Top Stories
Top Stories
Tech

Twitter freaked out and sent notifications with random strings of numbers and letters, and now we know why

Key Points
  • Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey explained that a bug caused what would normally be invisible, back-end notifications to become visible for a short period.
  • The issue started just before 1 p.m. in New York. After a few minutes, Dorsey said the problem "should be fixed."
  • So far it appears to be a pretty harmless bug.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey testifies before the House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on Twitter's algorithms and content monitoring on Capitol Hill in Washington, September 5, 2018.
Chris Wattie | Reuters

Twitter briefly freaked out Tuesday and started sending notifications with only random strings of numbers and letters — and now we know why.

CEO Jack Dorsey explained that a bug caused what would normally be invisible, back-end notifications to become visible for a short period.

Twitter Support described the invisible codes as how the app talks to your phone.

The issue started just before 1 p.m. in New York. After a few minutes, Dorsey said the problem "should be fixed."

So far it appears to be a pretty harmless bug, and comes just days after social media giant Facebook updated its users about a widespread hack of its platform. But for a few fleeting minutes, the random characters bug served as fodder for jokes.