Johannesburg - Musician and actor NaakMusiq and music producer Nkanyezi Kubheka have become the latest celebrities to have their Twitter accounts hacked.
NaakMusiq, real name Anga Makubalo, was a verified account holder with over 500 000 followers while Kubheka had 750 000 followers.
Many Twitter users had been making a joke of Kubheka’s misery, taking jabs at his new account which consisted of a little over 3 000 followers at the time of publication.
In NaakMusiq’s case, his hackers have gone on to try and solicit money from his friends and followers pretending to be the former Isidingo star.
Hacking is a criminal offence that carries a jail term in South Africa as it infringes on the right to privacy.
According to the Electronic Communication and Transactions Act, the unauthorised access or interception of data is a crime and in their view hacking, cracking and packet sniffing would fall within this category.
Social media law expert and author Emma Sadleir said: “Accounts can be protected in various ways to prevent or minimise the chance of being hacked.”
Sadleir shared that choosing a good password would help in ensuring the safety of one’s account.
“Make sure that you change your password frequently. The longer and more obscure the password, the longer it takes the software to get to it. ‘Password01’ is not a good password.
“Don’t make all your passwords on all your platforms the same, especially important apps like banking apps,” said Sadleir.
Hiding your email address is another vital way to protect accounts.
“Some platforms allow people to see your email address, like Facebook. Your email has a privacy setting (this controls who it is shared with) and a setting that controls if your email address shows on your profile or not.
“You can choose to show your email address on your profile, but you have the option to choose whether it’s just your friends that see it or the public.”
The good news is you can recover a hacked account.
“Most platforms have an ‘account recovery’ page that you can navigate to and then follow the steps to recover your hacked account,” Sadleir said.