Social networking platform Parler has gained immense popularity since its launch over two years ago. The online service has a huge following of Donald Trump supporters, right-wing extremists, and conservative politicians. Parler has been trending on Twitter after a screenshot of the app database surfaced online suggesting that the platform was hacked.
Was Parler hacked?
Soon after the database screenshot started to emerge online, people called it a false claim against the platform. John Matze, founder at Parler, stated in a post that they do not use WordPress products and that their databases are hidden behind several security layers and referred to the claims as an irresponsible rumour. He further added that they do not store any personal data, and the user verification data is deleted on completion.
However, if you look up the archives for the webpage circulated online, it indicates that the website has used WordPress products in the past. Data scientist Kevin Abosch took to his Twitter handle to reveal that he had seen numerous compromised Parler profiles which include direct messages of some popular personalities.
I’ve seen what looks like legit proof of 5000 compromised Parler accounts including DM’s of some well-known figures. Hackers decompiled the app, zero day exploit etc.. I wish I could unsee what I’ve seen.
— Kevin Abosch (@kevinabosch) November 24, 2020
What is Parler?
Parler is a popular American microblogging and social networking platform which was released in August 2018. The online service is promoted as a non-biased free speech platform for all people, where users can share their views and opinions on a wide variety of subjects.
The website advertises it as a place where people can speak freely and express themselves openly, without any fear of getting de-platformed for their views. The website description also states that the online platform is user and privacy-focused and that it offers its users all the tools that are required to curate the Parler experience.
The platform is available on both Android and iOS devices, and it also has a web version. If you are an Android user, you can download the app here, whereas iOS users can download the app by clicking on this link. The web version of Parler can be accessed by clicking on this link. Once you’re on the app or the web version, just click on the ‘Create new account’ button to get started.
Image credits: Parler