UK Cabinet Minister Ed Miliband hacked on Twitter

Filed Under: Phishing, Social networks, Spam, Twitter

Ed Miliband MP, the high profile British Secretary for Energy and Climate Change, has fallen victim to the current swathe of phishing attacks sweeping the Twitter system.

Mr Miliband, who is a member of Gordon Brown's cabinet, appears to have been careless with his computer security and handed his Twitter username and password over to hackers, possibly as a result of the "This You????" or "LOL this is funny" attacks we saw earlier this week.

As a consequence, earlier today his account posted spam messages promoting potions to improve sexual performance:

Ed Miliband's Twitter account sent out a spam message

A typical spam message reads:

hhey, i've been having better sex and longer with this here <link removed>

Watch this YouTube video to learn how your Twitter account can be hacked through a phishing attack:

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Miliband subsequently posted an explanation to his account, but not before many others on Twitter had retweeted his messages.

Ed Miliband posted an apology to his Twitter account

Miliband needs to do more than just tweet an explanation for his bizarre tweets, however. He also needs to change his password, and think long and hard about whether he is using that same password on any other websites.

You see, 33% of people to admit to playing Russian Roulette with their identity by using the same password on every website they access. If Miliband makes that kind of mistake, then he has potentially opened up his email account, his eBay account, his PayPal and Amazon account... basically, his entire online life could be handed over to hackers.

So, learn the lesson for yourself: choose a strong and different password for every website.

Miliband should also check the Settings/Connections screen on his Twitter account. If there are any third party applications he doesn't recognise listed there, he should revoke their permission to access his account as soon as possible.

Of course, it's not the case that Ed Miliband was specifically targeted by the hackers. He's just one of tens of thousands of Twitter users who have been hit in the last few days.

There's one piece of good news - hardly anyone is likely to believe that Ed Miliband is 24/female/horny, the message sent in the latest Twitter attack.

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About the author

Graham Cluley runs his own award-winning computer security blog, and is a veteran of the anti-virus industry having worked for a number of security companies since the early 1990s. Now an independent security analyst, he regularly makes media appearances and gives computer security presentations. Send Graham an email, subscribe to his updates on Facebook, follow him on Twitter and App.net, and circle him on Google Plus for regular updates.