Twitter apologises for mega crypto hack, says it is embarrassed and disappointed

Agencies
July 18, 2020

Days after Twitter accounts of several billionaires were hacked to engineer a crypto scam, Twitter on Saturday said it is embarrassed, disappointed and, more than anything, sorry for what happened with some of its high-profile users as attackers successfully manipulated its employees and used their credentials to access internal systems, including getting through the two-factor protections.

In the first detailed summary of the "social engineering attack" via a crypto scam that hit at least 130 users this week, Twitter said for 45 of those accounts, the attackers were able to initiate a password reset, login to the account and send Tweets.

"We are continuing our forensic review of all of the accounts to confirm all actions that may have been taken. In addition, we believe they may have attempted to sell some of the usernames," the micro-blogging platform said in a statement.

For up to eight of the Twitter accounts involved, the attackers took the additional step of downloading the account's information via "Your Twitter Data" tool.

This is a tool that is meant to provide an account owner with a summary of their Twitter account details and activity.

"We are reaching out directly to any account owner where we know this to be true. None of the eight were verified accounts," said Twitter.

The company said the attackers were not able to view previous account passwords, as those are not stored in plain text or available through the tools used in the attack.

"Attackers were able to view personal information including email addresses and phone numbers, which are displayed to some users of our internal support tools," informed Twitter.

In cases where an account was taken over by the attacker, they may have been able to view additional information, Twitter added, saying its forensic investigation of these activities was still ongoing.

"We are actively working on communicating directly with the account-holders that were impacted".

The company said it will soon restore access for all account owners who may still be locked out as a result of the remediation efforts.

The New York Times reported on Friday that the Twitter crypto scam can be traced back to a group of hackers who congregate online at OGusers.com, a username-swapping community where people buy and sell coveted online handles.

The report said that the Twitter hack is not from Russian, Chinese or North Korean hackers but was done by a group of young people, "one of whom says he lives at home with his mother".

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Agencies
January 14,2021

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London, Jan 14: The UK government on Wednesday reiterated its unchanged stance that the situation in Kashmir remains an issue for India and Pakistan to find a lasting political resolution to the issue.

Responding to a debate held in the House of Parliament complex on the Political situation in Kashmir , Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) minister Nigel Adams stressed that it is not for Britain to play any mediatory role in a bilateral matter, even as he accepted there were human rights concerns on both sides of the Line of Control (LoC).

The government's policy [on Kashmir] remains stable, it's unchanged. We continue to believe that this is for India and Pakistan to find a lasting political resolution to the situation that takes into account the wishes of the Kashmiri people as laid out in the Simla Agreement, said Adams, in his capacity as Minister for Asia.

It's not appropriate for the UK government to prescribe a solution or act as a mediator, he said.

At the end of the debate held at Westminster Hall in the House of Commons, the minister made reference to the District Development Council (DDC) democratic elections held in the region in December last year, which Labour Party MP Barry Gardiner pointed out attracted the free and fair participation of over 50 per cent of the local electorate.

And, responding to issues raised by cross-party MPs around the revocation of Article 370, which led to the creation of Jammu and Kashmir as Union Territories in August 2019, the minister welcomed the release of politicians held in protective custody and reports of broadband restrictions being lifted in the region.

We understand some of these restrictions may have been relaxed, with broadband/internet partially restored along with some access to social media. This is welcome news, but more should be done , he said.

The debate, organised by backbench members of Parliament led by Labour's Sarah Owen, included the participation of cross-party British MPs, many of whom have a large Kashmiri diaspora constituency base.

The people of Kashmir deserve the opportunity to thrive and succeed, so more broadly we welcome the commitment that the Indian government has made to the economic and social development" of Kashmir, said Adams.

Indian has categorically told the international community that the scrapping of Article 370 was its internal matter. It also advised Pakistan to accept the reality and stop all anti-India propaganda.

The Indian High Commission in London sought to highlight that since last year, a smart wi-fi project has enabled high-speed internet access in the region and that despite threats of terror attacks, challenging weather conditions and the Covid-19 pandemic, landmark DDC elections were concluded in December 2020.

