Five high-profile Twitter accounts which have been hacked

Chris Parsons
News Editor
Yahoo! News.


The hacking of the Associated Press Twitter account this week was the latest example of the power of social media - especially when it goes wrong.

Here are five more examples of high-profile celebrities and organizations whose social media presence was compromised by online hackers.



FIFA/Sepp Blatter.

Football's world governing body was left red-faced last week when hackers interfered with its World Cup Twitter feed, as well as that of president Sepp Blatter.

Spoof messages were posted claiming Blatter was involved in corruption, before the hacking was spotted and the rogue messages were quickly taken down.






The @FifaWorldCup account was also compromised, with messages being posted suggesting money had changed hands when Qatar was awarded the 2022 World Cup.

The Twitter handle suggested the FIFA president was to step down following corruption charges, before Blatter himself apparently 'responded' on @SeppBlatter with messages defending himself.

A group called the Syrian Electronic Army - the same group who apparently hacked AP - claimed responsibility for the stunt.

Britney Spears

The 'Hit Me Baby One More Time!' singer was the unfortunate victim of a Twitter hacking attack in November 2009 when she was made to appear as a Satan worshipper.

The pop megastar posted one message declaring: 'I give myself to Lucifer every day for it to arrive as quickly as possible. Glory to Satan!'


Another tweet shortly after read: 'i hope that the new world order will arrive as soon as possible! -Britney.'

On her blog soon after, Britney said: 'This morning, Britney’s Twitter was hacked. We apologize for any offense the message from the hacker caused and are working with Twitter on remedying the situation as quickly as possible.'

Lady Gaga

Thousands of Lady Gaga fans fell for a simple Twitter phishing scam in December 2011 when a message was posted on the star's Twitter advertising free iPads.

A tweet from the @ladygaga account read: 'Monster, I'm giving away FREE iPad2's to each one of you in the spirit of the holidays :)', followed by a link to a false site.


With the star boasting a Twitter following at the time of 17 million, a few thousands were always going to fall for the scam.

And despite the offending posts and phishing site being deleted, it is thought that 100,000 'Monsters' (the nickname used for Lady Gaga fans) fell for the hoax.


Fox News

The respected U.S. news outlet was hacked in 2011 when they Twitter feed falsely declared that President Barack Obama had passed away.

The @foxnewspolitics account posted a message saying: '@BarackObama has just passed. The President is dead. A sad 4th of July, indeed. President Barack Obama is dead.'


Later tweets said: @BarackObama has just passed. Nearly 45 minutes ago, he was shot twice in the lower pelvic area and in the neck; shooter unknown. Bled out", and then: "@BarackObama shot twice at a Ross' restaurant in Iowa while campaigning. RIP Obama, best regards to the Obama family.'

A group loosely connected to the hacker group Anonymous later claimed responsibility for the tweets.

Justin Bieber

The teen pop sensation - a prolific tweeter with over 38 million followers - is as vulnerable as anyone else to Twitter hacking, as he found out in March last year.

The Canadian star posted a somewhat out of character tweet to his followers which read: '19 million my a** biebermyb***s'.

The post was thought to be a reference to his Twitter following passing 19 million at around the same time.

Hackers also unfollowed many of Bieber's fans and blocked some other 'Beliebers' before the offending message was deleted.