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Twitter breach gives behind-the-scenes Obama peek

Wanted: Security engineer

Twitter still hasn't come clean, but it appears yet another administrative account on the micro-blogging site has been breached, giving world+dog an inside peek at the accounts of Barack Obama, Ashton Kutcher, and other celebrities.

Screenshots posted on French blog Korben show more than a dozen images purporting to be taken by a hacker who gained inside access to Twitter. They provide a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the account activities of some of the most exclusive Twitterati.

Actor Ashton Kutcher and pop star Lily Rose Allen, for instance, have both blocked celebrity gossip monger Perez Hilton from sending them messages. Barack Obama has blocked 96 Twitter users, including one named rachel_wanggg. Plenty of other administrator-only pages turned up as well, including blacklisted users and dashboards containing configuration settings.

Twitter representatives didn't respond to an email requesting comment. Twitter's blog, which in the past has been used to communicate security issues, was also silent on the matter.

If legit, it would be at least the second time a Twitter admin's account has been breached. In January, as Wired.com's Kim Zetter reported, the accounts of Britney Spears, Barack Obama, and others were tampered with after a hacker used off-the-shelf software to guess an admin's password was "happiness."

The screenshots attempt to shield most sensitive information, including IP and email addresses of those concerned. They also blurred the name of the Twitter admin whose account was supposedly breached, but a simple search suggests it belonged to Twitter employee Jason Goldman.

Twitter has also been on the receiving end of several powerful, self-replicating worm attacks that force users to post comments simply by clicking on a link while logged in to their accounts.

The site, by the way, recently posted online ads looking for software engineers who specialize in application and infrastructure security. We wish them well with that. ®

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