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Fake Wendi Deng account raises doubts on Twitter verification

Updated: 2012-01-04 07:39
( Xinhua)

Fake Wendi Deng account raises doubts on Twitter verification 

News Corporation Chairman and Chief Executive Rupert Murdoch (C) arrives home with his wife Wendi Deng in New York July 20, 2011.  [Photo/Agencies]

SAN FRANCISCO - Twitter's verification process faces more doubts on Tuesday after a British man admitted that he had managed a Twitter account under the name of Wendi Deng Murdoch and received verification from the micro-blogging service.

The fake Wendi Deng account was launched on Sunday after News Corp Chairman and CEO Rupert Murdoch joined Twitter with his verified account on Saturday right before the New Year. The impostor has tweeted more than 100 times since Sunday.

The account holder tweeted on Tuesday that "Hello Twitter. As News International has finally come to their senses, it's time to confirm that yes, this is a fake account. I'm not Wendi."

He told British newspaper Guardian that he was a British man living in London and had just set up the account over the boring New Year holiday.

"And you have to wonder even more why Twitter verified this account for a full day. I never received any communication from them about this," the man said in a tweet.

For verified Twitter account, a verified badge, a white check in a blue background, can be seen next to the user's full name on the profile.

Media reports cast doubts on Twitter's verification process, questioning its ability to expose impostors. According to technology news site TechCrunch, Twitter, which has revealed little about its verification process, often uses celebrities' official home pages as a source for the verification -- if there is a link to the Twitter account posted there, it is legit.

"But in the case of public persons, it appears that Twitter trusted the numerous media reports claiming the account's legitimacy instead," said TechCrunch.

Twitter said in a statement that "We don't comment on our verification process but can confirm that the @wendi_deng account was mistakenly verified for a short period of time. We apologize for the confusion this caused."