Turkish Hackers Hijack High-Profile Twitter Accounts

Turkish hackers hijacked several high-profile Twitter accounts following a dispute between Turkey and the Netherlands that saw the latter prevent a domestic rally of Turkish immigrants in the run-up to a constitutional referendum in Turkey that's scheduled for next month. Twitter confirmed that the attackers managed to gain control of official accounts of BBC North America, the French economy ministry, and a German soccer club Borussia Dortmund. Following the attack, the compromised accounts were defaced with messages referring to "Nazi Holland" and "Nazi Germany." Some of the messages also included swastikas and videos of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan heavily criticizing Holland and the rest of Europe from trying to prevent Turkish immigrants and descendants from rallying in support of the upcoming referendum in which eligible Turks will vote on whether to grant Erdogan more political power in the transcontinental country.

A Twitter spokesperson said that the San Francisco-based social media company is aware of the issue and revealed that the attack was conducted using a third-party app whose permissions were revoked in the meantime. Soon after, Twitter Counter confirmed that hackers compromised its service that provides comprehensive Twitter analytics and used it to access the aforementioned accounts. Twitter Counter's Chief Executive Officer Omer Ginor said that the company is currently investigating the incident but provided no further details on the matter. Twitter accounts of Amnesty International and former best tennis player in the world Boris Becker were also targeted during the attack.

Turkey recently severed highest diplomatic relations with Holland over the dispute outlined above. The controversial referendum that started the entire ordeal is scheduled to take place on April 16. In addition to accusing them of "Nazi" practices, President Erdogan recently called Holland and Germany "bandit countries." Recent polls suggest that results of the upcoming constitutional referendum remain uncertain, which is why the current Turkish administration decided to hold rallies across Europe where many Turkish immigrants and descendants are eligible to vote as diaspora voters. Apart from Holland, the rallies were also blocked in some parts of Germany, which is why the Central European country is now also criticized by Turkey's administration.

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Dominik Bosnjak

Senior Writer
Dominik started at AndroidHeadlines in 2016. He’s approaching his first full decade in the media industry, with his background being primarily in technology, gaming, and entertainment. These days, his focus is more on the political side of the tech game, as well as data privacy issues, with him looking at both of those through the prism of Android. Contact him at [email protected]