For a brief period on Wednesday NASA Kepler was more focused on the “moon” than the planets after the telescope’s Twitter account was compromised and an image of a woman’s scantily clad backside was tweeted out.
“Our account was temporarily compromised,” NASA tweeted. “We’re back in business, ready to tell you about new planet discoveries.”
Hackers, who changed the NASA Kepler profile picture to one of a young woman and the name to “r4die2oz,” also tweeted the message “waiting for ya: <3” and included a link to a porn site. The image appeared on the space agency’s home page. While the Twitter-verse reveled in the hack – tweeting about moons, butts and the seventh planet from the sun as well as opining that NASA was just trying to attract a wider audience – the hack was further evidence of the rise of porn bots. Security pros noted that even the most secure of organizations can fail on something as simple as a password.
“Passwords are not secure, no matter how complicated or clever we make them,” Gemalto’s CTO of Data Protection Jason Hart said in comments emailed to SCMagazine.com.
Hart, who said users often rely on a single password for everything because more complex passwords only thwart amateur intruders and ultimately place a burden on people who can’t remember them, explained, “This makes full-on identity theft even easier once that password has been stolen.”
While he gave Twitter the nod for offering “a number of excellent protection tools already,” Hart said they “only work if the user remembers to activate them.”
He urged online companies to provide multifactor authentication by default for online accounts “given the current security climate.”