India PM Narendra Modi’s personal Twitter handle ‘briefly compromised’

Twitter handle compromised
FILE PHOTO: India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi attends a meeting during the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland, Britain, November 2, 2021. REUTERS/Phil Noble/Pool

(Reuters) – India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s personal Twitter handle was “very briefly compromised,” the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) said in a tweet early on Sunday.

The matter was escalated to Twitter and the Prime Minister’s personal Twitter handle @narendramodi was immediately secured, PMO India’s tweet said, adding any tweet shared during the brief period when the account was compromised must be ignored.

It was not immediately known how long the personal Twitter handle of Modi, which has over 73 million followers, was compromised.

A screenshot posted by several Twitter users showed a post on Modi’s account, which appears to have been hacked at the time, saying that bitcoin was being adopted as legal tender.

“India has officially adopted bitcoin as legal tender,” said the post, which also included a hyperlink. “The government has officially bought 500 BTC and is distributing them to all residents of the country.”

Screenshot of the compromised tweet

Twitter took the necessary steps to secure the compromised account as soon as it became aware of the activity, a Twitter spokesperson said in an emailed statement to Reuters, adding an investigation revealed no signs of any other impacted accounts at present.

A similar incident had occurred with the Twitter handle of Modi’s personal website @narendramodi_in in September 2020, with a series of tweets asking followers to donate to a relief fund through cryptocurrency.

(Reporting by Anirudh Saligrama in Bengaluru; Editing by Chris Reese)

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