The hackers who found their way into CIA Director John Brennan’s personal email account didn’t use sophisticated coding skills. They just wheedled their way past his service providers’ customer service agents to take command of all his accounts.
It’s a striking reminder that even high-ranking members of the US government’s intelligence community are only as secure as their weakest safeguards. In Brennan’s case, those weak points were outside of the CIA. That hack followed the Department of Defense’s revelation in April that Russian hackers compromised its systems when security professionals clicked on email links containing malicious code. In both cases, people who are trained to know better fell victim to attacks that exploited their human weakness.
“They said, ‘Hey sir, it was Monday, it was early in the morning, I was coming in and blowing through my emails trying to get ready for my first meeting,'” Adm. Michael S. Rogers, director of the National Security Agency, said Monday at the WSJD Conference, explaining why employees clicked on the suspect links.
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Browsing Privacy: (c|net) – Hackers sweet-talked their way into the CIA director’s email account