In brief

  • A Twitter account used by the Indian Prime Minister to source donations was hacked this morning.
  • Attackers asked followers to send crypto to an Ethereum address.
  • The attack comes after in line of a series of high-profile Twitter hacks in July.

Hackers targeted a Twitter account belonging to Indian prime minister Narendra Modi and used it for a national relief fund early on Thursday morning, according to news outlet AFP.

The since-deleted tweet asked for charitable donations using a cryptocurrency, adding an Ethereum address in the comments.

While the targeted Twitter account is, in reality, used to promote legitimate relief contributions and donations, the social media site confirmed the account was targeted by hackers instead of the relief fund introducing crypto payments as a mode of donation.

"We're aware of this activity and have taken steps to secure the compromised account. We are actively investigating the situation,” a Twitter spokesperson said in a statement.

The firm added it had no information on whether any other accounts were compromised. At press time, no similar reports exist either. Twitter also added it had not found any link between the Modi hack and the July breach, the report said.

The attack comes just months after a widespread attack took control of several high-profile Twitter accounts to promote cryptocurrency-related scams involving Bitcoin and Ethereum.

The Twitter accounts of a range of celebrities, such as social influencer Kim Kardashian, tech entrepreneur Elon Musk, and former US vice president Joe Biden, were hacked at the time.

The platform swiftly took down the affected accounts, but not before tweets were sent out by accounts totalling 346 million followers and over $120,000 in Bitcoin siphoned to the hacker’s address. US authorities allege that it was carried out by a 17-year-old teen in Florida, who purportedly gained access to the site’s admin keys.

Meanwhile, crypto scams remain a menace on social media. But while Twitter has stated it’s taking steps to prevent such instances, video-sharing giant Youtube continues to field such crypto ads. It has even been sued by Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak in August for failing to control such scams.