Twitter Under Massive Attack, Russian Hacker Hampered The Social Network With Hash Tags

Very popular and one of the largest social networking site Twitter is under cyber attack. Russian hackers have taken aim at Twitter in recent days to hamper communication between opposition activists as outrage against the conduct of last week's general elections grows
Several Internet "bots" have recently been created, which when triggered by a keyword or "hashtag" see fake Twitter accounts send out huge numbers of messages to block the flow of communication between protest organizers, said Maxim Goncharov, a researcher at the Trend Micro computer security company.
The hashtags include Triumfalnaya, the name of a Moscow square where more than 500 people were arrested at an opposition rally Tuesday against the election results, and the Russian word for revolution, Revolyutsiya.
"On Tuesday, there were up to 10 messages per second with the hashtag Triumfalnaya," Goncharov said, with the peak of activity between 6 and 7 p.m. Moscow time just hours before the protest was due to start. 
This meant that people who used Twitter to search for information on the protest instead found insults about opposition activists or garbled nonsense, explained the Munich-based expert. He said a pro-Kremlin youth group was most likely behind the campaign, their hacking skills having been used for similar purposes in the past.

"There are different activists around [Prime Minister Vladimir] Putin and [President Dmitry] Medvedev, like Nashi," he said, referring to Russia's largest pro-Kremlin youth group.
Another security expert said that most of the fake accounts used in the attacks had not been used to post messages "other than those meant to counter the protesters, or to simply fill the hashtag feeds with meaningless garbage."
He has figured out many of these Twitter accounts back to a single user. But that particular attacker remain untraceable.


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