The Twitter account of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi was hacked on 1 September. The hacked account then posted a series of tweets asking his followers to donate cryptocurrency to a national relief fund. However, Twitter then successfully restored the account.
Meanwhile, Twitter confirmed the hack of Modi’s account. The company said it recognised the malicious activity and took steps to secure the compromised account.
“We are actively investigating the situation. At this time, we are not aware of additional accounts being impacted,” a Twitter spokeswoman said in a statement.
Who’s the perpetrator?
Modi’s Twitter account narendramodi_in links to his personal website and mobile app. Targeting the account was a group of hackers operating under the alias “John Wick”.
In a series of tweets, the messages posted on Modi’s Twitter account read, “I appeal to you all to donate generously to PM National Relief Fund for Covid-19. Now India begin with cryptocurrency. Kindly donate Bitcoin.”
High-profile accounts hijacked
The Modi incident comes following hacks of several Twitter accounts of prominent personalities in July.
Hackers had accessed Twitter’s internal systems to hijack some of the platform’s top voices, for example US presidential candidate Joe Biden, former US President Barack Obama, billionaire Elon Musk, and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates. The hackers also used these accounts to solicit digital currency.
The attackers targeted 130 Twitter accounts, ultimately tweeting from 45 of them, accessing the DM inbox of 36, and downloading the Twitter data of 7 accounts.
Modi’s Twitter followers
The official verified Twitter account of PM Modi, created in May 2011, has over 2.5 million followers and over 37,000 tweets.
Meanwhile, Modi’s personal Twitter account remained unaffected by this incident.
The personal account @narendramodi, created in January 2009, has over 61 million followers. The Indian leader uses Twitter extensively to reach out to people and share important information and updates.