Lowell Deeds

The latest on real estate recordings and new technology from the Middlesex North Registry of Deeds in Lowell

September 22, 2008

It Was Easy

by @ 1:58 pm. Filed under Current Events, Technology

The FBI is investigation a 20 year old college student for alledgely hacking into Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin’s Yahoo Mail Account. How is this possible? These people must be computer wizzards…Hardly. Most of us feel relatively safe about the security of our home email accounts, but should we? The alleged hacker, David Kernell used a pretty simple method to access Palin’s account. Almost all free email accounts like Yahoo and AOL allow users to “recover or reset” their password. And Kernell allegedly did exactly that to Palin’s account. Here is the scary part…Using readily accessible, personal information found on the Internet the hacker reset Palin’s email password. The new password…”popcorn” (get it Kernell/popcorn” allegely, of course). Later the hacker posted details of the break-in on the Web…This is from CNet: “When Yahoo prompted for Palin’s birthday, one poster said it took only 15 seconds on Wikipedia to answer that question. When prompted for ZIP Code, Wasilla, Ala., has only two ZIP Codes. As for Palin’s personal security question, “Where did you meet your spouse?” that did slow the process. The poster claimed it took several tries but eventually hit upon the correct answer: Wasilla High”. It is pretty discomforting to learn that our email accounts are so vulnerable especially considering that a national figures account was violated in minutes.

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