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Indian PM Modi’s personal Twitter handle ‘briefly compromised,’ later secured

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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.

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Modi’s Twitter account was hacked with a message declaring his country had adopted bitcoin as legal tender and was distributing the cryptocurrency to citizens.
Modi is a prolific tweeter and is the world's most popular incumbent politician on the platform, with more than 73 million followers on his main account.

A swiftly deleted tweet from his main @narendramodi handle said the Indian government had officially bought 500 bitcoin and was “and distributing them to all residents of the country,” along with a scam link.

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



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.

Sunday’s hack ironically comes as India prepares to clamp down on a flourishing cryptocurrency trade with a new law likely to be introduced in parliament this month.

Details of the legislation remain unclear but the government has flagged a broad ban on private digital currencies.

The local crypto market has boomed since the Indian Supreme Court overturned a previous ban last year, with Bollywood actors and cricket stars fronting ad campaigns for local exchanges.

Modi himself said last month that cryptocurrencies could “spoil our youth” and the central bank has repeatedly warned they could pose “serious concerns on macroeconomic and financial stability.”

Read more: Modi says India will soon unveil $1.35 trln infrastructure plan

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