A Reuters news service Twitter account appeared to have been hacked Monday, as the news organization suddenly began tweeting messages supportive of the Syrian president.
According to screenshots from the Atlantic Wire, a Thomson Reuters corporate Twitter account @thomsonreuters began posting pro-president Bashar Al-Assad images Monday evening, followed by a tweet reading, "Always via Syrian Electronic Army (@Official_SEA12) #Syria #SyrianElectronicArmy pic.twitter.com/67plhvWgDD."
A Thomson Reuters spokesman told The Wall Street Journal's Digits blog Monday night in an email: “Earlier today @thomsonreuters was hacked. In this time, unauthorized individuals have posted fabricated tweets of which Thomson Reuters is not the source. The account has been suspended and is currently under investigation.”
In April, the SEA, a group described as "A collective of pro-Assad hackers and online activists," hacked an Associated Press Twitter account, leading to a drop in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The SEA also has hacked other news organizations including NPR, BBC and Al Jazeera.
HuffPost's Gerry Smith wrote at the time that the AP attack "showed how hackers are using so-called 'phishing' techniques to compromise Twitter accounts belonging to some of the most respected news agencies in the world, renewing questions about the social network's security measures."