Russian and Chinese hackers have embarrassed the British Government. Maybe time to change your password from ‘password’
August 11, 2023 9:43 pm(Updated 9:46 pm)
Our big story this weekend will have IT helpdesk workers shouting: “See! I told you!”
Chinese and Russian hackers broke into the UK Foreign Office after an employee downloaded malware hidden in an email, security sources tell i.
The attackers gained access to emails, internal messages, online meetings and correspondence from diplomats abroad. No classified information was obtained, officials insist.
But the episode is embarrassing for Britain – especially over “private” comms with global allies – and begs the question: how many more major breaches go unreported? This attack on the British state has been kept secret until today’s investigation by i reporter Richard Holmes.
Such attacks also have potential to jeopardise safety for Foreign Office staff here, as well as contractors in “some of the most dangerous and autocratic” countries – as the Tory chair of the Commons Foreign Affairs Committee warns.
Alicia Kearns says that “countries who stalk and intimidate our FCDO public servants now know who works on which sensitive environment… and the strategic thinking of the department that plays a major role in keeping us safe.”
Which of us doesn’t despair at the latest demand to change our password? We can expect much more of this.