J&K has not only normalised since August 2019 but is actually progressing on a positive trajectory of optimism and development in all sectors, a High Commission fact-sheet notes.

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Agencies
January 9,2021

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Washington, Jan 9: Sidney Powell, the lawyer who spearheaded outgoing US President Donald Trump's failed attempt to overturn the 2020 presidential election result, has been sued for $1.3 billion by the American corporation that makes voting machines.

In the defamation suit filed on Friday, the Denver-based Dominion Voting Systems chronicled some 40 of Powell's public statements that spread "wild" and "demonstrably false" allegations, reports Xinhua news agency.

The "viral disinformation campaign" that Powell mounted "to financially enrich herself, raise her public profile, and ingratiate herself to Donald Trump", deeply damaged the reputation and resale value of Dominion, the suit said.

There are "mountains of direct evidence" disproving Powell's election fraud claims about the company's machines, that have resulted in "Dominion's founder, Dominion's employees, Georgia's governor, and Georgia's secretary of state" being harassed and receiving death threats," the 124-page lawsuit further said.

Dominion CEO John Poulos also said in a statement that the lawsuit aimed to clear his company's name through a full airing of the facts about the 2020 election.

Powell is best known for her defence of Enron Corp. executives Ken Lay and Tom Skilling, who bilked thousands of investors and employees out of around $60 billion in 2001, the New York Times reported in 2005.

Lay left behind "a legacy of shame" characterized by "mismanagement and dishonesty", Bloomberg news said in a repor, and in 2009, Portfolio.com ranked Lay as the third-worst American CEO of all time.

Powell, 65, now will be forced to defend her central role in the fantasy story that the 2020 election was stolen from Trump.

Ironically, Dominion systems were also used in many counties that voted for Trump, and all of Powell's lawsuits involving the fraud claims have failed in court due to lack of evidence.

For weeks, Powell claimed that Dominion was established with communist money in Venezuela to enable ballot-stuffing and other vote manipulation, and that those abilities were harnessed to rig the election for Joe Biden.

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News Network
January 23,2021

New Delhi, Jan 23: Petrol and diesel prices in the country on Saturday touched new all-time highs after rates were increased for the fourth time this week.

Petrol and diesel prices were hiked by 25 paise per litre each, according to a price notification from oil marketing companies.

This took the petrol price in Delhi to Rs 85.70 per litre and in Mumbai to Rs 92.28.

Diesel rate climbed to Rs 75.88 a litre in the national capital and to Rs 82.66 per litre in Mumbai, the price data showed.

This is the second consecutive day of rate increase and the fourth this week. In all prices have gone up by Re 1 per litre this week.

Fuel prices, which vary from state to state depending on local sales tax or VAT, are now at record highs in the country, prompting cries for a cut in excise duty to ease the burden on consumers.

Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan earlier this week blamed Saudi oil output cut for the surge in oil prices but remained non-committal on tax cuts.

Top oil explorer Saudi Arabia has pledged additional voluntary output cuts of 1 million barrels per day in February and March, which has led to price climbing to most since the pandemic broke out.

State-owned fuel retailers -- Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOC), Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL) and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) -- had on January 6 resumed daily price revision after nearly a month-long hiatus.

Since then, rates have gone up by Rs 1.99 a litre on petrol and Rs 2.01 in case of diesel.

This comes after international oil prices firmed up on hopes of demand returning from the rollout of coronavirus vaccines in different countries, including India.

Prior to the current highs triggered by the price hikes this month, fuel prices had last touched record high on October 4, 2018.

At that time the government had cut excise duty on petrol and diesel by Rs 1.50 per litre in a bid to ease inflationary pressure and boost consumer confidence.

Alongside, state-owned fuel retailers cut prices by another Re 1 a litre, which they recouped later.

This time, there are no indications of a duty cut so far.

Petrol and diesel prices are revised on a daily basis in line with benchmark international price and foreign exchange rates.

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