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ATB Financial facing off with Twitter troll

Disgruntled, but unidentified, employee causing the institution some online grief

Jim Kerr is Venture Publishing's Associate Director of Digital Initiatives. Get in touch with him at

May 13, 2014

by Jim Kerr

What do you do when imitation goes too far?

That’s a quandary facing ATB Financial at the moment as the institution attempts to deal with threats from an imitation Twitter account. The account, @ATB_CCC, has been active since April 1st and has gone from tweeting complaints about the customers who call ATB’s Care Centre to much more offensive tweets about the company itself.

Things took a much darker turn on the weekend though, when the account threatened to start sending out racist tweets unless it received “an answer on why @atbfinancial thinks its ok to treat the CCC employees like trash (sic).” ATB spokesman Barry Strader told the Calgary Herald they think the account has “crossed the line in a number of ways,” adding that “no person or organization should be subject to those kinds of threats, and ATB is no different.”

Unfortunately for ATB, there doesn’t appear to be much they can do for now. Twitter’s guidelines state that these types of accounts are generally acceptable, as long as it’s clear that the account is a parody.

What should you do if you find yourself in this position? Report the account to Twitter, especially if the tweets become overly abusive, offensive or threatening.

So far, whoever is behind @ATB_CCC has not followed through on Sunday’s threats.

UPDATE: The @ATB_CCC account is no longer active.

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