Contractor blamed for taking down Trump's Twitter account

The person who briefly deactivated US President Donald Trump's Twitter account was not employed by the company, according to a report.

The New York Times, citing two people briefed on the matter, said the culprit - hailed as a hero by many on social media - was a contractor.

Twitter previously said it was a "customer support employee" on their last day that switched off Mr Trump's account. It was restored 11 minutes later.

"My Twitter account was taken down for 11 minutes by a rogue employee," the President later tweeted.

"I guess the word must finally be getting out-and having an impact."

The Times reports hundreds of employees and third-party contractors have access to Twitter's internal tools which can be used to deactivate accounts.

There have been calls for Mr Trump to be banned from the site, with critics saying his provoking of North Korean leader Kim Jung-un could result in nuclear war.

In August, former CIA agent Valerie Plame Wilson started a GoFundMe fundraising campaign, so she could buy Twitter and kick Mr Trump off it.

"Twitter has ignored growing calls to enforce their own community standards and delete Trump's account," Ms Wilson said.

So far, she has raised US$89,350 of the US$1 billion she says she needs.

Mr Trump has more than 41 million followers on Twitter, though about 40 percent of those aren't real people, according to