The Twitter admitted the occurrence of a bug in their systems that would be revealing publicly the content of tweets private accounts on devices with Android operating system. According to the company, the crash was fixed on February 14 and affected users were informed of the problem shortly thereafter.
The crash came into play when a user who made use of the “Protect Your Tweets” feature (that lock that ensures that your Twitter profile will only be viewed by those authorized to follow you) would make some kind of change to your account settings, how to change the sender email in your account. In doing so, the feature was turned off without the user realizing or authorizing it.
What is noteworthy is the time that has been happening: Twitter said that users may have been affected between November 3, 2014 and January 14, 2019 – just under five years. The company’s error has a considerable size and, for example, in mainland European countries, this can lead to legal action because of General Data Protection Regulation, the current user data protection legislation in the Old Continent.
It tells the company that it can only notify users whose accounts it has been able to confirm some impact from the bug, but does not have a complete list of how many or which accounts are those. Therefore, it is impossible to bring an estimate of affected users.
Worth the alert, so: If you have an Android device you use Twitter for, check your security settings. Furthermore, if you make use of the ‘Protect your Tweets’ feature and are still receiving notifications of new followers without your direct authorization, then it is safe to say that your account is one of those affected.