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Palin Email Hacker Found

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the do-not-pass-go dept.

Privacy 767

mortonda writes to tell us that the person responsible for breaching Sarah Palin's private email account has been found. We discussed the breach last Wednesday, shortly before the hacker, a University of Tennessee-Knoxville student, posted a message detailing his methods. Wired has a story examining the potential legal consequences for the hacker.

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This Just In (5, Insightful)

TheSpoom (715771) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094011)

Cracker is an idiot. Ever hear of Tor [wikipedia.org] ? Or better yet, post the information on something like Freenet [wikipedia.org] and just advertise it on Freenet somehow and let other people get the information out to the main web.

Of course, the fact that he posted his nick on /b/ when it's usually forced-anon anyway means he basically confessed. Not to mention that he said which proxy service he used -- note to criminals: if you want to get away with something, don't brag about how you did it!

Re:This Just In (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094087)

The cracker is a /b/tard, don't think that you need to go into it any deeper than that.

I'm happy that some of that information came out. If it came down to it, I'd put in 10bux for his legal defense.

Re:This Just In (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094091)

Unless someone just compromised that forum account and framed him.

Re:This Just In (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094153)

Unless someone just compromised that forum account and framed him.

Are you a jew?

Re:This Just In (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094223)

Are you a jew?

He's about as Jewish as he is a fucking monkey.

Re:This Just In (5, Informative)

Sephr (1356341) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094699)

Forum account? 4chan doesn't have 'accounts' to be compromised. And tripcodes don't give any user information, just verifiers the username. The only identifiable info on 4chan would be the IP.

Re:This Just In (4, Insightful)

Elektroschock (659467) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094107)

Let's say it like this: He or she is no hacker or cracker. It is just a usual internet user who did not obtain great skill.

Lessons:

* government users should not take yahoo (who ever came to that idea?)

* Anonymous communication matters

* Activities of governments should be transparent.

* It may help a person to become vice president who appears to be a nightmare and encourage anti-hacking regulations. Fortunately S. Palin has close affiliations with witch hunters. [youtube.com]

Re:This Just In (5, Insightful)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094157)

The whole reason Palin is using Yahoo instead of government sponsored email is that any email sent through those channels is archived for a Very Long Time as a matter of public record. Wondering what the clerk at the DMV is REALLY emailing about? Put in a freedom of information act request and it's all yours.
 
By Palin using yahoo, it's not closely watched and she can conduct official business off the record. It's very poor form to do so and is the real story here.

Re:This Just In (5, Insightful)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094201)

I have yet to see anyone ask Cheney or Palin if they feel they are above the law. Their actions seem to indicate they do.

I have trouble understanding why we put people with such obvious contempt for the law in positions that are in charge of it.

Re:This Just In (5, Insightful)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094289)

I have trouble understanding why we put people with such obvious contempt for the law in positions that are in charge of it.
 
Brilliant marketing, and the general public's desire to believe what they're told in hopes that it will come true. If the general public were half as smart as we give them credit for the world would have never seen Napoleian, Cesar (well actually the Romans solved that problem on their own), Castro, Hugo Chavez and more. But as the protestants like to point out, people are like sheep and will head in whatever direction the man who speaks softly but carries a big stick says.

Re:This Just In (2, Funny)

MagdJTK (1275470) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094689)

If the general public were half as smart as we give them credit for the world would have never seen Napoleian, Cesar (well actually the Romans solved that problem on their own), Castro, Hugo Chavez and more.

The others are fair enough, but what's dog food got to do with it?

Re:This Just In (0, Troll)

Elektroschock (659467) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094483)

Palin is protected by her understatement. She uses it for bullying. You cannot attack her because that would make her a victim and she makes you appear rude.

I mean look at her statements. I mean for instance when she talks about her son beeing deployed in Iraq. Isn't it frightening to see an aspiring political leader buy into peasants propaganda? She wants to get into a leadership position and talks herd. That is frigthening.

Am I arogant and elitist to talk like this. Sure, I am. You see how it works and results in adverse selection.

She talks trash. Some speak out but she can surf on her underdog routine. Attack her and it strengthens her underdog routine [youtube.com] .

