Hacker of Yingluck's Twitter account 'identified'

Authorities have identified the man suspected of using his cellphone to hack into the Twitter account of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra.

"I know who and where you are and it's just a matter of time before police arrest you," Information and Communications Technology Minister Anudith Nakornthap said yesterday.

The hacker had used a mobile phone application to access Yingluck's account and another app to hide his location, Anudith said.

Starting at 10.20am, eight messages were posted to Twitter@PouYingluck. The highlights are the following.

"This country is a business we run for our cronies and not for the Thai people. We serve our supporters and not our opponents."

"Do the poor have a chance? We are exploiting the poor hoping for their votes to support us to plunder the country."

"Is it time for our country to change for the better and not project an image to aid businesses, vested interests and relatives?"

"Education is most important to the country. But why is there a policy for free distribution of tablets instead of a curriculum or wage hike for teachers?"

"You can't protect even your Twitter account. How can you safeguard the country? Think about it my brothers and sisters."

They were followed at 10.50am by a self-confession.

"Please be informed that a hacker has accessed the account and none of the messages is being posted by PM Yingluck."

Pheu Thai deputy spokesman Sunisa Lerpakawat said the prime minister was aware of the unauthorised access.

"The use of computers should be constructive, not destructive," she said.

The hijacking of the PM's account had tarnished the country's reputation, she said.

Pheu Thai spokesman Prompong Nopparit called on authorities to unmask the perpetrator and bring him to justice.

Yingluck also came under criticism from Democrat spokesman Chavanont Intarakolmalyasut for mispronouncing ya faek (vetiver grass) as ya praek (pesty grass).

"Even when the prime minister was reading a script, she read it wrong," he said.

She should apologise for her slip-up during her weekly radio address, he said, adding that he did not think it would be funny if 15.7 million Pheu Thai supporters decided to grow weeds instead of vetiver grass for flood prevention.

Democrat MP Watchara Phetthong said Yingluck had made too many gaffes lately. Her misleading remarks about the Navy's submarine procurement request came just last week, followed by the inability to distinguish between the grass to prevent soil erosion and the weed, he said.

Democrat MP Thepthai Senpong said the government should allocate equal airtime for opposition leader Abhisit Vejjajiva to respond to Yingluck's radio show.

When the Democrats were in power, the Pheu Thai Party was allowed to host a television programme but it could not name its opposition leader, he said.