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Twitter urges Android users to update app to avoid attacks

Twitter is urging Android users to update the app to stop hackers accessing their private messages.

The micro-blogging site has said they fixed the "vulnerability" but for the 4 per cent that could have their data and Direct Messages accessed, they have asked that all users carry out the update to be safe.

In a blog post, they explained: "We recently discovered and fixed a vulnerability in Twitter for Android related to an underlying Android OS security issue affecting OS versions 8 and 9. Our understanding is 96% of people using Twitter for Android already have an Android security patch installed that protects them from this vulnerability. For the other 4%, this vulnerability could allow an attacker, through a malicious app installed on your device, to access private Twitter data on your device (like Direct Messages) by working around Android system permissions that protect against this."

They added: "To keep your Twitter data safe, please update to the latest version of Twitter for Android on all Android devices that you use to access Twitter. This issue did not impact Twitter for iOS or Twitter.com."

It comes just days after hackers viewed the private messages of 36 accounts.

A number of high-profile US figures - including the likes of Bill Gates, Joe Biden and Elon Musk - were hit in an apparent Bitcoin scam and Twitter revealed that a number of DMs (Direct Messages) were also accessed.

The company did not reveal whose private messages were compromised but it did admit that one was owned by an elected official in the Netherlands.

Dutch far-right politician Geert Wilders told the BBC that this was a reference to his Twitter account but the company has not confirmed this.

He said: "I was informed by Twitter last night... that my Twitter account was not only hacked for some days and the hacker also posted tweets on my account and sent DMs in my name, but indeed also got full access to my DMs, which of course is totally unacceptable in many ways.

"People critical of Islam or regimes in the Middle East [including those] from within countries like Iran, Saudi Arabia and Syria [have sent me DMs over 10 years] and I do hope they will not be in danger if their identity would be exposed because of this hack.

"I had deleted most of them but maybe some were left there for the hacker to see and copy."

In a statement, the FBI said "the accounts appear to have been compromised" with the goal of cryptocurrency fraud, as they urged the public to remain vigilant.

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