Digital Gangster Take Credit for Twitter Hacks

ByIan Paul, PC World
January 6, 2009, 2:08 PM

— -- Members of the online forum Digital Gangster may have been behind yesterday's Twitter hack. On Monday, hacker's gained access to, and posted messages from, 33 Twitter accounts including those of Bill O'Reilly, Britney Spear and CNN's Rick Sanchez.

According to this thread, a hacker named GMZ gained access to Twitter login information and then posted a different thread-that has since been removed-calling on other DG members to email him for credentials to individual accounts. At least another four members then claim to have been part of yesterday's Twitter hack.

The hack included several prank posts from Twitter users such as Fox News, Facebook and president-elect Barack Obama. The strange thing about some of these messages is that they included affiliate links-a common marketing program that pays the creator of the link for driving traffic to another website such as Amazon-according to reports. That may make finding the culprits easier as the affiliate programs in question should have a virtual paper trail leading back to the payee.

While DG members are taking credit for this exploit it's important to remember that it may be all talk. Hacker forums often contain inane threads where members make things up or simply "trash talk" with their online buddies. For example, a user named Craig claims to have had access to Barack Obama's Twitter account. It seems unlikely that a hacker would admit this online knowing that federal investigators would have to get involved with anything involving the president-elect.

That being said, the DG forum members seem to be the most likely culprits at the moment. Considering how quickly authorities were able to track down the Palin e-mail hacker, we should have more to report on the Twitter pranksters soon.

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