You are not logged in. LOG IN NOW >

White House Officials Targeted in Gmail Invasion

BY Nancy Scola | Friday, June 3 2011

At a hearing last month, House oversight committee chair Rep. Darrell Issa pressed White House Chief Information Officer Brook Colangelo on whether White House staff might be bringing personal iPads with them to work.

Chinese hackers might have been hoping that White House and other U.S. officials were using their Gmail accounts to do serious work-related stuff, report the Wall Street Journal's Devlin Barrett and Siobhan Gorman:

People who work at the White House were among those targeted by the China-based hackers who broke into Google Inc.'s Gmail accounts, according to one U.S. official.

The hackers likely were hoping the officials were conducting administration business on their private emails, according to lawmakers and security experts.

The government has acknowledged senior administration officials were targeted in the "phishing'' attacks on hundreds of users of the email service. White House officials declined to discuss who was targeted.

The Obama administration reiterated Thursday that no official messages were compromised. But lawmakers and outside computer-security experts said recent White House history suggests administration officials sometimes use personal email to talk business, despite rules against doing so.

As they points out, the incident serves to amplify warnings from House oversight chair Darrell Issa about government workers using personal, non-secured equipment and accounts for work purposes. Perhaps if government IT wasn't so "horrible," to quote one high-ranking U.S. government figure...