Florida teenager charged with hacking Twitter accounts of Obama, Musk among others

Twitter has released new details about its massive hack

The phony tweets solicited bitcoin transfers, and authorities believe conspirators netted more than $100,000 in the cryptocurrency while operational for two hours.

A stunning attack on the accounts of some of Twitter's most prominent users, including Barack Obama, Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk, was orchestrated by a 17-year-old in Florida who recently graduated from high school, according to a local state attorney.

United States officials said 19-year-old Mason "Chaewon" Sheppard of Britain along with Nima Fazeli, 22, of Florida face criminal charges in the case.

Prosecutors in Florida said they filed 30 felony counts against 17-year-old resident of the state identified as the "mastermind" of the cyberattack. He will be charged as an adult. In total, the hackers targeted 130 Twitter accounts on July 15, but hijacked only 45 of them. Apple's Twitter account was included in the attack.

A British man, a Florida man and a Florida teen hacked theTwitter accounts of prominent politicians, celebrities and technology moguls to scam people around globe out of more than $100,000 in Bitcoin, authorities said Friday.

A 17-year-old Tampa man was arrested Friday morning after the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Department of Justice discovered he was behind an extensive Twitter hack, which temporarily gave him access to the accounts of Bill Gates, Barack Obama and many others.

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Warren declined to comment on whether others had participated in the attack.

"These crimes were perpetrated using the names of famous people and celebrities, but they're not the primary victims here", Warren said. "This "Bit-Con" was created to steal money from regular Americans from all over the country, including here in Florida", read the press release. "Today's charging announcement demonstrates that the elation of nefarious hacking into a secure environment for fun or profit will be short-lived".

They said that they have made the move to significantly limit access to their internal tools and systems while they continue to investigate the breach, and that the "Your Twitter Data download feature" has been impacted and their response time to queries and support needs will be slower.

The hackers used credentials from Twitter employees to access Twitter's internal systems and gain an insight into how the site operates, which then allowed them to target employees who had access to account support tools.

According to a Reuters report, over 1,000 Twitter contractors and employees had access to the company's internal tools before the attack. "In particular, I want to say to would-be offenders, break the law, and we will find you".

The company is also improving the tools used to detect and prevent unauthorized access to Twitter's internal systems and is also running company-wide phishing exercises to block similar future hack attempts.

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