Aaj English TV

Sunday, June 16, 2024  
09 Dhul-Hijjah 1445  

What is behind the ‘spring sale’ banner on Supreme Court’s website

The website was not hacked but displayed a bizarre popup

The Supreme Court of Pakistan website displayed a weird popup message on Tuesday for a brief period of time, sparking rumours.

Usually, when users log on to the website www.supremecourt.gov.pk they are greeted with a popup message in Urdu saying that only the most relevant people should enter the court premises to protect the judges from the coronavirus. The popup was added to the site during to Covid-19 lockdown, but it still exists there.

This pop up appears when you log on to the Supreme Court of Pakistan website
This pop up appears when you log on to the Supreme Court of Pakistan website

On Tuesday, however, another popup replaced the default one. A bold headline in red on the popup read: “Our Spring Sale has Started.”

The default popup was replaced with a sales banner
The default popup was replaced with a sales banner

Was the Supreme Court website hacked?

The simple answer is ‘No.’

This was not a hacker’s job. Probably the web developers responsible for maintaining the website could be blamed.

The Supreme Court website uses WordPress as its content management system like around 40% of websites in the world.

WordPress websites rely on several plugins for various features. The popup that appear on the website home page is delivered by a plugin named Popup Maker.

Apparently, the developers attempted to change the settings for the message and ended up displaying the plugin’s default text with ‘Our Spring Sale has Started’ in the heading. The smaller text under the heading testifies to this. It read: ‘You can see how this popup was set up in out step by step guide.’

The Urdu popup text was soon restored, but not before a number of people noticed the weird sales pitch and posted screenshots to social media platforms.

Some of them connected the words in the heading with the ongoing political situation of the country.

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