A Definitive List of Recently ‘Hacked’ CEOs and Celebrities
Here’s a law of the Internet: As long as you exist online, hackers will try to hijack your personal accounts.
That warning gets exponential for people with high profiles and large social media followings. The greater the visibility, the bigger the bull’s-eye. What better way for a merry band of vandals to broadcast their digital hi-jinx?
Don’t take it from me, dear reader. Ask any one of these CEOs on Twitter who had to learn the hard way. Take heed and also read this plea from a cybersecurity reporter—yours truly—about securing your online accounts. No one else is going to do it for you!
Witness the wall of defacement:
Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO
Maybe the face of Facebook (FB) just didn’t care (last tweet January 2012), but @finkd’s Twitter password was apparently “dadada.” Time for a refresh, and implement two-factor authentication while you’re at it.
Sundar Pichai, Google CEO
Hackers commandeered Pichai’s Twitter apparently by going through his Quora account, which was linked to it. There, they cross-posted an ungrammatical question pertaining to Google (GOOG) Android software.
Jack Dorsey, Twitter and Square CEO; Dick Costolo and Evan Williams, ex-Twitter CEOs; and Biz Stone, Twitter co-founder
Even Twitter’s (TWTR) top tweeps are vulnerable. The hijackers apparently got into some of their accounts via linked sites, such as Pinterest and FourSquare. “We are just testing your security,” the hackers posted—how reassuring.
Daniel Ek, Spotify CEO
The same shady group that targeted many other execs, OurMine, also claimed responsibility for Ek’s hack. The self-proclaimed “security group” said it sells security services.
Travis Kalanick, Uber CEO
Again, OurMine posted on the high-profile CEO’s Twitter account after gaining access through Kalanick’s Quora account. Sensing a trend? Pro tip: You can revoke third-party applications’ access to your Twitter account here.
Brendan Iribe, Oculus CEO
The puppeteers in control of Iribe’s avatar took the opportunity to name a new CEO. How’s that for a succession announcement?
Werner Vogels, Amazon CTO
Okay, he’s not a CEO, but the tech boss behind cloud powerhouse Amazon (AMZN) Web Services had his profile jacked.
Mikkel Svane, Zendesk CEO
The digital vandals replaced Zendesk (ZEN) CEO Mikkel Svane’s photo with the image of a grotesque cartoon frog, a popular Internet meme.
For more on Svane, read “Why Zendesk CEO Mikkel Svane Obsesses Over Customer Service.”
Martin Shkreli, Turing Pharmaceuticals ex-CEO
The much-maligned former pharma chief, was apparently targeted by hackers, who altered his account name to “Martin The God” and posted “I am now a god” on his account. Then again, such stunts are not out of character.
Below is a roundup of other notable names recently “hacked” by OurMine and other password-pilfering pranksters. Cataloguing every single compromised account on the Internet would be a fool’s errand, of course. This is not meant to be comprehensive, but it does give a sense of the number and variety of virtual victims.
As you are now, so once was I…
- Sarah Silverman, comedian
- Mark Suster, Upfront Ventures VC
- Randi Zuckerberg, Zuck’s sister
- Anil Dash, technologist and blogger
- Markus Persson, founder of Minecraft
- TechCrunch, blog
- PewDeePie, YouTube star
- Jim Chapman, English YouTube star
- Kevin Allocca, head of YouTube trends
- Ree Drummond, Food Network star
- Matthew Yglesias, Vox Media staffer
- Joel Zimmerman or “deadmau5,” DJ
- Eric Wahlforss, SoundCloud founder
- Katy Perry, singer
- Kristian Nairn, “Game of Thrones” actor
- George Harrison, Beatle (deceased)
- Ezra Klein, Vox
- Channing Tatum, actor
- The NFL
- Drake, rapper
- Kylie Jenner, celebrity
- NASA’s Kepler telescope
- Tenacious D, band
- Lana Del Ray, singer
- Cody Wilson, singer
- Chelsea Handler, talk show host
- Ryan Dunn, actor (deceased)
A version of this article appears in the August 1, 2016 issue of Fortune with the headline “Hackers Pick Off Celebrity Execs on Twitter.”