SEC’s X account fell victim to SIM swap attack

The SEC’s X attack happened after the agency disabled two-factor authentication in July 2023

article-image

Artwork by Crystal Le

share

The US Securities and Exchange Commission admitted that the two-factor authentication on its X account had been disabled since July 2023. 

The SEC’s official X account was compromised earlier this month. An unauthorized person was able to not only access the account itself, but made a fake post announcing the approval of spot bitcoin ETFs. 

The post was left up on the account for roughly 15 minutes before Chair Gary Gensler took to his own account to announce that the SEC’s had been compromised. 

In a follow up statement detailing what happened, the SEC said that X support asked the regulatory agency to disable the multi-factor authentication after the agency had difficulty accessing the account. 

Read more: ‘A real low point’: Congressman calls out SEC bitcoin ETF drama during House hearing

“MFA remained disabled until staff re-enabled it after the account was compromised on Jan. 9. MFA currently is enabled for all SEC social media accounts that offer it,” the statement said. 

The hacker was able to access the account through a SIM swap, which is when a phone number is transferred to another device without authorization. 

“Access to the phone number occurred via the telecom carrier, not via SEC systems. SEC staff have not identified any evidence that the unauthorized party gained access to SEC systems, data, devices or other social media accounts,” the SEC said.  

Read more: SEC should be held accountable for X account compromise: US senator says

The regulatory body is working with the Federal Bureau of Investigations, Homeland Security, the US Department of Justice and its own Division of Enforcement to track down the attacker. The agency previously disclosed that the FBI and Homeland Security’s cybersecurity department were involved in the investigation. 

“Among other things, law enforcement is currently investigating how the unauthorized party got the carrier to change the SIM for the account and how the party knew which phone number was associated with the account,” the statement continued.


Don’t miss the next big story – join our free daily newsletter.

Tags

Upcoming Events

Hilton Metropole | 225 Edgware Rd, London

Mon - Wed, March 18 - 20, 2024

Crypto’s premier institutional conference returns to London in March 2024. The DAS: London Experience: Attend expert-led panel discussions and fireside chats Hear the latest developments regarding the crypto and digital asset regulatory environment directly from policymakers and experts.

Salt Lake City, UT

WED - FRI, OCTOBER 9 - 11, 2024

Pack your bags, anon — we’re heading west! Join us in the beautiful Salt Lake City for the third installment of Permissionless. Come for the alpha, stay for the fresh air. Permissionless III promises unforgettable panels, killer networking opportunities, and mountains […]

recent research

Research report - cover graphics (1).jpg

Research

In this report, we dive into crypto private market data to gather insights on where the future of the industry is headed. Despite a notable downturn in private raises, capital continues to infuse promising projects that aim to transform payments, banking, consumer experiences, community, and more, with 2023 being the fourth-largest year for crypto venture capital.

article-image

BUZZ holds shares of Coinbase, Robinhood and MicroStrategy

article-image

Opinion: Even though I didn’t pay for my “Diamond Hands” burger with BTC, don’t let that fool you into thinking that crypto’s development is futile

article-image

The results mark “a major positive inflection point,” one analyst says, as the exchange carries net income momentum into a crypto rally

article-image

While the slate of 10 US spot bitcoin funds have tallied $4.6 billion of net inflows thus far, half of the field is lagging the leaders

article-image

Trading volumes totalled $154 billion in Q4, including $125 billion in institutional volume

article-image

DeFi on Bitcoin is all the rage right now and Stacks is positioned to benefit