Hackers seize AP Twitter feed, send bogus message about White House attack

The Associated Press's Twitter account was hacked Tuesday. PHOTO CREDIT: TWITTER
The Associated Press’s Twitter account was hacked Tuesday. PHOTO CREDIT: TWITTER

A phony news report sent shock waves throughout social media, and eventually the stock market Tuesday when a hacker got a hold of the Associated Press’s Twitter account.

A little after 1 p.m., a false tweet sent out by the Associated Press’s twitter handle, “@AP,” reported there were two explosions in the White House, and that President Barack Obama was injured.

The Associated Press’s account was quickly suspended, and a spokesman called the tweet “bogus.” The AP has nearly 2 million Twitter followers.

White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters that the president was fine.

According to Reuters, a group calling itself the Syrian Electronic Army, which is supportive of that country’s leader, Bashar Al-Assad, on Tuesday claimed responsibility on its own Twitter feed for the AP hack.

The group has also claimed it was behind past hacks of Twitter accounts for National Public Radio, BBC and CBS’s “60 Minutes” program, among others.

The fraudulent tweet sent the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average plunging sharply before they recovered. Stock and bond futures also were affected, according to Reuters.

The AP said the tweet came after hackers made repeated attempts to steal the passwords of AP journalists.

A glimpse at the momentary financial frenzy:

In what one trader described as “pure chaos,” the three-minute plunge triggered by the tweet briefly wiped out $136.5 billion of the S&P 500 index’s value, according to Reuters data.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average temporarily dropped 143.5 points, or 0.98 percent.

Follow Morgan Rousseau on Twitter: @MetroMorgan
Follow Metro Boston on Twitter: @MetroBOS



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
International

Class action against Facebook attracts 60,000 users

A law student said his class action suit against Facebook for alleged privacy violations has the support of 60,000 users and passed its first legal review.

National

Weather system east of Caribbean could turn into…

An area of low pressure located east of the Caribbean Sea has a 50 percent chance of becoming a tropical depression or storm in the next 48 hours, U.S. forecasters…

National

U.S. hospital to discharge doctor treated with experimental…

An American doctor who contracted Ebola treating victims of the deadly virus in Liberia has recovered and will be discharged on Thursday by the Atlanta hospital that treated him with…

Local

Mugger uses chokeholds in Central Park attacks: NYPD

Cops are searching for a Manhattan mugging suspect tied to at least two attacks near Central Park this week.

Movies

Girlfriend in a coma: Chloe Grace Moretz

Chloe Grace Moretz is the best cheerleader "If I Stay" could ask for. As the star of the film adaptation of the successful YA novel…

The Word

The Word: Summer lovin' for Zac Efron and…

Ah, the summer romance. So intense, so fleeting. With Labor Day fast approaching, it should come as little surprise that the incredibly surprising romance between…

The Word

The Word: The Zac Efron-Michelle Rodriguez summer fling…

  Ah, the summer romance. So intense, so fleeting. With Labor Day fast approaching, it should come as little surprise that the incredibly surprising romance…

Television

TV watch list, Thursday, Aug. 21: 'Simpsons,' 'Simpsons'…

It's time to change the channel to FXX, and then never change it again, as you watch all the "Simpsons" episodes you can handle.

NFL

Fantasy football draft guide: How to draft your…

Many are wondering if we’re entering a new age in fantasy football drafting — one where running backs take a backseat.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Giants storylines to watch

The Giants have plenty to work on as they reach the dress rehearsal preseason game Friday night against the rival Jets.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Jets storylines to watch

Metro looks at three Jets storylines to watch as they play the Giants Friday.

NFL

Giants expected to work Corey Washington into first-team…

The day of reckoning for the Giants' fringe players will fall upon them Friday night against the Jets.

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…

Wellbeing

Metabolic syndrome could have a sugar link

Scientists in St. Louis may have found another culprit in metabolic syndrome, which can lead to heart disease and type 2 diabetes.  Uric acid is…

Wellbeing

Another way stress hurts your unborn baby

Mothers know to try staying calm during pregnancy, as stress has been linked to behavioral and developmental problems for their babies. But now, a new…