Biz Break: Twitter gets hit as NFL’s account gets hacked

Top Of The Order:  

Are You Ready For Some Hacking?: Well, this is not one of the best ways for a relationship to start.

The National Football League said Tuesday that its official Twitter account had been hacked earlier in the day, and the league was quick to deny a tweet that went out saying that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell had died.

The first tweet from the hacker of the NFL's official @NFL Twitter account.

The first tweet from the hacker of the NFL’s official @NFL Twitter account.









That tweet was soon deleted, as the NFL denied Goodell’s passing. Still, as the message says, it was retweeted more than 1,700 times before the NFL’s tech gurus were able to take it down. The hacker then sent out two more tweets in which he took a couple of shots at the NFL’s network security methods:

NFL Twitter 2







NFL Twitter 3




This was the second high-profile hack of a Twitter account in the last few days. On Monday, we reported on how Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg had his rarely used Twitter account hacked into over the weekend.

The embarrassment of having the NFL’s account hacked came on the same day that SunTrust Robinson Humphrey analyst Bob Peck said that if Twitter continues to struggle, it could become a prime acquisition candidate next year. There were also reports that Twitter’s executive shakeups are continuing, and that the company has replaced its head of product, Jeff Seibert.

Now, Goodell isn’t the most popular league commissioner, especially among New England Patriots fans. But even “Sully” from Southie (A Boston reference, folks) would have to have more than a few Sam Adams Boston Lagers in him to wish that much ill will on the commissioner. The sports website Deadspin said it appeared that someone tweeting under the handle of @IDissEverything was responsible for the hacking of the NFL’s Twitter account.

You have to wonder if some of the NFL’s higher-ups got on the phone and gave Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey an earful about his company’s security protocols. In April, Twitter and the NFL announced a deal that will have Twitter livestream all 10 of the NFL’s Thursday Night Football games this fall. Maybe by then, Twitter will have more security in place to keep someone from hacking into the NFL games and pulling what the Seahawks’ Richard Sherman did to the 49ers when he tipped that pass in the end zone back in 2014

Middle Innings:

Thanks For Coming, But…: Just when the saga of Lending Club seems to be taking a breather, along come the crash-cart paddles to shock it back into the spotlight.

On Tuesday, it was the online loan marketplace’s shareholders’ meeting. Or, rather, it wasn’t the online loan marketplace’s shareholders’ meeting. That’s because the company, just as it was starting its meeting, said it was postponing its meeting, and then, in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing, said it was rescheduling its meeting for June 28.

“Given the developments of the last few weeks, the company is not yet in a position to provide its stockholders a complete report on the state of the company,” Lending Club said in its SEC filing.

Those developments include the surprise resignation of Lending Club CEO Renaud Laplanche in early May, after a company investigation turned up loans that were made in an inappropriate manner, and a Department of Justice probe of the company.

Now, go back and read the last part of that Lending Club statement again. “The company is not yet in a position to provide its shareholders a complete report on the state of the company.” Really? You just put off your shareholders right as your one-time-a-year meeting with them was set to start? I think that’s as complete a report about a company as you can give.

Then again, there are fewer shareholders of Lending Club to attend the meeting. In another SEC filing, Lending Club said that Baillie Gifford & Co., a U.K.-based investment firm, no longer owned any more shares in Lending Club. Not that that’s a big deal: Baillie Gifford only owned 34.6 million shares of Lending Club stock, or 9.1 percent of the company’s outstanding stock.

And when something happens like a big shareholder bailing out, others tend to follow. Lending Club shares fell 7.4 percent to close Tuesday at $4.39, and are down more than 60 percent for the year.

Bottom Of The Lineup:

Here’s a look at how some leading Silicon Valley stocks did Tuesday…

Movin’ On Up: Elon Musk had a good day, as Tesla Motors shares climbed more than 5 percent. Billionaire investor Ron Baron, who owns about 1 percent of Tesla’s stock, said the electric carmaker is in a position to become one of the largest companies in the U.S. in the coming years. Other gains came from Intersil, QuinStreet, Integrated Device Technology and RingCentral.

In The Red: Well, there was Lending Club, but decliners also included Silver Spring Networks, Sigma Designs, Genomic Health, Aemetis and Imperva.

The tech-focused Nasdaq Composite Index slipped by 0.2 percent to 4,961.

The blue chip Dow Jones Industrial Average edged up by 0.1 percent to 17,938.

And the broad-based Standard & Poor’s 500 Index also added 0.1 percent to finish the day at 2,112.

Quote Of The Day:  One for the Rush fans out there today…”We are the priests/Of the Temples/Of Syrinx” — Neil Peart, in honor of the S&P 500 closing at 2112.

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Photo: Screenshot of the first tweet from the hacker of the NFL’s official Twitter account. The image, and the suspected hacker’s account, have been deleted.


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