Some months back, a hacker managed to break into the T-Mobile networks, and after the chase was on for the hacker, even managed to hack into the T-Mobile phone account of the Secret Service agent that was trailing him. The T-Mobile network happens to be the phone network that I’m on, so I paid it a little attention, and like others didn’t really notice this last week when the hacker pled guilty as part of a sealed plea agreement. The hacker got into the T-Mobile database, collecting Social Security numbers, phone lists, and even the IMs and photos taken by folks on their cell phones. Before he was caught, the some of this information made it around in the backchannels of the internet, as well as the cell phone photos stolen right off of T-Mobile server space.
You would think that T-Mobile would have fixed the security of their servers, as soon as the information about the hacker and his capture became public knowledge. But I’m guessing this didn’t happen. Moreover, I’d wager that as part of the plea agreement, the hacker probably ended up having to divulge the exact method for hacking into the T-Mobile servers. This means that even though as late as this LAST WEEK, T-Mobile probably didn’t have their security fixed, and what’s more, they knew it.
What makes me suspect that T-Mobile’s databases are still insecure?
Paris Hilton’s Sidekick was hacked. Again. Not her personal phone, mind you. Merely everything her phone put onto the T-Mobile servers.
Someone, probably not the original hacker, mind you, hacked the T-Mobile servers again this week, and peeled off more of Paris Hilton’s photos, phone book, and what’s more, some of her saved notes. Several of the notes are dated February, 2005. The pages of information were then posted to a website online, and that location was then passed around like candy over the last couple of days. Hundreds of names and contact information was posted, apparently all of them accurate. A couple of dozen photos taken from Paris’ Sidekick were posted, too. I like this one because it has one of my old favorites, Burt Reynolds.
I suspect the posting of the Paris Hilton info was a way for the hacker community to show the flag of solidarity to the original hacker who got sentenced this week, and perhaps a way of hacking the T-Mobile servers one last time before the T-Mobile folks seal up their security breech forever.
What happened to all the phone numbers? Well, as of Saturday (Feb 19) evening, many of the phone numbers were still quite active. At least one TV/movie star actually answered her phone when the unwashed masses of the internet found Paris’ phone list.
Apparently nobody was aware of this most recent hack and subsequent internet publication until various folks started calling the numbers just to see if
A) the numbers were real
B) To find out if they’d let Prince Albert out of his can
(or the modern trollish equivilent – I’ll leave that to your imagination)
Is there anybody really interesting on Paris’ list? Sure. Lots. The only one I would probably have contacted is Stephen King. It didn’t give his phone number, but his email account for HIS phone. I guess I’m naturally inclined to think more about the writers than I am the actors and actresses, but that’s just me.