Re:This Just In (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094351)

By Palin using yahoo, it's not closely watched and she can conduct official business off the record. It's very poor form to do so and is the real story here.

So, she should have used the telephone to do her off the record business?

Or are telephones taped now for governors? If they aren't, then why is email so special?

Not trolling, I'm serious here.

Re:This Just In (4, Informative)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094465)

Email is a lot easier to record? There's always been a divide between the written and spoken word, from business deals (oral contract is only binding up to $500 in Florida), to courtroom hearings (hearsay, your word vs. mine, etc). You can request copies of government memos; email is electronic mail; it stands to reason that any official written communication should be kept. Lots of meetings are held behind closed doors because there's no written record for public consumption.
 
There's lots of other cases where emails are available for public consumption; for instance emails back to 1996 for the Seattle metro service are all available for review. On the flip side you have a matter of public record, historical records for data mining, and more. Imagine how boring history would have been if we didn't have access to Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, Abraham Lincoln's personal letters today?
 
Governors aren't required to record their telephone conversations, although I know Nixon was a fan of doing so - which is partially what got him in trouble in the first place. I'm not sure what the outcome was in court about whether those are considered personal or not. I know in most states both parties have to be aware of the conversation being recorded. In Virginia(?) only one party is required to know that the conversation is being recorded.

Re:This Just In (2, Informative)

ZWithaPGGB (608529) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094393)

She wasn't using the account for gov business, at least not based on what was posted on wikileaks, or according to the purported "Hacker". It was personal e-mail, in some cases about how she and others were being treated personally in the political arena, but not anything related to official government business.

As Officer Bar Brady says "Nothin to see here, move along now".

Why can't a government employee use Yahoo? (3, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094399)

By Palin using yahoo, it's not closely watched and she can conduct official business off the record.

Or you know, she could in fact SEND PERSONAL EMAIL. Are you saying that no government employee should be able to have a personal email account? Then I guess you're OK with AT&T recording phone conversations without a warrant, because if government employees should not be able to have any private life why should you?

The kid even said there were NO incriminating emails in the account (see: Wired story). So get off your high horse and allow for humans to be humans and have something of a life, even if it's one of your dreaded Repuglithuggnaughtterizies.

Re:Why can't a government employee use Yahoo? (2, Interesting)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094511)

I haven't read her email, but what I've heard was she was corresponding with heir aides about how to handle PR on several negative issues. It's a blurry line but I suppose that could be considered personal. Probably best to have made a phone call instead.

Re:This Just In (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094403)

By Palin using yahoo, it's not closely watched and she can conduct official business off the record. It's very poor form to do so and is the real story here.

Except that the DEMOCRAT hacker in question has already admitted he didn't find any evidence whatsoever that Palin used her account for official business.

Re:This Just In (2, Insightful)

Jaktar (975138) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094433)

And yet she believes judgment day is not far off...

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/us_elections/article4720440.ece [timesonline.co.uk]

So why does she bother to "hide" using a non government email address when she believes the world will end within her lifetime? Makes you wonder which side of her mouth tells the truth doesn't it?

Re:This Just In (2, Interesting)

John Jorsett (171560) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094439)

By Palin using yahoo, it's not closely watched and she can conduct official business off the record. It's very poor form to do so and is the real story here.

OR, she could be obeying a governmental policy that says government accounts are not to be used for personal or campaign purposes. Did any of sample emails that were posted fall into the category of official business?

Re:This Just In (1, Informative)

teknopurge (199509) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094541)

But she didn't conduct any official business with the yahoo account! All that was in it were family pictures and emails to her friends. IMO, she did the correct thing by not using a govt.-paid for email account for personal communications.

Also, by the fact that you falsely stated she conducted "official business" with the yahoo account, I cannot help but think you have some type of bias, as why else would you blatantly falsify information???

Re:This Just In (3, Interesting)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094655)

Oh I definitely lean to the left and feel Palin would be grossly unqualified should the qualified (but very old) McCain were to have health issues requiring him to leave office. I missed the part on slashdot where I have to register my political bias! This isn't a newspaper I'm entitled to my opinion on the facts available to me. Also keep reading additional posts to see what else I have to say and why I came to that conclusion (i.e. recieving and responding to emails from Aides of politicalrelevance is activity I would consider official).
 
