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Twitter Declines To Censor Tweets Reportedly Linking To Hacked Freedom Convoy Donor List

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Ailan Evans Associate Editor
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Twitter is allowing posts to remain on its platform containing the private information of Freedom Convoy donors reportedly obtained through hacking, according to a review of Twitter’s platform by the Daily Caller News Foundation.

Crowdfunding service GiveSendGo was reportedly hacked late Sunday and the personal information of donors to the Freedom Convoy, a group of truckers and individuals protesting Canada’s COVID-19 restrictions, was given to leak-hosting site Distributed Denial of Secrets, the organization said on its website. GiveSendGo has yet to publicly confirm the hack, and the company did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment early Monday.

Twitter’s “distribution of hacked materials” policy bans “the use of our services to directly distribute content obtained through hacking by the people or groups associated with a hack.” This includes “posting Tweets which include links to hacked content hosted on other websites” as well as “posting hacked content on Twitter (e.g., in the text of a Tweet, or in an image).”

A review of Twitter’s platform by the DCNF found several tweets appearing to contain screenshots of the hacked donor list or links to files containing what appeared to be the hacked materials. One of the tweets was from a prominent user with over 75,000 Twitter followers. (RELATED: ‘Hateful Conduct’: Twitter Locks Rep. Jim Banks Account For Calling Rachel Levine A Man)

Protestors against Covid-19 vaccine mandates block the roadway at the Ambassador Bridge border crossing in Windsor, Ontario, Canada, on February 9, 2022. - The protestors, who are in support of the Truckers Freedom Convoy in Ottawa, have blocked traffic in the Canada bound lanes of the bridge since Monday evening. Approximately $323 million worth of goods cross the Windsor-Detroit border each day at the Ambassador Bridge, making it North Americas busiest international border crossing. (Photo by Geoff Robins / AFP) (Photo by GEOFF ROBINS/AFP via Getty Images)

Protestors against Covid-19 vaccine mandates block the roadway at the Ambassador Bridge border crossing in Windsor, Ontario, Canada, on February 9, 2022.(Photo by GEOFF ROBINS/AFP via Getty Images)

The donor list contains personally identifying information including full names, zip codes, email handles and IP addresses, as well as donation messages, according to a review of the hacked materials by the DCNF.

Twitter previously censored a tweet from the New York Post in October 2020, one month before the 2020 presidential election, linking to a story allegedly containing emails from Hunter Biden’s laptop. The social media company cited its hacked materials policy as the reason for its actions.

“The images contained in the articles include personal and private information — like email addresses and phone numbers — which violate our rules,” Twitter Safety explained at the time.

The NYP was temporarily locked out of its Twitter account because of the story.

The social media company has previously defended not censoring certain content related to hacks, ranging from news articles citing information received directly from individuals who hacked GiveSendGo to information on donors to Kyle Rittenhouse’s legal defense fund.

Previous reports did not violate Twitter’s hacked materials policy because “this policy only addresses instances in which the materials themselves are being distributed — not discussions of or reporting about hacking which refer to but do not embed or link to the materials themselves,” a company spokesperson told the DCNF at the time.

Twitter did not immediately respond to questions from the DCNF about the tweets allegedly containing hacked materials. The company also did not respond when asked to comment.

Editor’s note: This story will be updated.

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