The messages, which are being spammed out as Tweets, resemble the following:
followed by a link to the Chatwebcamfree website.
Twitter has confirmed that it has now reset the passwords of all compromised accounts which should cease the tidal wave of spam messages for the time being.
Mystery currently surrounds how the criminals compromised the Twitter accounts. Sophos recommends that all affected users should scan their computers with an up-to-date anti-virus product, and think carefully about their password security.
Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos said:
If a hacker has managed to ascertain your Twitter password then there is a chance that they may have also compromised your system in other ways too. We're seeing more and more attacks from spammers, phishers, malware authors, scammers and identity thieves against users of social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook - similar adult webcam messages were spotted on Facebook just last month. These aren't just proof-of-concept attacks in controlled conditions - they're everyday full-blooded assaults making money out of real people.