Fox News host Sean Hannity's Twitter account briefly disappeared for a couple hours Friday night, prompting rampant speculation as to what happened.
The disappearance occurred after Hannity sent out a mysterious tweet, which read: "Form Submission 1649 | #Hannity."
After a few hours the verified account reappeared. Hannity has yet to tweet since the incident and Twitter did return a request for comment on what may have happened.
The Daily Beast, however, did obtain a statement from a Twitter spokesperson, saying Hannity's account was "briefly compromised."
“While we normally do not discuss individual accounts, for privacy and security reasons, we have permission from the account owner to confirm that account was briefly compromised. We are working with the owner to restore access," the Twitter spokesperson said.
Hannity himself commented on his account troubles via two tweets Saturday evening.
"I’m baaaccckk... a lot to say- Thanks for the support all you deplorable, irredeemables. Can’t get rid of me that easy. Too much work to do exposing #deepstategate—-Monday’s a big day…tick tock," he said. I just want to take a moment and thank my twitter friends for all of your support in the last 22 hours. It means more to me than you will ever know. God bless you all. Thank you Sean."
I’m baaaccckk... a lot to say- Thanks for the support all you deplorable, irredeemables. Can’t get rid of me that easy. Too much work to do exposing #deepstategate—-Monday’s a big day…tick tock.— Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) January 28, 2018
I just want to take a moment and thank my twitter friends for all of your support in the last 22 hours. It means more to me than you will ever know. God bless you all. Thank you Sean— Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) January 28, 2018
The tweet about "Form Submission 1649" by then had been deleted.
Several politicos and journalists commented on the disappearance and what "Form Submission 1649" could mean, with some of them joking about some sort of conspiracy to silence the right-wing firebrand who is also a staunch supporter of President Trump.
Notorious conspiracy theorist, Alex Jones of Infowars, suggested that the "deep state" took out the account.
A search for Hannity's account at the time of its disappearance prompted only a screen that said: "Sorry, that page does not exist."
The account previously had more than 3.3 million followers according to a screen-capture archive, and appears to be recovering that number. It had 2.9 million by the end of Saturday.
A similar incident happened in December to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. His follower count had significantly dropped upon account's return, but then dramatically rose back up. A spokeswoman for the company pointed out at the time that Twitter's guidance on reactivating an account says "account data (such as Tweets, followers, favorites, etc.) may take a few minutes to fully restore."
Assange was one of the Twitter users who took note of Hannity's Twitter debacle.
The most watched TV host in the U.S., @SeanHannity has his Twitter account (3.3 million followers) mysteriously disappear after tweeting "Submission Form 1649" https://t.co/jIw0Lq5K1m pic.twitter.com/Op3b2h24Zu— Julian Assange ⌛ (@JulianAssange) January 27, 2018
In the month prior to Assange's Twitter blackout, President Trump's very active Twitter account went dark for 11 minutes. But that was due to a Twitter customer support employee on his last day.
In the case of Hannity, CNN's Donie O'Sullivan pointed out that Hannity's Twitter bio last week last week added the line: "Due to hackings, no DM’s!"
No word on why @seanhannity's Twitter account went down last night. Hannity added this line to his Twitter bio just last week: "Due to hackings, no DM’s!" pic.twitter.com/wSqBYL6Rgu— Donie O'Sullivan (@donie) January 27, 2018