Which way do you lean? Left or right? Do you feel it in any way biases your thoughts/comments?

Re:This Just In (2, Insightful)

ccguy (1116865) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094609)

The whole reason Palin is using Yahoo instead of government sponsored email is that any email sent through those channels is archived for a Very Long Time as a matter of public record

Not that I like her, but everyone's entitled to having personal accounts which should be respected.

If she used her .gov account for everything some people would be complaining about her usage of public resources to email her family.

Now, about what was found in the yahoo account: Obviously it would inadmissible in court, but it's very useful to her enemies anyway. Which I find disgusting.

Re:This Just In (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094641)

Spend much time on that theory?

The reason she used a Yahoo! email account is because it is illegal to conduct political activity using State resources.

The failure is strong with you.

Re:This Just In (3, Insightful)

jadavis (473492) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094685)

The whole reason Palin is using Yahoo instead of government sponsored email...

Do you have any evidence of this, other than a few isolated emails?

People use a variety of communication systems. They talk on the phone, talk in person, email from various accounts, etc.

Most people make some attempt to organize this: a work phone number, a work email address, etc., but there is almost always some spillover. People socialize with other people they work with, and so there is bound to be some mixing among all of these types of communication. The only time that doesn't happen is when the consequences are huge, such as top secret information or something.

So what is your evidence that she did so to avoid record keeping and hide the information from FOIA requests?

It's very poor form to do so and is the real story here.

No, the real story here is our tolerance for people who harass, intimidate, violate the privacy of, or otherwise punish people who run for public office (or maybe just the people we don't like). We're never going to get good people to run for office if they are punished for doing so.

Re:This Just In (2, Funny)

ThinkTwicePostOnce (1001392) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094457)

What do you know, another politician's teenager! - a State Rep's son From Tennessee!

At least he didn't get some girl pregnant!

Re:This Just In (1)

Cyberllama (113628) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094597)

I disagree. It doesn't matter if it was, in retrospect, obvious. He found a pretty blatant flaw in the system -- in that the password reset function was woefully inadequate for figures who live a very public life since all the questions pertain to the customers private life. This flaw isn't really any less simple to implement than a buffer overflow might be, it just requires far less technical knowledge to do so.

Regardless, he found a flaw in a computer system, recognized it, exploited it, and gained access. Sounds like hacking (or cracking depending on how malicious you regard his activities to have been). Just because that flaw, in retrospect, was utterly stupid and obvious, doesn't really change that. Douglas Adams once wrote something to the effect that it takes a true genius to invent something which everyone recognizes at once as having been completely obvious but no one had ever made before.

Re:This Just In (4, Insightful)

L0rdJedi (65690) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094683)

Let's say it like this: He or she is no hacker or cracker. It is just a usual internet user who did not obtain great skill.

Lessons:

* government users should not take yahoo (who ever came to that idea?)

* Anonymous communication matters

* Activities of governments should be transparent.

* It may help a person to become vice president who appears to be a nightmare and encourage anti-hacking regulations. Fortunately S. Palin has close affiliations with witch hunters. [youtube.com]

Oh please. Here's the real lessons learned:

1. Don't make your security question anything that can be found online or don't discuss anything about it online (hers was where she and her husband met).

2. Don't enter your real birthdate anywhere online. Again, what places really need this for an online account except "social networking" sites? Even then, anyone you know is probably going to know when your birthday is anyway.

3. Don't use your real zip code.

All of the above would have completely prevented this "hack". It's not difficult to make up a birth date and use that instead. Same goes for a zip code (12345 anyone?).

Re:This Just In (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094595)

Cracker is an idiot.

Well, he is a DEMOCRAT.

But I guess that would be redundant.

"Hacker" (3, Insightful)

Verteiron (224042) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094019)

So "hacking" now includes password guessing?

Re:"Hacker" (1)

yincrash (854885) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094053)

Sure. Why not?

