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PM Modi’s Twitter account linked to hacked and restored personal site News from India

NEW DELHI: The global Twitter celebrity hack hit India when an account linked to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s personal website crashed with cybercriminals seeking cryptocurrency donations for Covid-19 relief. While the account was soon restored, it is understood that India’s main nodal cybersecurity agency CERT-In is now investigating the matter and has sought explanations on Twitter, sources told TOI.
For its part, Twitter said it is investigating the matter and assured that “it is not aware that additional accounts are being affected.”
Interestingly, the government also sent a notice on Twitter in mid-July after the global attack when the IT ministry tried to find out if there were any violations in India at the time as well. In the present incident, the verified Twitter account of Prime Minister Modi’s personal website @narendramodi_in was hacked in the early hours of Thursday while intruders were searching for funds. “I ask everyone to donate generously to the PM National Relief Fund for Covid-19. Now India starts with cryptocurrency. Please donate bitcoins to (bitcoin wallet address), ”the hackers tweeted from the verified identifier around 3.15am. The account, which has more than 2.5 million followers, has so far posted 37,000 tweets since it was created in May 2011. However, the account was restored within an hour and the malicious tweets were removed.
Modi works through two most verified Twitter identifiers: @PMOIndia (38.4 million followers) and @narendramodi (61.8 million followers).
“We are aware of this activity and have taken steps to protect the compromised account. We are actively investigating the situation, ”said a Twitter spokesperson, adding that it is unclear whether other accounts have also been compromised. “At this time, we are not aware of any other accounts being affected.”
The company claims that, according to its investigation, the hack “was not due to a compromise of Twitter’s systems or services,” ruling out any possible link to the July celebrity hacking incidents. “There is no hint or evidence of any correlation between the compromise of this account and the incident that took place in July,” Twitter said.
In the July incidents, cyber attackers had hacked into the Twitter accounts of famous Western personalities such as former US President Barack Obama, Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, as well as companies such as Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, the co-founder of Microsoft. Bill Gates and the CEO of Tesla. Elon Musk. It was allegedly linked to a Bitcoin scam, and the incident also prompted CERT-In to intervene as it sought explanations from the company about any possible attack in India.
In an email, the hackers claimed that they are based in Korea and that they had hacked into the prime minister’s website account to “clear his name” from a previous data breach incident. The hackers, whom TOI contacted, did not specify North or South Korea.
The hackers had identified themselves as “John Wick” and posted another tweet. “Yes, this account was hacked by John Wick ([email protected]). We have not hacked Paytm Mall,” they said in a tweet, posted around 3.16am. John Wick is a Hollywood vigilante action thriller franchise starring actor Keanu Reeves in the title role.
The hackers, whose name was previously linked to a data breach in the Paytm Mall app, said they wanted to “send a message” that they had not hacked into the Paytm Mall database. “There is no other intention to hack this account . Recently, the fake news of our name saying paytm mall hacked for us, so we sent an email to all the news publishers in India, it’s not us, (and) no one answered, so we decided to post something (sic) ” they wrote.
Although the hackers did not respond to questions about how they carried out the attack, they said they “exploited a bug on the PM’s website” to gain access to the verified Twitter handle of their website. “That was fun, we know that nobody pays from India,” they replied when asked if they had received Bitcoins in their wallet.

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