Internet vandals over the weekend hacked the Twitter account of a company that helped upload thousands of Sarah Palin's emails to the Internet.
Judging by the fake tweets sent out, it appears as though the hack was politically motivated and pulled off by someone less than pleased by all of the media attention being given to the trove of Palin emails that was released by Alaska state officials on Friday.
Among the fake posts to Crivella West’s Twitter account that were captured in screen grabs by liberal blog PoliticusUSA:*
- Emails: Gov. Palin a Hard-Working Public Servant
- Email Witch-Hunt Backfires
- Weiner’s America or Palin’s America—That Is the 2012 Choice
Here's the background on Crivella West from msnbc.com, which worked with the company to create its online Palin email archive:
Crivella West, a Pittsburgh company that analyzes documents in some of the largest legal cases and works with both political parties, had first offered its services for free to the state of Alaska, after officials there said in 2008 they were overwhelmed by records requests and would require payment of $15 million by any citizen or journalist seeking the records. After the state did not reply to the company's offer, msnbc.com and the company agreed to put online a free public archive of the records once the state released them.
The company’s founder and CEO, Art Crivella, had been openly critical of Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell’s decision to release the documents in print form as opposed to electronically.
"We’re dealing with it here like we were in 1950, with all these banker’s boxes of paper,” he told the Juneau Empire on Friday. “You have to go out of your way to do this. It would be like me paying my taxes in pennies—I know it’s legal tender, but I have to go out of my way to do it."
Parnell and other state officials said that they lacked the technological capability to digitally redact the passages deemed privileged and therefore had no other option than to release the documents in print form. All told, the nearly 25,000 pages of records reportedly weighed 275 pounds.
MSNBC stressed that its online database had not been jeopardized by the Twitter vandals.
Crivella, meanwhile, offered this parting shot to the hackers:
"It appears that in this case 'hacking' means sending out spam tweets pretending to be us,” he told MSNBC. “I think real hackers might be offended."
Correction: This post originally misidentified the blog PoliticusUSA.*