For the past few days, there has been a cacophony on Twitter around “certified” accounts. Paid for a few days, the “official” badge system was finally made free on Friday, November 11, in the face of the multiplication of impersonated accounts. “To fight against identity theft, we have added an ‘official’ logo on certain accounts”, tweeted the influential platform, bought on October 28 by Elon Musk for 44 billion dollars.

This gray-colored logo appeared under the profile of many advertisers and also, briefly, on the @Twitter account. It was introduced for the first time on the social network on Wednesday, but was quickly deleted by its new boss, the whimsical owner of Tesla and SpaceX. Elon Musk has been pushing since his arrival at the head of Twitter for the establishment of another authentication system, billed nearly 8 dollars per month. “Twitter Blue” allows anyone to obtain the blue tick, a guarantee of authenticity, previously reserved for organizations and individuals with a certain reputation.

But its introduction this week in the United States has been accompanied by a burgeoning of accounts posing as those of celebrities or big corporations. Fake LeBron James or Joe Biden tweeted in the name of the basketball star or the president of the United States. The pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly had to apologize on Thursday after a successful tweet from an account in its name, with the blue checkmark, which promised free insulin.

On Friday, it didn’t seem possible to subscribe to “Twitter Blue” on the site or via the mobile app. An internal memo, published by some US media, says the service has been suspended “to address spoofing issues.”

Since he bought Twitter, Elon Musk has laid off half of his 7,500 employees and launched several projects manu militari, including the overhaul of the paid subscription. “Please note that Twitter is going to be doing a lot of silly things in the coming months. We will keep what works and change what doesn’t,” the billionaire warned. Thursday evening, the American competition agency (FTC) sent him a rare warning. “We are following recent developments at Twitter with great concern. No CEO or company is above the law,” said one of its spokespersons.