TRAI publishes a million email addresses online by mistake, gets hacked in retaliation

Following the survey conducted by the TRAI which had over a million people send in their views on the topic of regulating OTT services, the regulatory body published each response on its website for public viewing. But it also messed things up as email addresses of every single person who sent in their responses were also displayed for everyone to see.

This caused a huge uprising as having over a million email IDs publically displayed means that cyber criminals and spammers will be able to take advantage of the information and target individuals. The TRAI failed to remove the addresses quickly and this led to it being hacked which pushed the website offline.

TRAI Decision

Internet activists Anonymous India claimed responsibility for the attack on Twitter and it used a DDoS method to bring down the website. Even now, the TRAI website is inaccessible and is sending back a ‘Connection refused’ error. It’s most likely that the email addresses will be removed soon before the site goes back online.

Also read: Flipkart ditches Airtel Zero following online furor, now joins support for net neutrality

Net neutrality has become a hot debate in India mainly since telecom operators are coming down hard on OTT services such as WhatsApp and Skype which offer free voice calling and messaging. This has caused cellular based calling and texting to drop putting operators into huge losses. Then again, such apps consume data and this should be offering them huge business from internet consumption.

TRAI accepted views from the public over regulating OTT services till April 24 and is also accepting counter comments up till May 8. If you’re amongst the million people who have voiced their opinion on the matter, be sure to have a strong spam filter installed on your email address.