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IT Ministry dodges Tharoor panel's questions on PM's Twitter hacking, Pegasus

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IT Ministry dodges Tharoor panels questions on PMs Twitter hacking, Pegasus
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New Delhi: The Parliamentary committee led by Shashi Tharoor on Monday asked top officials of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) about Prime Minister Narendra Modi's official Twitter handle being hacked and the Pegasus issue.

The officials appeared clueless before the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology about the hacking and gave what is already available in the public domain, sources informed.

Regarding the employment of the Pegasus spyware, officials responded that the matter is subjudice. Sources said that the officials said they had nothing to say and ducked the question, PTI reported.

But the officials testified before the committee on safeguarding citizens' rights and preventing misuse of social/online news media platforms. They emphasised women security in the digital space.

PM Modi's Twitter account was briefly hacked on Sunday, and a tweet was posted that India has officially adopted bitcoin as legal tender. The PM's office (PMO) said later that the account was immediately secured after Twitter was informed. Twitter has stated that it is in touch with PMO regarding the issue.

This was not the first time Modi's Twitter account got hacked. In September last year, Modi's personal website's Twitter handle was hacked, and tweets promoting bitcoin were posted from @narendramodi_in. Twitter handles of famous personalities including Barack Obama and Bill gates were also targeted before by hackers and posted tweets promoting Bitcoins.

In October, the Supreme Court of India had directed a panel of experts to investigate whether the government used military-grade private Israeli Pegasus spyware as a means to put opposition leaders, activists, tycoons, judges and journalists under surveillance.

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