Sunday, December 4, 2022

New York Post website hacked, racist, sexist headlines target politicians

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The New York Post’s website and Twitter account were hacked Thursday, as racist and sexually explicit headlines about Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and President Joe Biden were published.

The posts were removed shortly thereafter on, and the News Corp-owned New York tabloid newspaper’s website was operating as usual by mid-morning. The Post has 2.8 million followers on Twitter.

A New York Post spokesperson confirmed in an email to CNBC that the posts resulted from a hack.

“We’ve taken down the vile and reprehensible content posted by the hackers and continue to investigate the cause,” the spokesperson said, providing no further comment on the matter.

The headlines appeared with photos but links that didn’t lead to articles. In addition to violent and explicit headlines targeting Biden and his son, Hunter, and Ocasio-Cortez, there was also a racist headline regarding New York Mayor Eric Adams and a post targeting unionized teachers.

Representatives for the president, Ocasio-Cortez and Adams didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. Content management system WordPress, which enables publishing to the New York Post site, didn’t immediately respond to comment, either.

New York gubernatorial candidate Lee Zeldin and incumbent Kathy Hochul were also mentioned in explicit headlines as part of the hack.

“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,” a Hochul representative said Thursday. “The New York Post needs to immediately explain how this reprehensible content was made public. 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.”

A representative for Zeldin didn’t immediately respond to comment.

This is the second hack on a U.S. media publication in recent weeks. In late September, Fast Company shut down its website for roughly a week after hackers gained access to its site and sent out “obscene and racist” push notifications to Apple News users.

At the time, Fast Company said on Twitter its content management system was hacked and impacted its Apple News alerts. The company, which also uses WordPress, suspended its website immediately. It later said it retained a global incident response and cybersecurity firm to investigate the matter.

–CNBC’s Stefan Sykes and Jack Stebbins contributed to this article.



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