Twitter says it was just an accident that caused the microblogging giant to let advertisers use private information to better target their marketing materials at users.
The social networking giant on Tuesday admitted to an “error” that let advertisers have access to the private information customers had given Twitter in order to place additional security protections on their accounts.
“We recently discovered that when you provided an email address or phone number for safety or security purposes (for example, two-factor authentication) this data may have inadvertently been used for advertising purposes, specifically in our Tailored Audiences and Partner Audiences advertising system,” Twitter said.
“When an advertiser uploaded their marketing list, we may have matched people on Twitter to their list based on the email or phone number the Twitter account holder provided for safety and security purposes. This was an error and we apologize.”
Twitter assures users that no “personal” information was shared, though we’re not sure what Twitter would consider “personal information” if your phone number and email address do not meet the bar.