Tesco’s Twitter account seems to have fallen into the wrong hands, judging by the account’s activity today, and the company is currently in the process of restoring the profile to its previous condition.
People following Tesco on Twitter received weird tweet notifications from the groceries and general merchandise retailer and noticed uncommon behavior on the account.
A pinned tweet was what suggested that a hack had occurred as the message pushed a Bitcoin cryptocurrency scam, asking Tesco followers to send coins to a wallet and promising to send back twice the value.
While the tweet was from Tesco’s official account with half a million followers, the verification mark was no longer present and the cryptocurrency ruse indicated that something was wrong.
Luckily, Tesco’s customers did not fall for the Bitcoin scheme as the wallet address had no funds and zero transactions at the time of writing.
Clear signals that someone else was controlling Tesco’s Twitter and having fun with it poured in as the hacker started retweeting Bill Gates and even impersonating him.
To this end, they changed Tesco’s profile name to Bill Gates, added Microsoft founder’s current Twitter pic and modified the account username to @Billgatesmsc, an account that is now deleted.
The @tesco account has mysteriously morphed into Bill Gates pic.twitter.com/PSRCZ5ZT95
— carpet (@WHS_Carpet) June 24, 2019
It is unclear when the blue “verified account” tick was lost, but this is a consequence of changing the Twitter username.
The attacker then started replying to complaining Tesco customers, asking some of them for private details such as full name, home address and postcode, purportedly to fix things.
The replies must have raised a few eyebrows as the attacker tried to obtain the details while still impersonating Bill Gates.
Another wave of weird actions was noticed when the hacker started to follow Tesco customers completely out of the blue.
Of course, such an incident could not go by without some jokes.
Tesco got hacked. This is karma for putting the freddos upto 26p!
— CrazyMammaBear(@LatersBitchhh) June 24, 2019
Tesco is a British multinational with more than 6,800 shops across the world. While it left the U.S. market in 2013, it increased its presence in other countries, currently serving customers in the United Kingdom, Ireland, China, India, Malaysia, Thailand, Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia, and Poland.
At the moment it looks like the company managed to regain control over their Twitter account. The unauthorized tweets have been deleted and the profile and header photos have been restored. The only indication that the account was lost are the dozens of tweets documenting the incident with pictures of the hacker’s activity.