Four days after being hacked, the Bhartiya Janata Party’s (www.bjp.org) website remains down, with a message that says that the site is under maintenance and “will be back online shortly”. The BJP hasn’t made a statement on the hack as yet.
The site was hacked on the morning of Tuesday, March 5, and defaced. Screenshots of the defaced site were circulating on Twitter:
BJP Website Hack Dnt Miss This Video pic.twitter.com/6aabFmfjuB
— กٱᛕɦٱɭ รคٱกٱ ನಿಖಿಲ್ ٱ نکھل سینی (@nikhil_inc) March 5, 2019
A day after the site was hacked, the site displayed a message saying that it is under maintenance and would be back online shortly. As of last evening, March 7, the website was still under maintenance:
3 days after being hacked, the official website of @BJP4India is still in “maintenance”. Before wiping everything, I can bet the hackers stole the database with all the BJP members and donors details.
If the hackers are seeing this message, I would love to discuss with you. https://t.co/H3fHdKVCng
— Elliot Alderson (@fs0c131y) March 7, 2019
Previous hacks and security issues
About two weeks ago, the personal website of Gujarat BJP vice-president IK Jadeja was hacked and defaced with a “Pakistan Zindabad” message. In April 2018, multiple union government websites, including of the Defence Ministry, crashed simultaneously. The MoD’s website was defaced by suspected Chinese hackers; the National Informatics Centre denied that the website was hacked, and that it was “some technical issue.”
The website of the Ministry of Home Affairs was taken down as a security measure. Websites of the Ministry of Law and Justice, the Ministry of Labour & Employment and the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports also showed error messages.
BJP tweet document could be edited
Last month, AltNews founder Pratik Sinha was able to get hold of a Google document of the BJP IT Cell loaded with pre-written tweets for social media accounts of BJP workers and leaders.
Sinha edited the document and changed key words in the tweets. For instance, he changed the phrase “PM Modi took care of the marginalised section” to “PM Modi took care of the richest sections.” The edited tweets were sent out through the official handles of a Union Minister, and the BJP Assam unit, among others.
How do you get a Union Minister to tweet what you want? Well, you go and edit the trending document made by BJP IT cell, and then you control what they tweet. Thread.
Here’s the video of this morning when their trending document got automagically updated :-)
— Pratik Sinha (@free_thinker) February 13, 2019