Follow Us

We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message

Mitt Romney email and Dropbox accounts reportedly hacked

Campaign team remains evasive

Article comments

The Hotmail and Dropbox accounts of US Presidential candidate Mitt Romney appear to have been hacked in an echo of a similar break-in suffered by vice-presidential hopeful Sarah Palin in 2008.

So far there is no confirmation of the hack, first reported by a news site Gawker, but a statement made by Romney’s team offered credence to the possibility.

"The proper authorities are investigating this crime and we will have no further comment on it," read an otherwise evasive statement made by Romney campaign communications director, Gail Gitcho.

Gawker said it had been contacted by an unnamed third-party who claimed to have broken into an old Hotmail account supposedly not used after 2006 but now found to be active.

The hacker claimed to have bypassed security by correctly answering the security reset question ‘what is your favourite pet?’, which also turned out to be the password for Romney’s Dropbox account.

The email address accessed by the attacker came to his or her attention after the address was published in a story by the Wall Street Journal.

“I have nothing to do with Anonymous and have never done something like this before,” said the hacker.

What the hacker found in the accounts is not known and has not been leaked, unlike the contents of Sarah Palin’s account, the contents of which ended up on Wikileaks during her failed vice presidential campaign in 2008.

David Kernell, the 20 year-old son of Memphis Democratic state representative, Mike Kernell was later sent to a half-way house jail for the hack, losing his appeal against a charge of evidence deletion earlier this year.

Assuming the ‘hack’ actually happened and the email box contained sensitive content, the attack is still only mildly embarrassing as long as this remains unpublished. Romney was apparently still using an email address said to have been de-activated years ago and made the elementary mistake of using an easily-guessed password for Dropbox.

However, the attack underlines the potential susceptibility of some webmail services to relatively simple password reset attacks where two-factor authentication is not in use.


More from Techworld

More relevant IT news


Send to a friend

Email this article to a friend or colleague:

PLEASE NOTE: Your name is used only to let the recipient know who sent the story, and in case of transmission error. Both your name and the recipient's name and address will not be used for any other purpose.

Techworld White Papers

Choose – and Choose Wisely – the Right MSP for Your SMB

End users need a technology partner that provides transparency, enables productivity, delivers...

Download Whitepaper

10 Effective Habits of Indispensable IT Departments

It’s no secret that responsibilities are growing while budgets continue to shrink. Download this...

Download Whitepaper

Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Information Archiving

Enterprise information archiving is contributing to organisational needs for e-discovery and...

Download Whitepaper

Advancing the state of virtualised backups

Dell Software’s vRanger is a veteran of the virtualisation specific backup market. It was the...

Download Whitepaper

Techworld UK - Technology - Business

Innovation, productivity, agility and profit

Watch this on demand webinar which explores IT innovation, managed print services and business agility.

Techworld Mobile Site

Access Techworld's content on the move

Get the latest news, product reviews and downloads on your mobile device with Techworld's mobile site.

Find out more...

From Wow to How : Making mobile and cloud work for you

On demand Biztech Briefing - Learn how to effectively deliver mobile work styles and cloud services together.

Watch now...

Site Map

* *