Twitter has started to label some tweets with a warning about materials “obtained through hacking.” This new label is appearing on some news stories that Twitter believes are based on hacks and leaked documents, but Twitter users have found an easy way to hack a URL together to make it appear on any tweet.
The new label appeared on a story from independent outlet The Grayzone this week. If you share the URL of this particular story, it will generate the warning. But Twitter also displays the warning if you trick it into doing so by using a specially crafted link to a genuine URL combined with the flagged one. This tricks Twitter’s card-based system into accidentally flagging tweets with this new warning.
— Tom Warren (@tomwarren) February 24, 2021
The warning trick works on both web and Twitter’s mobile apps for iOS and Android, and it even appears to crash the Android version if you attempt to like a tweet that includes this new label.
Twitter’s new controversial hacked materials warning comes after the company was criticized for blocking links to New York Post stories about Joe Biden’s son. Twitter quickly reversed its decision to block links and put a policy in place to use these warning labels instead.
This appears to be one of the first times we’ve seen this label in action as part of Twitter’s hacked materials policy. Twitter has also used similar labels for combating misleading COVID-19 information and Trump’s myriad of misleading and false tweets.
We’ve reached out to Twitter for comment on when the company will fix its new label, and we’ll update you accordingly.