Rep. Bill Johnson's Twitter hacked, graphic image put in profile

Freshman Rep. Bill Johnson's (R-Ohio) Twitter account was hacked Wednesday night, his office confirmed to The Hill.

An unknown hacker sent out two tweets and changed the profile picture to a graphic image.

"Late Wednesday night, we learned that Congressman Johnson’s official Twitter account had been compromised by an unauthorized user. We took immediate steps to delete two unauthorized tweets and an in appropriate [sic] photograph. We are currently working with U.S. Capitol Police, House Information Security and Twitter to resolve this matter," Johnson communications director Jessica Towhey said in a statement.

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The incident comes almost a month after Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) resigned because of a scandal involving his Twitter account. The former lawmaker originally said his account had been hacked but later admitted he sent lewd pictures of himself to women over the Internet.

The unauthorized tweets from Johnson's account were "a jumble of letters, not a coherent message," according to a person who saw them.

They were discovered within about eight minutes of being posted, according to the time stamps on the tweets, the source said, noting a fellow Twitter user noticed the hack and notified the congressman's office via Twitter of incident.

Another person who saw the tweets said they were actually the name and song titles from a girls' group out of Indonesia.

The hack likely came out of there, according to a source involved in the investigation.

The tweets read: #np trio macan - talak tilu" and #np keong racun."

In addition to the tweets, the account's profile picture was changed into a digitally altered photograph of a man's torso, including the genital area.

The tweets have been taken down and the profile picture has been changed to an egg, which is the default avatar for Twitter accounts.

"If anyone was offended by that picture we certainly apologize," an official in Johnson's office said. "We took the steps we believed were necessary with Congressman Johnson's official Twitter account."

Johnson's office also tweeted about the incident Wednesday evening, writing: "Folks, this account has been hacked. We apologize for anything offensive from the account recently. Thank you as we work to figure this out."

The account also thanked the person who alerted them to the hack.

Capitol Police are investigating the matter, according to Johnson's office, as are officials at Twitter and Tweet Congress.

Johnson's office declined to say if they would press charges if the hacker is discovered, noting they were waiting on findings and recommendations from Capitol Police.

"We are comfortable with the response we've gotten from everyone," said the official.

The office also said they'd followed recommendations from Twitter on changing the account's settings to prevent an attack from happening again.

The GOP leadership offices were also informed of the event.

-- This post was updated at 1:08 p.m.

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