The secret service and Fox News announced Tuesday that it will investigate the fraudulent hacking of Fox’s political Twitter account, @foxnewspolitics.
The Twitter account began posting false claims that President Obama was dead in the early morning of July 4th. The false reports were immediately taken down but not before causing a Twitter uproar in which thousands of followers retweeted the faux report.
“We will be requesting a detailed investigation from Twitter about how this occurred, and measures to prevent future unauthorized access into FoxNews.com accounts,” said Jeff Misenti, vice president and general manager of Fox News Digital.
George Ogilvie, a spokesman for the Secret Service, stated, “We are investigating the matter and will be conducting appropriate follow-up.” The White House declined to comment on the matter.
Twitter announced Monday afternoon that its servers had not been broken into; however, Twitter also claimed that the email account associated with the Fox News Politics twitter had been compromised. Fox News had not updated its twitter since June 30th, so the alleged hacking took place between then and July 4th. According to Yahoo News, the hacker group known as Script Kiddies allegedly gained access to Fox’s twitter account via email.
The New York Times reports that the editor for an online magazine at New York’s Stony Brook University, Think, announced he had exchanged electronic messages directly after the alleged hacking with a person who claimed to be with Script Kiddies. The editor, Adam Peck, claims that Script Kiddies had posted to its own Twitter account that it had hacked Fox News. The tweet also stated it wanted to speak with the Huffington Post and gave an instant-messaging screen name to be contacted. Peck, decided to try the screen name and subsequently engaged in conversation with an unidentified person claiming to be a part of the hackers group.
Peck, according to the Times, said he asked the group what their purpose was in hacking the news organization. The group, according to Peck, align themselves with the “antisecuirty movement,” or in other words, a movement to uncover information that corporations and governments tend to hide.
The Times reports that in one instant message exchange, the unidentified Script Kiddies member told Peck that there “will always be a group of people that need to stand up for everyone else and attempt to keep the governments in balance with its people.” The person claimed to be a former member of the better-known hacker group Anonymous.
The anonymous person also revealed to Peck that Fox News “was selected because we figured their security would be just as much of a joke as their reporting,” according to the Times.
Later, the unidentified person told Peck, according to the Times, that he could not confirm that Script Kiddies was behind the hacking.
The hacker tweeted six false reports regarding Obama’s death. One of the initial ones read, "@BarackObama has just passed," and, "The President is dead. A sad 4th of July indeed. President Barack Obama is dead."