What we know about how Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey's account was hacked, and the group called 'Chuckling Squad' who is claiming responsibility

Jack Dorsey

  • Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s account (@jack) was hacked on Friday afternoon, Twitter’s official communications account confirmed at 4:05 PM EST.
  • A group that identified itself as the “Chuckling Squad,” the same hackers that have targeted famous YouTubers, including James Charles and Shane Dawson, says it acquired access to Dorsey’s account.
  • The hackers tweeted out racial and anti-Semitic slurs and more than a dozen tweets and retweets over a 20-minute period before Twitter responded.
  • At 5:22 PM EST, Twitter’s communications team said that Dorsey’s account had been “secured,” and that “there is no indication that Twitter’s systems have been compromised.”
  • Here’s what we know about the hack so far.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories. 

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The hack of @jack lasted for under 30 minutes on Friday afternoon.

Starting at 3:44 PM EST, Twitter founder and CEO Jack Dorsey’s official account, @jack, began tweeting out offensive messages and retweeting tweets associated with the “Chuckling Squad,” a group of hackers that targeted YouTubers over the past two weeks. 

In just 20 minutes, before Twitter’s official communications account confirmed the hack, Dorsey’s account tweeted racial slurs, anti-Semitic tweets, and more offensive content before all the tweets and retweets were eventually removed. 

The group also shared a link to a Discord server it has commandeered since the last high-profile account hack it claimed to be behind, but Discord deleted the associated server quickly after Dorsey’s account tweeted about it. 

Read more: Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s Twitter account was hacked to send out racist tweets with the n-word and phrases like ‘Hitler is innocent’

The hacking group that identified itself as taking over Dorsey’s account has previously targeted YouTubers, including James Charles.

Before claiming ownership over Dorsey’s account hack, the “Chuckling Squad,” as it identifies itself, hacked famous YouTubers. James Charles, Shane Dawson, King Bach, Etika, and Amanda Cerny were all hacked in the past two weeks.

Charles, the most recent hack, alleged in a tweet threatening legal action that AT&T was to blame for the “Chuckling Squad” gaining access to his account. 

Twitter has yet to confirm who hacked Dorsey’s account or how, but while it was hacked, Dorsey’s account tweeted the link to the same Discord server whose admin posted screenshots from inside deceased YouTuber Etika’s Google Mail account.  

Read more: James Charles is the latest YouTuber to get hacked on Twitter by the same group or person that goes by ‘chuckling’

Tweets sent while Dorsey’s account was hacked seemingly used the service “Cloudhopper,” a third-party service.

Dorsey has sent tweets before using Cloudhopper, an app Twitter acquired in 2010 that uses SMS, the most widely used type of text messaging. Cloudhopper is no longer available to the public for use, though Dorsey tweeted from Cloudhopper before his interview with Joe Rogan in February.

When the “Chuckling Squad” targeted YouTubers, it was rumored that the hackers were calling AT&T, pretending to be their targets, and requesting a SIM card swap, which would give them access to their target’s text messaging. 

 

Some were quick to joke and speculate that Dorsey and members of his team may be at the Burning Man music festival.

To be clear, there is zero evidence Jack Dorsey has ever attended Burning Man or is currently at the desert-based gathering. But in the wake of his account’s hacking, people were quick to joke and speculate that Dorsey or members of his security team were at Burning Man, with the joke being that it would be the definition of an inopportune place to handle such a time-sensitive situation.

Tweet Embed:
//twitter.com/mims/statuses/1167527934577524736?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw
Just imagine the head of Twitter’s security team right now, on seven different kinds of mushrooms, nude, in a giant bamboo steampunk rocketship called the Love Temple, ignoring his push notifications

 

Previously, Dorsey has tweeted how much he enjoys San Francisco when Burning Man attendees are gone, leaving the city slightly less crowded. On August 31, 2010, he tweeted “Definitely one of my favorite weeks in SF. All the Burning Man folks are emptying out of the city, and it’s getting ever warmer.”

Twitter says Dorsey’s account is now secure.

At 5:22 PM ET on Friday, Twitter’s communications team tweeted out that Dorsey’s account was secure, and that Twitter’s investigation into the matter had not surfaced any evidence to suggest Twitter’s systems were compromised.

Tweet Embed:
//twitter.com/mims/statuses/1167548246618587137?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw
The account is now secure, and there is no indication that Twitter’s systems have been compromised.

BuzzFeed News senior tech reporter Ryan Mac also tweeted that he had spoken with a former Twitter employee since Dorsey’s hacking who said the incident should be embarassing for the CEO, who has been advised to use a more secure laptop to work in the past (as opposed to his iPhone), and who has refused. 

Tweet Embed:
//twitter.com/mims/statuses/1167550657710022656?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw
Spoke with a former Twitter employee who said Dorsey’s hack should be embarrassing for the CEO. That person says Dorsey, who is known to work only on his iPhone, was told to use a more secure laptop in the past but refused. Twitter declined to comment. https://t.co/z4X94rI9OK

 

Mac said Twitter declined to comment on the matter to him.