Someone hacked the Associated Press Twitter account on April 23, sending out a 12:07 p.m. tweet proclaiming another act of terror. It quickly went viral on the site, prompting more than 4,500 retweets, 333 favorites and mass confusion.
Breaking: Two Explosions in the White House and Barack Obama is injured— The Associated Press (@AP) April 23, 2013
Three minutes after the AP tweet went out, hacktivist group Anonymous presented its own version of the breaking news alert.
Breaking: Two Explosions in the White House and Barack Obama is injured via @ap— Anonymous (@YourAnonNews) April 23, 2013
By 12:15 p.m., the AP Twitter account was suspended. The Associated Press' Google+ page reported the incident, saying "The Associated Press Twitter account (@AP) has been hacked. Please do not respond to news posted there in the last 20 minutes."
Wall Street Journal reporter Charles Forelle documented the hack's effect on the Dow Jones, which thankfully recovered after the AP discredited the tweet.
Market reacts to errant tweet. twitter.com/charlesforelle…— Charles Forelle (@charlesforelle) April 23, 2013
Anonymous, a loosely organized but extremely effective hacktivist group, has claimed responsibility for a number of high-level hacks in the past. North Korea, Israel and MIT have all fallen prey to the savvy Internet users. No official word yet on who is responsible for the Associated Press hack, though Anonymous is pointing the finger at Syria.
UPDATE: Associated Press twitter reportedly hacked by 'Syrian Electronic Army'— YourAnonLive (@YourAnonLive) April 23, 2013