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FBI probes NBC News Twitter feed hack

The FBI is investigating a hack on the Twitter feed of NBC News which spread false rumours of a terror attack on Ground Zero.

The FBI has launched an investigation into last night's hack on the NBC News Twitter feed which claimed hijackers had carried out a terror attack at Ground Zero.

Hackers wrote on the news station's feed that a civilian airliner had been hijacked and crashed into the former site of the World Trade Center, scene of the attacks on 11 September 2001. Tomorrow is the tenth anniversary of the attacks.

The Script Kiddies, an offshoot of hacking groups Anonymous and Lulzsec, quickly claimed responsibility for the hack. The group was also responsible for the hack on Fox News' Twitter feed on 4 July that claimed US president Barack Obama had been fatally shot.

"Breaking News!" the first tweet read. "Ground Zero has just been attacked. Flight 5736 has crashed into the site, suspected hijacking, more as the story develops." Three minutes later, another said, "Flight 4782 is not responding, suspected hijacking. One plane just hit Ground Zero site at 5.47. #groundzeroattacked."

The third tweet said it wasn't a joke, that it was trying to get reporters to the scene. A minute later The Script Kiddies claimed responsibility in the next tweet.

The postings were taken down minutes after appearing. NBC News anchor Brian Williams read a statement on the Friday night news, saying the network was "working with Twitter to correct the situation." He also apologised "for the scare that could have been caused by such a reckless and irresponsible act."

FBI officials confirmed last night agents from the bureau's computer crimes unit were investigating, but refused to disclose any findings.

At 4.24am US time, @NBCNews tweeted: "Our account is secure and under control. Apologize for the scare. We value your trust."

Image credit: CNET