Twitter has reported an unfortunate error in its security systems that occurred back in January of 2022, as a result of which, an important piece of users’ private information had leaked and was sold online by hackers. This information was about whether a phone number or email address was connected to an existing Twitter account.
Twitter explained, “As a result of the vulnerability, if someone submitted an email address or phone number to Twitter’s systems, Twitter’s systems would tell the person what Twitter account the submitted email addresses or phone number was associated with, if any.” The company further assured users that it had looked into and fixed the issue right after learning about it.
Reportedly, a database of 5.4 million Twitter account profiles had been compiled by hackers and sold for an amount of almost $30k, and had even been purchased by a number of buyers.
While the problem itself is not as massive, considering that it involved breaching of publicly available information mostly, its consequences are nevertheless concerning for people who had wished to keep their Twitter profile separate from their IRL identity. It also gave hackers a chance to harass users by contacting them on their contact information by tracking it on the internet.