Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has been under fire for using personal email accounts to circumvent “open government” and deny information records requests not associated with her offical email account with the state.Â Computer hackers, of which are a resourceful lot, have broken into the Governor’s Yahoo email account.
Here’s an account of the security breach from Network World, a leading IT industry trade magazine.
“The activist group called “anonymous,” best known for its jousts with the Church of Scientology, has apparently hacked into the private Yahoo e-mail account of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the Republican candidate for vice president. Contents of that account, including two sample e-mails, an index of messages and Palin family photos, have been posted by the whistleblower site Wikileaks, which contends that they constitute evidence that Palin has improperly used her private e-mail to shield government business from public scrutiny, an issue that had already been raised by others.
There’s no way to tell at a glance whether this material is authentic or a hoax, but the organizations involved are well known. Obviously, the method by which the information was obtained and posted will be hugely controversial. (And inclusion of the pictures seems gratuitous, if not mean.)
However, the e-mail index from Palin’s account does appear to indicate that she has been using it for both private and official business, with one entry addressed to California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and another to Palin’s chief of staff, Michael Nizich, to cite only two obvious examples.
As for the sample e-mails, rather than bolstering the contention that Palin uses private e-mail to avoid possible public scrutiny of official business, at first blush they actually seem indicative of her dutifully separating Alaska business from Alaska and national politics. Both samples are overtly political in nature, which, based on my admittedly limited understanding of the law in this area, make them inappropriate when using government resources.”
From the Wikileak’s site:
Circa midnight Tuesday the 16th of September (EST) Wikileaks’ sources loosely affiliated with the activist group ‘anonymous’ gained access to U.S. Republican Party Vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s Yahoo email account email@example.com. Governor Palin has come under criticism for using private email accounts to avoid government transparency mechanisms. The zip archive made available by Wikileaks contains screen shots of Palin’s inbox, example emails, address book and two family photos. The list of correspondence, together with the account name, appears to re-enforce the criticism.
Now Black Hat hacking is not legal but it raises an interesting ethical dilemma: isÂ conducting illegal activity to highlight illegal activity ethical, moral or just wrong?
Want to find out if the email is legit?Â Pretty simple if you want to do some jail time. Just send some sort of threatening message.Â I’m not saying you should do this at all, but a knock onÂ your door from men in black suits and sunglasses will tell you its her address.