The second day in a row the Congress party was at the receiving end of a brutal hacking assault on its official Twitter handles. First Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi and today the Twitter account of Indian National Congress. The abusive nature of the tweets on both handles has been well publicised on social media. It would be improper to reproduce the tweets, which at best seem to be the work of an insensitive mind; someone who thinks using words like “retarded” “autism” and “gay” to attack someone is very cool.
That, however, is not the point here. One of the tweets, in the clutter of offensive language, caught our attention. The hacker threatened that he/she is going to release a bunch of Congress emails. “We have enough info to drop your party down to shreds,” the tweet read.
We do not know if there is any truth in this claim. However, if true, it seems like we are looking at a full blown cyber war in the field of politics. For all those making fun of the hack, let’s be clear on this. Hacking is nothing but a form of cyber crime. And no one wants to be on the side of the criminals.
There have been instances, where hacking has been seen as a way of rebellion and making a point against the establishment. The Anonymous group of hackers or hacktivists use cyber attacks to this very end. And they are damn powerful and popular because of their activities. Anonymous hacktivists were quick to take down US President-elect Donald Trump’s website for an hour after he said that he would ban Muslims from entering the United States of America.
However, there was a point these guys were making: “Think before you speak”. The hacking drama that unfolded in front of us was a far cry from what the Anonymous group does. It’s a shame that the juvenile hackers picked up their tag line: “we are legion”. Because what we saw since yesterday nothing but high school fun. It made no point. Clearly, it wasn’t a work of a hacktivist.
The hacking row has now become another reason for political blame game. Congress Spokesperson Priyanka Chaturvedi has already put the blame on “BJP hacks”. The party is also planning to raise it in Parliament, which is quite stupid. This hackathon is only going to add to the political mud-slinging. But the bigger concern here is the state of our cyber security and the impunity with which it can be compromised by any high school drop-out today.