Re:"Hacker" (1)

liquidpele (663430) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094061)

For anyone who does not read slashdot, it always has.

Re:"Hacker" (5, Insightful)

Helios1182 (629010) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094105)

It is usually the easiest way for a lot of systems; that, or just ask the user and they will tell you.

Re:"Hacker" (0, Redundant)

kidde_valind (1060754) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094119)

Mod parent up. This is actually a case of cracking that can not in any way be said to be hacking. The guy cracked the password. No hacking involved at all.

Re:"Hacker" (5, Informative)

swabeui (1291044) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094125)

If you have followed the story, he didn't guess the password. He used publicly available information to fool Yahoo's password recovery tool to give it up.

As simple as it may sound, it is a bit more involved than 'guessing' a password.

Re:"Hacker" (4, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094601)

If you have followed the story, he didn't guess the password. He used publicly available information to fool Yahoo's password recovery tool to give it up.

And somehow that turned into headlines that say:
Palin Email Hacker Impersonated Her, Stole Password

http://www.google.com/search?q=palin+impersonated [google.com]
Even the Associated Press went down that road.

Re:"Hacker" (3, Insightful)

Free the Cowards (1280296) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094619)

I'd say it's less involved, not more. Answering a question which is a matter of public record is much easier than trying to guess someone's password.

I've always thought that those "security questions" were a giant security hole. This just goes to show that it's true.

Re:"Hacker" (5, Interesting)

Ritchie70 (860516) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094161)

Not even password guessing. He apparently took public information about her and reset the password.

If anyone wondered if demanding date of birth, home town, etc. was a BAD way of determining identity, this should resolve that for them.

Re:"Hacker" (2, Insightful)

colfer (619105) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094365)

Yahoo lets you answer the backup questions and then reset the password to one of your choice? I didn't know it was that insecure. Normally a system would email you a reset link, but I guess Yahoo users might not have another email address. Sounds like Y should give you the option of disabling this cracking feature. Either you have a it send the reset link to a backup email or to a registered phone number for SMS text. How does Gmail do it?

Re:"Hacker" (1)

Hal_Porter (817932) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094575)

Even on services that don't you can always one of the questions that allow a string and set it to some long string of capital and lower case letters, numbers and punctuation chars.

E.g place of birth

N3ArAlph@C3ntur1!

Re:"Hacker" (1)

Tatarize (682683) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094579)

Apparently the question was where did she meet her spouse. And everybody already knows they eloped out of highschool about seven months before their first kid was born. So "Wasilla high" reset the password.

I'm glad my passwords are like "na;nl;awiwoacf" and other crazy crap like that (no I don't use that password). But also those damned reset questions are a massive security hole.

Re:"Hacker" (4, Insightful)

Shihar (153932) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094487)

First, it wasn't password guessing. He exploited Yahoo's password recovery system to get it to reset her password. He basically used public information to pose as Palin and convince Yahoo's password recovery system that he needed the password reset. Exploiting such a weakness in the system is, by any standards, "hacking".

Second, after he got in, he than went through all of her e-mail. Breaking into a system, even if it had been a password guess, and then going through its contents is again, by any standard standard, hacking.

I loath Palin, but this guy is going to get what he has coming. Even shitty and crazy humans who think the world is a few thousand years old and much to my horror might be president one day, get legal protection. It isn't like the police can go, "Yeah, he hacked in, but Palin kinda sucks, so I think we will let this one slide".

Shame on you Slashdot (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094057)

There's no evidence that we know of that this kid was indeed the hacker other than a post on /b/. And accepting a post on /b/ to be reliable information is like... trusting /.'s front page.

Re:Shame on you Slashdot (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094331)

When you put untrusted evidence on untrusted slashdot, the two cancel each other out, making it the truth.

Re:Shame on you Slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094499)

Not even that. The accusation is based on the handle "Rubico", which is not extraordinarily unique. Hell, I use a handle which is a misspelling of an obscure Latin term, and I've seen it being used by one or two other people.

Equal punishment? (3, Interesting)

tooyoung (853621) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094093)

I would hope that the punishment would be the same as would be handed out to someone that hacked my hotmail count.

