This IPO Won't Happen Soon

Forget it, Fool. Google (Nasdaq: GOOG  ) won't touch Twitter. Neither will Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT  ) , nor Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL  ) . David Naylor, a U.K.-based search marketing expert, on Tuesday showed how an enterprising hacker might distribute malicious code via tweets.

The trick, Naylor said in a blog post, is to change the reference links Twitter inserts into applications that access its API. Instead of a simple administrative command, a hacker could change the link to a site that downloads digital devilry. Yuck.

"If you change the link in the application settings, it affects all of the historical tweets generated by the application. So it's pretty quick and easy to experiment with different URLs and see what happens," Naylor wrote.

Translation: We're all one sneaky link away from losing control of our Twitter accounts.

This isn't the first time Twitter's had issues. A massive data breach exposed sensitive documents. Profile updates have been wiped clean without warning. And lately, downtime has occurred weekly, and sometimes daily.

All of which is unfortunate. Twitter would add heft to an IPO class whose best prospects seem to be OpenTable (Nasdaq: OPEN  ) , Changyou (Nasdaq: CYOU  ) , Rosetta Stone (NYSE: RST  ) , and SolarWinds (NYSE: SWI  ) . Good businesses all, but they're lightweights compared to social-networking superstars such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and yes, Twitter.

But you can forget a Twitter IPO. Forget an M&A deal, too. So long as miscreants have it this easy, Twitter will remain exactly as it is: private and under assault.

Get your clicks with related Foolishness:

Apple is a Stock Advisor selection. Microsoft is an Inside Value pick. Google and OpenTable are Rule Breakers recommendations. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

Fool contributor Tim Beyers had stock and options positions in Apple and Google at the time of publication. Check out Tim's portfolio holdings and Foolish writings, or connect with him on Twitter as @milehighfool. The Motley Fool is also on Twitter as @TheMotleyFool. The Fool's disclosure policy isn't talking. Quit trying to make it laugh.


Read/Post Comments (1) | Recommend This Article (0)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Add your comment.

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 972028, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 10/30/2014 11:34:42 AM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Apple's next smart device (warning, it may shock you

Apple recently recruited a secret-development "dream team" to guarantee its newest smart device was kept hidden from the public for as long as possible. But the secret is out. In fact, ABI Research predicts 485 million of this type of device will be sold per year. But one small company makes Apple's gadget possible. And its stock price has nearly unlimited room to run for early-in-the-know investors. To be one of them, and see Apple's newest smart gizmo, just click here!


Advertisement