Twitter Inc. has urged its more than 330 million users to change their passwords after a glitch caused some to be stored in readable text on its internal computer system rather than disguised by a process known as “hashing”, according to a report by Reuters.
The firm revealed the issue through a blog post and series of Tweets on Thursday afternoon, saying it had resolved the problem and an internal investigation had found no indication passwords were stolen or misused by insiders. However, it urged all users to consider changing their passwords.
“We fixed the bug and have no indication of a breach or misuse by anyone,” chief executive Jack Dorsey said in a Tweet. “As a precaution, consider changing your password on all services where you’ve used this password.”
The blog did not say how many passwords were affected. A person familiar with the company’s response said the number was “substantial” and that they were exposed for “several months”, according to Twitter report.
The disclosure comes as lawmakers and regulators around the world scrutinise the way that companies store and secure consumer data, after a string of security incidents at Equifax Inc, Facebook Inc and Uber Technologies Inc.
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission, which investigates companies accused of deceptive practices related to data security, declined comment on the password glitch, Reuters reported.
The glitch was related to Twitter’s use of “hashing” and caused passwords to be written on an internal computer log before the scrambling process was completed, the blog said.
“We are very sorry this happened,” the Twitter blog said.