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Wednesday, 08 September 2010 12:55

Facebook hacked to shame presidential hopeful

Written by Nick Farell
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Egyptian democracy in action
An Egyptian presidential hopeful has had his daughter's Facebook page hacked in a fairly deliberate attempt to squash his chances. Mohamed ElBaradei has blamed opponents for hacking his daughter’s Facebook page after images of her drinking alcohol and wearing a bikini during Ramadan sparked outrage amongst religions conservatives.

A Facebook group with the title “ElBaradei’s family secrets - How shameless are they” had reportedly copied or received dozens of pictures from Laila Elbaradei’s wedding and published the information during the holy month of Ramadan. While the photos were true, the other things that the hackers did to her page indicated that it was all part of a smear.

Under the heading of politics, the text says “very liberal” and under religion it states “agnostic". There are also references to drug dealers from the popular American television series “The Wire”.

There is no evidence to support the case that the government was behind the smear. However it might be a coincidence that the government has launched a new online security unit reportedly designed to monitor the online presence of political rivals of President Hosni Mubarak and his son, Gamal. Gamal is likely to be presidential candidate himself so has no interest in smearing his rival.

Nick Farell

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