An unnamed tipster claims he has hacked a Web-based e-mail and online storage accounts belonging to GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney.
The anonymous hacker reached out to Gawker yesterday afternoon and supplied them with what are purported to be pilfered login credentials. In an e-mail, the hacker claimed to have noted the address, email@example.com, after reading through e-mail messages posted by the Wall Street Journal in a report on Tuesday and then guessed the answer to Romney’s password reset security question to gain access to the account.
A Romney campaign spokesperson, Ryan Williams indicated that the campaign is working with law enforcement to investigate the incident. “The proper authorities are investigating this crime and we will have no further comment on it,” Williams told Threatpost.
Gawker, which has been the recipient of other high profile leaks and the victim of attacks, said it sought comment from the Romney campaign, but claims they did not access the emails. In the meantime, those responsible for the hack have yet to produce evidence that they had access to the contents of the Hotmail account.
Gawker did confirm that Hotmail users can use “What is your favorite pet?” as a password reset question.
Calls and e-mail sent to the FBI regarding an investigation of the incident were not returned.
Romney’s use of personal e-mail accounts to conduct State business and his administration’s efforts to erase or remove any e-mails from his term as governor from State-owned computers have been sources of controversy for the presumptive Republican party nominee. As the Wall Street Journal report indicates, Romney frequently used his firstname.lastname@example.org address to communicate with aides within his administration about policy matters. It is unclear whether those Hotmail messages are subject to freedom of information requests