Not that, you know, I have a hotmail account...

Re:Equal punishment? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094167)

Which nigger modded this troll?

Re:Equal punishment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094523)

So you mean no punishment at all ?

Hacking these email system using secret question is SO popular there are websites that send the phishing email FOR YOU.

Re:Equal punishment? (4, Insightful)

Hal_Porter (817932) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094617)

Yeah, just like the punishment to the Watergate burglars was the same as that meted out to regular burglars.

Fact is bugging your political opponents is Serious Business legally.

Son of DEMOCRAT pol (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094109)

Gee, why'd that get left out?

Anyone really think Slashdot would have left out "Republican" had the child of a Republican politician hacked Barack Obama's personal email?

Re:Son of DEMOCRAT pol (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094137)

Of course they wouldn't leave it out. They'd probably invite Jon Katz to come back and write about Yahoogate!

Re:Son of DEMOCRAT pol (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094241)

Personally it doesn't matter to me what the guy's political affiliations are, but I have to agree with you. If the situation were reversed, the summary would have mentioned (with 100% certainty) the political affiliation.

But I have come to expect this from the left-leaning websites. In fact, I basically just ignore any stories mentioning ($LEFT/$RIGHT) on websites that obviously have a ($RIGHT/$LEFT) slant. Honestly, how can you take a story about McCain/Palin on Slashdot seriously? I guess it's not quite as bad as Digg, but it is still bad.

On the bright side, we only have to deal with it for another 2 months. After that, either Obama will have won and we'll have a gush-fest or McCain will have won and it will be the same as the last 8 years. Either way, the rabidness of the election season will eventually drop back down to normal levels.

just tell me (0, Troll)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094353)

wtf are you doing on a 'left leaning' website anyway ?

from what i came to understood by reading you americans' posts on slashdot, american conservatives tend to label anything that is pro-freedom or free speech as 'left'.

if freedom hurts so much, get the fuck out of slashdot.

Re:just tell me (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094447)

I just took a massive shit. Extremely smelly, damn, like something crawled up my ass and died. Holy fuck, it must have been those donuts I ate yesterday. But I digress. The shit started nice and hard, but soon devolved into a watery, liquid-based shit. The entire bowl (and seat for that matter) is covered in liquid feces.

I didn't flush coz I thought you might be hungry :)

Re:just tell me (0, Offtopic)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094563)

i wouldnt want to disrupt your daily dinner routine. please.

What if... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094471)

I want everyone here to think about how they would respond if the report were about Barack Obama's e-mail account instead. Just shut the fuck up.

it WOULDNT (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094553)

because barack obama is not someone that tries to evade public oversight by using private emails for government work.

so shut yer trap.

Re:it WOULDNT (1, Insightful)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094693)

So, you're saying that, because Obama doesn't use private email for government work, you'd definitely be OK with someone "hacking" Obama's private email and posting it to the world?

Welp (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094113)

I guess not even 7 proxies could save you.

hehe (1)

nawcom (941663) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094193)

From what I saw from one of the screenshots, the person was using one of the web based proxies, I forget which one. Too bad he wasn't thinking too well when he wanted to remain anonymous. When you visit /b/, you kill as much brain cells as 12 ounces of vodka when you drink it in under 10 minutes. I've checked /b/ out just for the hell of it. Their interaction with females consist of "tits or gtfo". I'm not surprised.

Either way, it's too bad the other email address didn't get checked; then perhaps he could of gotten the interesting emails.

password reminder (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094203)

If you can't disable the "recover password question", at least type a lot of random characters as the answer.

Public Records (0, Troll)

NorseWarrior (975051) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094207)

OK, so the student did a stupid and illegal thing. Got it. Now, let's ask ourselves this: Why is Sarah Palin using a private account when she is Governor? She has no respect for the sunshine laws that are supposed to make government transparent. She's not the first; the White House staff also used their acces to the RNC email system and other private providers to go around the legalites of compliance with archiving regulations. If you're going to hunt the student down and make him pay for the crime, then I just hope some smart defense attorney uses discovery to fully explore what she was sending and what she was reading in her "private" correspondence.

