Most of my Twitter followers have noticed (as well as contacted me) that my account was compromised over the weekend. First of all, my apologies to those who went through the same thing I did, and kudos to those who quickly identified the fraudulent activity.
I received a direct tweet with the text: “Hey. some person is posting bad stuff about you here http://xxxx” from somebody I would not have suspected to have been caught up in this too.
First of all I was duped – throughout my experience with phishing and scams I am both angry at myself and embarrassed at the same time. But I must admit that this phishing scheme caught me just at the right time. I had just posted a number of videos to the VMware YouTube channel on the day before, which typically gets a decent amount of traffic, so I only believed that somebody – perhaps even a competitor, was slinging mud! With that thought in my mind I quickly accessed the link from the fraudulent tweet on my iPhone, not even looking at, or verifying the actual URL. When prompted to enter my username and password, I was not even phased because many times to access Twitter information outside of the twitter iPhone client you are redirected to a browser requiring you to log into your account. BUT, I immediately knew I was in trouble when I was led to a cryptic landing page – then the mayhem ensued! My account sent direct tweets to a large number of my 400+ followers with the same “Hey. some person is posting bad stuff about you here :/” message and causing a slew of direct tweet responses, emails and phone calls.
This resulted, luckily, in my direct tweet capability (from my account) being revoked – I am not sure if it is even restored, and I also found that the fraudulent url link was taken down. I am happy that Twitter tracked and dealt with this swiftly, but I am still angry at the time wasted in cleaning up this mess – also considering the potential long-term fallout and trust from my followers.
For those who were affected in any way from this incident, again – my apologies. Now it’s time to move forward again!