18 September 2008

Why Public Email Services Shouldn't Be Used for Sensitive Communication

I really, really don't like commenting on political topics, but this one has an important email security message involved in it:

McCain camp seeks investigation over reported e-mail hack

Sarah Palin Yahoo account 2008 -- Wikileaks

In case you haven't heard, vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin's Yahoo email account was hacked (apparently by the notorious internet group "Anonymous" -- reports state that it may have been done for the lulz). Yeah -- her Yahoo email account... that she was using for sensitive government business.

Why is this important? Two reasons that you probably won't hear about in the news:
1) Why was she using a private email account for business and governmental matters -- emails that should've been sent using a secure system such as Lotus Notes, for example? Was it to get away with record-keeping requirements?

2) Why would someone in so sensitive a position use something so easily hackable? Seriously, Yahoo couldn't give less of a shit if your email account is hacked. Ask someone who's had it happen to them before.
There's a lot of important questions to discuss here -- perhaps they'll come up in a security meeting you'll have in the future. They'd certainly make good topics.

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