A Texas woman, down with flu and looking to bide time by indulging in some classic internet trolling, managed to dupe one of the most meticulously careful people in the world — WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
According to the Daily Beast, Twitter had briefly taken down Hannity’s account late on Friday night after it appeared that the Fox News host’s account had been hacked. His last tweet, cryptically reading “Form Submission 1649 | #Hannity,” sent his army of devout followers looking for a coded message or hints of foul play, but as is the case when a celebrity handle disappears, several duplicates sprung out in no time, some outright parody accounts but others pretending to belong to Hannity himself.
One of those accounts was created by the Texan technical writer, Dell Gilliam, who was down with flu and decided to create a fake Sean Hannity account. As Red State reports, Gilliam developed a substantial following within a period of a few hours with the help of Hannity fans who believed he was behind the handle. Her rabid frothing about justice and devotion to Donald Trump did not go amiss, with almost everyone believing that Hannity was behind Gilliam’s Twitter account.
The Texan woman continued with the pretense, till a time came when Julian Assange, whose WikiLeaks had been accused of hacking into DNC’s servers in 2016 allegedly at Kremlin’s orders, sent her a private message offering some bombshell new information.
“‘I can’t believe this is happening. I mean… I can. It’s crazy. Nothing can be put past people,’ Gilliam wrote to Assange after the latter had sent her a direct message promising compromising information on one of the Democratic senators.
‘I’m exhausted from the whole night. What about you, though? You doing ok?’
‘I’m happy as long as there is a fight!’ Assange replied.”
Gilliam told Assange that she (still posing as Hannity) was with him in his quest and scheduled a call for 9 a.m. Eastern time in the morning.
“You can send me messages on other channels,” Assange wrote his last message, before pointing out the identity of the subject of his new information.
“Have some news about Warner,” he said.
Assange was reportedly referring to Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, who, less than 48 hours later, said that the committee had received bombshell “end-of-the-year document dumps” that “opened a lot of new questions” about Trump and Russia.
Was this the information that Julian Assange wanted to give Sean Hannity? We will perhaps never know, but one thing is certain: neither Assange, who claims to be the objective keeper of world’s secrets, nor Sean Hannity, a journalist who regularly fans conspiracy theories and rails against the “deep state,” emerged looking credible after this rather hilarious episode.