How Hackers have manipulated Twitter’s Trending Algorithm for Years

Is it right to say that hackers have been manipulating Twitter’s trending algorithm? Let’s dig deeper.

Twitter has been one of the most powerful and influential social media platforms in the world, however lately, this platform has started to lose its powerful voice and charm to easily influence and inspire other people with its trending topics to the astroturfing attacks happening on this platform.

The trending algorithm of Twitter helps its users in knowing what keywords are trending and what are hashtag-worthy topics Twitter users can tweet about. This trending algorithm has helped its users for many years in this regard, but recently this news got out that the trending algorithm of Twitter has been tampered with by some professional hackers.

The researchers from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne (EPFL) have reached the conclusion that the trending algorithm of Twitter has fallen prey to the manipulation and the conspiracies of some experienced hackers who have been doing their best in adding and switching fake keywords and trending topics to the top of the trending algorithm list.

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According to one of the researchers of EPFL, Tugrulcan Elmas, these hackers have been launching astroturfing attacks on Twitter trending algorithm with the help of fake and compromised accounts they created by using some damaging software. Even though Twitter has been notified of this unauthorized and malicious activity, however, it still did not take the required and appropriate measures to eradicate this issue from its platform. Now, these fake Twitter trending keywords and topics account for 20% of global trends.