So it wasn’t Anderson Cooper who called Donald Trump a pathetic loser on Twitter after all…

Fake News!

Graham Cluley
Graham Cluley
@[email protected]

So it wasn't Anderson Cooper who called Donald Trump a pathetic loser on Twitter after all...

CNN anchor Anderson Cooper found himself making headlines last week when his Twitter account appeared to have said something apparently designed to bruise the US president’s ego.

Anderson tweet

Oh Really? You endorsed him you tool! Pathetic loser.

CNN and Anderson Cooper himself at first claimed that the steely-eyed grand inquisitor’s account may have been hacked…

Anderson Cooper tweet

… but inevitably some jumped to the conclusion that perhaps Anderson Cooper had impulsively sent the tweet.

Sign up to our free newsletter.
Security news, advice, and tips.

Looking back through Cooper’s old tweets, I think that’s unlikely and it doesn’t fit with his other communications.

Of course, it’s always possible that Anderson Cooper has more than one Twitter account – one for professional work, and another where he chills and anonymously takes drunken potshots at public figures.

Or *maybe* Anderson Cooper isn’t the only person who uses his Twitter account. After all, with almost 10 million followers that account is going to have a value to CNN’s marketing department – and it might be a bit much to ask one of your stars to tweet promotions for upcoming shows.

Sure enough, a CNN investigation confirmed that Anderson Cooper does have an assistant who has access to the @andersoncooper Twitter account:

Geolocation tools confirm that the tweet in question was not sent from Anderson Cooper’s phone. Anderson was in Washington, and we have proof the tweet was sent from New York, from a phone belonging to his assistant. His assistant inadvertently left his phone unlocked and unattended at the gym early this morning, and someone took the phone and sent the tweet. His assistant, who has worked with Anderson for more than a decade, is the only other person with access to Anderson’s Twitter account.

So, it wasn’t Anderson Cooper. It wasn’t even Anderson’s assistant. It was a phantom gym monkey who stumbled across Anderson Cooper’s assistant’s smartphone and rather than do anything either a) funnier or b) more malicious, chose just to send a single tweet to the US President.

Right… that sounds most likely.

Lock your phones folks, and be careful about who you grant access to your Twitter account.

Graham Cluley is an award-winning keynote speaker who has given presentations around the world about cybersecurity, hackers, and online privacy. A veteran of the computer security industry since the early 1990s, he wrote the first ever version of Dr Solomon's Anti-Virus Toolkit for Windows, makes regular media appearances, and is the co-host of the popular "Smashing Security" podcast. Follow him on Twitter, Mastodon, Threads, Bluesky, or drop him an email.

3 comments on “So it wasn’t Anderson Cooper who called Donald Trump a pathetic loser on Twitter after all…”

  1. StewGreen

    Graham, my guess would be that SOMEONE sent that tweet
    That someone has a Twitter account under an assumed name that they use to express private opinions.
    And that they simply picked up their work phone already logged in under Anderson Cooper account and fired off a sneer, mistakenly thinking they were on their other phone/account.
    Obviously that someone would probably be a CNN assistant.
    If I left my phone down in the gym I don't think the "hilarious/devious" thing a passer by would do is fire off one sneer at Trump and then put the phone back down.

    1. coyote · in reply to StewGreen

      No? What if the person (1) (a) dislikes or hates Trump OR (b) thinks it would be funny to make him (Cooper, say) look bad (in his/her opinion) and (2) is on a limited time schedule: exercise and get out of there for whatever they have next planned.

      Or perhaps they just want to take the piss out of Trump and/or Cooper (and I include here embarrassing Cooper). Many possible explanations and it's entirely possible that the explanation given is indeed what happened.

  2. Techno

    Reminds me of my MP, who was apparently tweeting business as usual political messages when she was in labour (having a baby, not Labour the political party).

    Of course, it was a member of her team who shared the password who was doing it. But it was quite funny when somebody in the media picked up on it and said, in all seriousness, look at this superwoman, tweeting about politics when she is in labour.

What do you think? Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.