Public Records -- The Catch-22 (0)

maz2331 (1104901) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094313)

From the looks of the screenshots, it was used for personal and political communications.

This HAS to be done to avoid a charge of "misuse of state resources" - ie: doing "political activity" via public networks, which is illegal. Congressmen have gone to prison for doing just that.

Anyone in public office is required to use private systems for personal and political activity.

Indeed, here in Pittsburgh the Feds are prosecuting Cyril Wecht for using county phone/fax machines for his private side business.

What I've seen here is that Palin properly followed the demarcation line between "official business" which is done via official state systems, and "private communications" which may NOT be done via state systems.

It seems that the haters making all the noise here don't understand the difference between official and personal messages. Or maybe they are disappointed that she actually seems to have followed the law, and didn't give them the "gotcha" moment they crave.

As for the hacker, hopefully the Feds will give him a nice long stay in a real PMITA prison with a guy named Bubba.

Re:Public Records -- The Catch-22 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094445)

As for the hacker, hopefully the Feds will give him a nice long stay in a real PMITA prison with a guy named Bubba.

So original.

Re:Public Records -- The Catch-22 (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094573)

You're posting here, using racist codespeak (Bubba?), advocating for the physical and/or sexual abuse of someone who hacked a Yahoo account?

Fucking fascist.
- The Big Lebowski

Re:Public Records (4, Informative)

Hungus (585181) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094341)

Why is Sarah Palin using a private account when she is Governor?

Because there are laws in place that say what you can and cannot do with government services and equipment. What you do not seem to get is she was abiding by these laws. Thats why she has 2 (or more) email accounts. The hacker ought to be prosecuted, he even said he did it with malicious intent

I really wanted to get something incriminating which I was sure there would be

but guess what? he found squat and diddly.

I read though the emails... ALL OF THEM... before I posted, and what I concluded was anticlimactic, there was nothing there, nothing incriminating, nothing that would derail her campaign as I had hoped, all I saw was personal stuff, some clerical stuff from when she was governor.... And pictures of her family

You can't conduct state buisness. (4, Insightful)

Tatarize (682683) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094613)

A number of those emails seem to be very state-businessy looking at who they are all from. And apparently they were using those accounts in order to have the ability to quickly delete any email they wanted rather than be subject to maintaining them for FOIA requests.

Re:Public Records (1)

s7uar7 (746699) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094635)

Because there are laws in place that say what you can and cannot do with government services and equipment. What you do not seem to get is she was abiding by these laws. Thats why she has 2 (or more) email accounts. The hacker ought to be prosecuted, he even said he did it with malicious intent

You have sarah.palin@yahoo.com, spalin@yahoo.com or moosehunters4ever@yahoo.com for personal emails. What you don't have is gov.palin; anything sent or received in her capacity as governor should go via her .gov address.

Re:Public Records (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094695)

I really wanted to get something incriminating which I was sure there would be

but guess what? he found squat and diddly.

Diddly squat... in that e-mail account.
She had another yahoo account that was not cracked, was under investigation by the Feds and has since been deleted.
Nobody really knows wtf is going on.
Or at least nobody who knows can/will publicly say anything.

One way to get more information is with a public records request to Alaska for all e-mails to/from gov.palin@yahoo.com & gov.sarah@yahoo.com

Re:Public Records (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094721)

It's sad that her personal correspondence, pictures and information was made public like this, but I'm glad it turned out she's OK. From what I've learned about her, she seems like a nice person.

I assume the kid is screwed (2, Funny)

smchris (464899) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094209)

"It would be a stretch to charge a felony [in the Palin case], but if they want to be hard on [the hacker], they could do that,"

Let's see. Hacking into the Republican VP candidate's email under the Bush regime. Gosh, what are the odds they will find a judge who will bite on the felony rap? I mean, really, if any words comes to mind when I think of Neocons it must be "forgiving" and "merciful".

And Links To Others... (3, Interesting)

maz2331 (1104901) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094355)

They might give the kid a partial immunity deal if he gives up someone in office or the Obama campaign.

It's been reported that his father is an ultra-liberal Democrat in state office - who does have some serious connections with the Obama campaign.

