Digital Transformation

National Lottery Twitter campaign hijacked with offensive messages

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By Taruka Srivastav | Reporter

August 15, 2017 | 3 min read

A social media campaign from The National Lottery encouraging people to upload their names to receive a personalised message from Team GB athletes has turned sour after being hijacked with offensive and malicious messages.

National lottery campaign

National Lottery apologises after campaign is hijacked

It's almost identical to the disaster snacks' brand Walkers faced with its personalised 'Wave' campaign just a few months ago, where it inadvertently featured Rolf Harris, Stalin, serial killer Fred West and convicted criminal Josef Fritzlin Twitter ads.

The National Lottery's campaign, called #Represent, aimed to cement the bond between fans and athletes by sending personalised tweets from Olympians such as Greg Rutherford and Nicola Adams to their supporters who used the hashtag #IAmTeamGB.

Hijackers instead posted messages about the Hillsborough disaster, Madeline McCann and Bradley Lowery, who recently passed away, as well as uploading the names of criminals such as Jimmy Saville and Joesf Fritzl.

Hijacked posts
Hijacked posts

The National Lottery has now regained the control and posted an apology on Twitter.

"We are aware that some people are maliciously targeting our British Athletics Twitter campaign with offensive and abhorrent content," it said.

"We are dealing with this as quickly as possible and are hugely sorry for any offence caused by this malicious act."

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