Hackers have posted swastika symbols and messages in Turkish from thousands of Twitter accounts including official government departments, media sites and charities.

The BBC, Forbes, Amnesty International, the Department of Health and the European Parliament were all victims of the attack, as hijackers used the hashtag #Nazilmanya and #Nazihollanda, meaning “Nazi Germany” and “Nazi Holland”.

Nazi symbols were also posted. On Forbes and other sites a Turkish flag was also added to their background picture and the coat of arms of the Ottoman Empire used as their display picture.

The rogue posts have since been deleted, but many users are sharing screenshots of the tweets.

The accounts which fell victim to the attacks were all apparently using a third-party analytics service called Twitter Counter. It has been alleged the attack was caused due to a vulnerability in the app.

According to tech site Gizmodo, this reported vulnerability can be limited if you’re a user of Twitter Counter. Heading to “Settings and Privacy”, then “Apps” you can disable third-party access to the app.

Twitter counter
(Twitter Counter/Screengrab)

Who carried out the hack is not entirely clear but it comes in the wake of escalating tensions between Turkey and Germany and the Netherlands.

President Tayyip Erdogan has repeatedly made accusations of European “Nazism” and accused Germany of hiding terrorists after they had moved to support the Dutch in a row over Turkish political campaigning abroad.

Following the hack, many of the official pages have moved to apologise and said they were investigating the breach.