IF (big "if") there is any link to any campaign, then we have almost the exact same thing as Watergate going on here. This would then be the first "-gate" scandal since the original that actually deserves the name.

Can anyone say "what did they know and when did they know it?"

Re:And Links To Others... (1)

nstlgc (945418) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094461)

The guy was a /b/tard. You can keep your Republican propaganda for yourself and kindly shut the fuck up.

Re:I assume the kid is screwed (1)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094561)

Felony charge would be terrible PR for republicans. If it were any other time but election year they could string him up by his thumbs. Most likely charges won't be filed... if they are it'll be after the winning party is sworn into office, and then plead down to a misdemeanor. You have to be awful poor or kill someone to get a felony charge brought up to you and have it stick... especially with a father heavily invested in state politics.

Important (2, Insightful)

jav1231 (539129) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094219)

The important thing is that prosecution comes. Regardless of the politics involved, if there's no charges then any online email service is essentially useless for private communication. Not to mention the law on such matters doesn't "matter."

Re:Important (4, Insightful)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094309)

If he's a student, I hope Palin opts not to press charges, or pushes for a slap-on-the-wrist. Some kind of punishment that will sting, but won't be career ending.

Regardless of the politics involved, if there's no charges then any online email service is essentially useless for private communication.

No, they are *already* useless for private communication. Email is sent in plaintext across networks, and regardless of prosecution, the attack vector used here is a pretty easy one. If your email is unencrypted, or you're using easily looked-up information as passwords or recovery questions, then it's not private. period.

It would almost be better not to prosecute at all, if it has the effect of making people aware of, and take precautions against, the complete lack of privacy already extant.

Re:Important (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094513)

No, they are *already* useless for private communication. Email is sent in plaintext across networks,

Not mine. There is a standard for using strong encryption when sending email, it's called STARTTLS and it has been in the SMTP standard for more than a decade.

Most email software & MTAs support it. Even (shudder) Outlook 97 supports it.

Re:Important (1)

Curtman (556920) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094377)

if there's no charges then any online email service is essentially useless for private communication.

It's obviously nowhere near as private as you think it is.

Re:Important (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094719)

In my school, students are taught that email in general is no more private than a postcard. Now you want to teach them that they can get a felony conviction for reading a postcard? That does not compute.

Okay, if your brain didn't explode, tell me why there were no charges against Republican Congressman/child molester Mark Foley. Short answer is that the House protected his email from investigators who then gave up for lack of evidence. If anything, I want more emails out there so we can put a few of these elected officials/criminals away, rather than uselessly putting away college students who are not a significant threat to law and order.

The real criminals here are Sarah Palin and Mark Foley. But the sensationalist media (e.g., frothing Bill Reilly) want to put some college student away for a long time.

Was thsi guy really a grea hacker? (1)

SupremoMan (912191) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094287)

I read in some article that even thou he used a proxy, he posted screenshots which listed the address of the proxy... which would be retarded, unless it was a fake address that was intentionally posted and was in fact different.

As if (1)

v(*_*)vvvv (233078) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094301)

...anyone would even care if this were anyone else's email account.

Seriously, how many yahoo accounts get hacked a day? And WHO cares? Seriously, does ANY DA care about those crimes and looks to prosecute? Yahoo definitely doesn't care. And what are the victims suppose to do? Call 911? The FBI?

DAs are given the authority to use the law to prosecute who they want. It should be that the law tells which DA to prosecute which crime, and not the other way around as it is now.

I can't wait until someone hacks her paypal account.

Democrats (-1, Flamebait)

codepunk (167897) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094305)

"The father is a Democratic state representative in Tennessee"

Is this the behavior we should expect from this party?

Re:Democrats (2, Insightful)

Adrian Lopez (2615) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094379)

I'm glad to see Wikileaks is back up, along with the Palin article. For a while I thought it was being censored by the thugs in charge.

What a shame the media is focusing on the hacking angle rather than on Palin's inappropriate use of personal communications channels for government business.

