A 19-year-old Austrian who goes by the name of Firo XL on Twitter (real name Florian) was responsible for the Tweetdeck malfunction that led to the entire system to be taken down yesterday.
The teen stumbled upon a vulnerability on the Tweetdeck system, which had actually been discovered in 2011. Firo maintains that it wasn’t a hack. Nevertheless thousands of people (probably including some of our followers) received a note on their timeline filled with German words and HTML code. Tweetdeck voluntarily took down the system to correct the problem.
The Verge spoke with Florian, who says the whole incident was an accident, even if it was a huge one. He was playing around with different codes when he came across the commands. One tweet filled with code was retweeted 37,000 times. Florian, a tech student in Austria, celebrated finding the hole, but said he felt bad about the whole situation.
“It’s horror that TweetDeck made that mistake. It’s horror that [hackers] are using this issue. I don’t know. I’m sad in a way,” he said.
We’ve never been saddened by a tech glitch, but glad to know that Florian isn’t an evil hacker trying to takeover our identities through HTML code.