Pixabay

It is time to change your Twitter password now as the micro-blogging platform has asked its 336 million users to do so across its services after it discovered a bug that stored passwords in plain text in an internal system.

In a blog post on Thursday, Twitter said it recently identified a bug that stored passwords unmasked in an internal log.

“We have fixed the bug, and our investigation shows no indication of breach or misuse by anyone.

“Out of an abundance of caution, we ask that you consider changing your password on all services where you’ve used this password,” said Parag Agrawal, Chief Technology Officer at Twitter, adding that Twitter is sorry that this has happened.

“We recognise and appreciate the trust you place in us, and are committed to earning that trust every day,” he wrote.

Twitter masks passwords through a process called hashing using a function known as bcrypt, which replaces the actual password with a random set of numbers and letters that are stored in Twitter’s system.

"We found this error ourselves, removed the passwords, and are implementing plans to prevent this bug from happening again," Twitter said.
Representational Image, Pexels

“This allows our systems to validate your account credentials without revealing your password. This is an industry standard,” Agrawal noted.

Due to a bug, passwords were written to an internal log before completing the hashing process.

“We found this error ourselves, removed the passwords, and are implementing plans to prevent this bug from happening again,” Twitter said.

Agrawal advised people to change their passwords, enable two-factor authentication on their Twitter account and use a password manager to create strong, unique passwords on every service they use.

After the massive Facebook data scandal, a report in The Sunday Telegraph recently claimed that Twitter had also sold users’ data to a Cambridge Analytica (CA) researcher who collected the data of 87 million Facebook users without their knowledge — a charge that Twitter has denied.

Also Read: Google Assistant Can Now Connect to Over 5,000 Devices

According to the report, Twitter sold public data access “for one day” in 2015 to Aleksandr Kogan, then a psychology researcher with University of Cambridge, and his company Global Science Research (GSR).

In a statement given to IANS, Twitter said that based on the recent reports, they conducted their own internal review and did not find any access to private data about people who use Twitter.

Twitter reported a revenue of $665 million — an increase of 21 per cent year-over-year (yoy) — in the first quarter of 2018. (IANS)

Next Story

Micro-blogging Site Twitter to Audit Developers Using Data From App

Twitter says it suspended 1,62,000 apps in the second half of 2018, showing it is willing to play hardball with developers that endanger its ecosystem

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Twitter, India, Smartphone
Twitter on a smartphone device. Pixabay

Micro-blogging site Twitter has decided to audit app developers who use data from its platform, as business and research boosting tools to make sure it gets paid for the information delivered.

Starting June 19, developers that use recent tweets from or mention a user more than 100,000 times per day, will have to submit their apps to Twitter for review.

“The goal is ensuring that our platform is safe and promoting the privacy and safety of our users, and providing a level playing field commercially,” TechCrunch quoted Yoel Roth, Head of site integrity, Twitter as saying on Tuesday.

Developers found to be violating Twitter’s policies would be booted from the platform, while those who fail to file for review will be capped at 100,000 requests per day for the user timeline and mentions application programming interfaces (APIs) of Twitter.

“We’re fundamentally different than other platforms that have APIs since almost everything that happens on our service is public,” Roth explained.

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FILE – A man reads tweets on his phone in front of a displayed Twitter logo. VOA

Developers who use Twitter data as business tools for customer services or social media monitoring, will have to pay and enter a commercial licencing agreement with the platform with an undisclosed custom price-range based on usage.

“Twitter refused to even specify the range those prices fall into, which won’t win it any extra trust,” the report said.

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If a developer in question presents legitimate consumer-use cases, like running a third-party Twitter client or doing research, it will be granted free access to the API at the same rate they have today.

Twitter says it suspended 1,62,000 apps in the second half of 2018, showing it is willing to play hardball with developers that endanger its ecosystem, the report added. (IANS)