Last 8 years have ripped you off all your (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094397)

constitutional rights and freedoms.

is this the behaviour we should expect from republican party ?

oh wait - yes it is !! because THEY DID IT.

and thats coming to you from a turk living in turkey. go figure the grimness of your situation.

Re:Democrats (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094419)

As opposed to how the Republicans, operating under tacit -- if not explicit -- Presidental approval, broke into the Watergate Hotel?

Say what you will about underhanded Democratic tactics, but there is *no* way you can tell me the Republicans play nice. Period.

Re:Democrats (1)

wampus (1932) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094435)

No, but its pretty predictable for teenagers and /b/tards...

Hacked? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094347)

Does guessing a poorly chosen password really count as hacking?

Re:Hacked? (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094525)

hey retard, he didn't guess the password, he had it reset.

details, details. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094369)

Everyone seems to have left out the detail about the guy's father being a Democratic state representative from Tennessee. Were the parties reversed, would that have been the headline?

He's toast. (1)

AgentFade2Black (968245) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094391)

The Secret Service will see to that.
Or maybe the CIA.

Answering a question is not hacking. (0)

apparently (756613) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094411)

Sweet fucking christ.

Re:Answering a question is not hacking. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094531)

Answering the right questions in order to provide authentication IS hacking.

Oh boy! (1)

Kylere (846597) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094467)

Regardless of who the account belonged to, I support them frying this guy. We are a nation of laws not of men. I support freedom of speech, I support net neutrality, and I support internet freedom. I do not support some loserboi playing with peoples email accounts.

step to step guide how not to get caught (4, Funny)

sam_paris (919837) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094481)

1) Buy cheap pc using cash (OLPC or similar)
2) Find open wifi network, choose a place far from where you live
3) Connect to TOR and do your dirty deeds
4) Clean finger prints from PC and trash it, far from where you live

OR

1) Goto internet cafe, ensure cafe has no security cameras
2) Pay with cash
3) Connect to TOR and do your dirty deeds
4) Clean finger prints from computer

Profit?

Let's see how quickly (0, Flamebait)

toby (759) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094505)

...the brownshirts abuse "terrorism" laws against this individual.

The real criminal here is Palin. How can Bush cronies repeatedly get away with violating public records and accountability measures? It's disgusting.

Hacker (2, Insightful)

Phroggy (441) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094519)

Using this label gives this guy far too much credit.

A Guesser, not a Cracker. Certainly not a Hacker (1)

Anonymous Pundit (161899) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094547)

Two problems with the headline Palin Email Hacker Found:
  1. This news came out days ago. Slashdot is now as timely as the dead-tree old media?
  2. As the subject line says, the guessing involved to gain access to this email account required no technical skill so shouldn't be called hacking or cracking.

A better headline would have been Legal punishment options for Palin email thief.

Don't worry, he'll be fine! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25094559)

He can just register as a Republican-- then he can safely ignore any subpoena, tell the media that the investigation is politically motivated, and get off scot-free!

The fundamentally flawed "Password Recovery"... (2, Insightful)

Doug52392 (1094585) | more than 5 years ago | (#25094723)

First off, I don't think this guy was really from "Anonymous" or anyone like that - I think he was just someone who wanted attention.

Quoting from TFA:

As detailed in the postings, the Palin hack didn't require any real skill. Instead, the hacker simply reset Palin's password using her birthdate, ZIP code and information about where she met her spouse -- the security question on her Yahoo account, which was answered (Wasilla High) by a simple Google search.

This proves how fundamentally flawed the "Password Recovery" system, used by many websites, really is. Even if this had happened ot an average Joe guy, all one would have to do to get his security question answer is simply know the guy and his past. The questions are SO GENERIC that anyone could easily guess or find out the answer!

Like the common "Mother's maiden name". All you need to do is Google the target's full name! If the target or anyone remotely related to them ever made a family tree, you'll find the tree - including the target's mother's maiden name.

So if it's THAT EASY for an average guy, doing this for a politician whose ENTIRE LIFE STORY has been told countless times on TV, online, on the news, and on the radio, is as simple as one Google search.

I hope everyone running for President right now learns this, and, when someone becomes America's next President, has the sense to change this issue (cough)Obama(cough).

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