The New York Post was hacked on Thursday morning as a slew of disturbing posts and headlines came online shortly after 9 am.
The first to alarm Twitter users was a tweet calling for the “assassination” of New York progressive Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
The tweet was quickly deleted but was live long enough to be cached by Google. A web address and headline both read: “We must assassinate AOC for America.”
Disclose.tv reported shortly afterward that both the Twitter account and main website were apparently hacked. The report included screenshots.
Similar faked tweets that went live on Thursday included other politicians on both sides of the aisle either as the source or target of the threats.
They include disturbing posts threatening the lives of Joe Biden and Hunter Biden; accusing Texas Governor Greg Abbott of advocating lethal force at the border; and a faked threat against Rep Josh Gottheimer and family by Republican opponent Frank Pallotta.
There were also two false and defamatory quotes purported to be from New York Republican gubernatorial candidate Lee Zeldin about his opponent Governor Kathy Hochul and New York Mayor Eric Adams which included threats of sexual violence and racist epithets.
“The New York Post has long fostered an ugly, toxic conversation on their front pages and social accounts, but these posts are more disgusting and vile than usual,” Governor Hochul’s spokesperson Jerrel Harvey said, according to the New York Daily News.
Mr. Harvey said that an investigation must find out “how this reprehensible content was made public,” adding that “while the Post has made its preferences very clear in the New York Governor’s race, there is no room for this violent, sexist rhetoric in our politics. We demand answers”.
All of the posts have been deleted.
A later tweet that was posted from all of the Post’s social channels reads: “The New York Post has been hacked. We are currently investigating the cause.”
It is believed that existing stories were doctored with fake headlines, republished with new web addresses, and automatically tweeted out.
For example, the fake headline about Rep Ocasio-Cortez linked to a real column by Ben Shapiro about the New York lawmaker being critical of President Biden’s poll numbers, but with the doctored headline.