35,000 Character Tweet Reveals URL Exploit, Causes Crashes


Two Twitter users, using the site under the handles Timrasett and HackneyYT, recently discovered a way to bypass the social media platform's character limit in order to post a tweet that was 35,000 characters long. The pair apparently found a loophole in the site's code, which allowed for much longer messages, through the use of embedded URL codifiers. That's according to yet another tweet from a separate Twitter user, under the handle "hexwaxwing," who later took to the social network to show exactly how the exploit was used, which can be seen in the included image or through the source link below.

Unfortunately, when Timrasett and Hackney attempted to highlight the find for Twitter by tweeting their message, using the exploit is said to have caused crashes for the site itself. That ultimately earned them a temporary ban from using the site by Twitter, while the company reworked its code to prevent the exploit from being used again. The post itself doesn't appear to have been malicious in nature, consisting of a random string of characters aside from the above-mentioned codifiers – and Twitter has since reinstated both Hackney and Timrasett's accounts. Once that ban was lifted, however, Hackney, immediately and explicitly tweeted that neither user intends to stop with the discovery of the character limit exploit. Specifically, the user stated that exploit was "just the beginning" and that the pair is still looking for new bugs on Twitter. On the other hand, Timrasett simply pinned a new tweet to their own profile apologizing for any crashes caused and explaining that the duo was only trying to show how easy Twitter is to crack.

Twitter, meanwhile, has not directly addressed the exploit or any implications that it may have represented prior to it being fixed. Several users have tried to implement the exploit and it no longer works but that means there hasn't been a lot of discussions, if any, about what other problems such an exploit could have caused in the long run. The company's app and service are hugely popular, so the resulting impact could have ranged from being a complete non-issue to a serious threat. Bearing that in mind, the company is finally beginning to approach profitability, so it may not be able to afford for any substantial bugs marring public perception.



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Junior Editor

Daniel has been writing for AndroidHeadlines since 2016. As a Senior Staff Writer for the site, Daniel specializes in reviewing a diverse range of technology products and covering topics related to Chrome OS and Chromebooks. Daniel holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Software Engineering and has a background in Writing and Graphics Design that drives his passion for Android, Google products, the science behind the technology, and the direction it's heading. Contact him at [email protected]

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