Twitter Trouble

While playing with my new ipad, I can across an interesting article on The Last Watchdog about the US Federal Trade Commission's complaint against Twitter.

I'd read about twitter's security breach in April last year where an employee's personal email account was hacked and provided admin passwords to the social networking site, but had somehow missed the earlier breach where apparently nothng more complicated than a brute force attack revealed the site's weak, lower case, common dictionary word administrative password!

From the article some of the major points from the FTC's complaint are Twtter's failure to:

  • Requiring employees to use hard-to-guess administrative passwords that are not used for other programs, websites, or networks
  • Prohibiting employees from storing administrative passwords in plain text within their personal e-mail accounts
  • Suspending or disabling administrative passwords after a reasonable number of unsuccessful login attempts
  • Providing an administrative login webpage that is made known only to authorized persons and is separate from the login page for users
  • Enforcing periodic changes of administrative passwords by, for example, setting them to expire every 90 days
  • Restricting access to administrative controls to employees whose jobs required it
  • Imposing other reasonable restrictions on administrative access, such as by restricting access to specified IP addresses
Additonally Twitter are "barred for 20 years from misleading consumers about the extent to which it protects the security, privacy, and confidentiality of nonpublic consumer information, including the measures it takes to prevent unauthorized access to nonpublic information and honor the privacy choices made by consumers. The company also must establish and maintain a comprehensive information security program, which will be assessed by an independent auditor every other year for 10 years".

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