On February 18 of that year, it was the big story of the day. Someone took control of @BurgerKing and changed its name to McDonald’s, its logo to to that of McDonald’s, and its bio to include “Just sold to McDonald’s because the whopper flopped.” At the time, it seemed a win-win: Burger King quickly topped 100,000 followers after the stunt. The next day, A similar fate befell @Jeep, which changed its bio to “sold to Cadillac.”
Wednesday, prosecutors charged 25-year-old Cameron Lacroix, from New Bedford, Massachusetts, with hacking charges that sounded very similar to that Burger King Twitter takeover. They don’t name the fast food giant by name, but it’s hard to imagine who else “Corporation A” could be:
Lacroix changed the passwords to Jeep and Corporation A’s Twitter accounts, assumed control of those accounts, and proceeded to deface them with text and pictures. (For example, Corporation A’s feed falsely reported that the company had been sold to its chief competitor.)
Lacroix has already pled guilty to the much more serious crimes of computer intrusion and device fraud, part of a 2011 spree of hacking law enforcement and colleges, and stealing 14,000 people’s credit card information.
Burger King’s Twitter account, meanwhile, has become a boring exercise in safe Twitter branding. It’s recently been tweeting awful jokes like “Coffee is my sanity” and “I was going to do things today, but, you know, fries.”
H/T Ars Technica | Illustration by Jason Reed