Ed Balls has revealed that he was the victim of a scam on Twitter when he first signed up to use the social media platform.
The Labour former chancellor, who has also appeared on Strictly Come Dancing, said he was tricked by an account that was offering him the chance to get more followers.
He told the Might Delete Later podcast: “I’m getting the train up to Yorkshire from London on a Friday, back to the constituency, and I pressed this button.
“I think somebody said to me ‘Would you like more followers?’
“So I say yes, thinking ‘Isn’t that what we’re supposed to want?’
“And it was one of those automatic things where (it said) ‘Subscribe to get more followers’.”
He added that it was a “disaster” as posts that he had not written himself about wanting more followers started appearing on his timeline.
The episode put him off using the platform for six months, he said.
Balls said there never used to be any training for politicians on how to use social media and they would instead have to figure it out themselves by making mistakes or copying others who were using it successfully.
The scam is not the only Twitter mishap that Balls has been involved with.
In 2011 he became an internet sensation after tweeting his own name, and the day is marked by fans online each year.