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Twitter apologises for Wendi Deng ding dong

Fake account fools the world
Wed Jan 04 2012, 10:08

A SOCIAL NETWORKING ACCOUNT thought to belong to Rupert Murdoch's wife does not, despite Twitter telling the world that it does.

The Wendi Deng account sprang up shortly after Rupert Murdoch joined the world of social networking, and was taken as real, and quite fun, by all that saw it, including Twitter, which granted it 'verified' status meaning that it is run by who it says it is run by. Unfortunately it was not.

"Hello Twitter. it's time to confirm that yes, this is a fake account. I'm not Wendi," wrote the author after playing the media along. "Verifiably not @rupertmurdoch's wife. Unless you're Twitter. Or News International. SPOOF ACCOUNT."

Twitter acknowledged its mistake, saying, "We can confirm that the @wendi_deng account was mistakenly verified for a short period of time and apologize for the confusion this caused."

The "confusion" was more embarrassment for Twitter, at least if you listen to Sophos security expert Graham Cluley.

Cluley said that the episode raised a number of questions about Twitter's verification process. "Questions need to be asked as to how the bogus Wendi Deng's account ended up verified by Twitter, when it appears that the brainbox behind the mischief never asked them to approve the account," he wrote in a blog post.

"And although no harm was done on this occasion, it's possible to imagine how someone with more malicious intentions could have taken advantage of the situation." µ

 

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