A teen hacker was able to hack into the private email account of CIA Director John Brennan. The hacker, who described himself to The New York Post as an American high school student who is not Muslim, said he was compelled to do it because he wants to support Palestine. He also came clean about hacking into the Comcast account of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson.
In an interview with WIRED, the teen hacker said he was able to speak with Brennan. “He was like ‘What do you want? We said ‘2 trillion dollars hahaa, just joking,’” the hacker told WIRED of his conversation with the CIA director.
The hacker said Brennan seemed ready to give what they want. “How much do you really want?” Brennan asked him. “We just want Palestine to be free and for you to stop killing innocent people,” was the hacker’s reply.
The teen hacker said he did the hack with two other people. First, they did a reverse lookup of Brennan’s mobile phone number. Discovering that he was subscribed to Verizon, one of them pretended to be a Verizon technician and called the company. They simply pretended that they have a customer waiting on the line but that their tools were down and could not immediately attend to the “customer.” The company naturally asks for employee verification code. They gave a fake code and the next minute they had all the needed information they used for the hacking. Such information included Brennan’s Verizon account number, his four-digit PIN, his backup mobile number and his AOL email address, and finally, the last four digits on his bank card.
“[A]fter getting that info, we called AOL and said we were locked out of our AOL account. They asked security questions like the last 4 on [the bank] card and we got that from Verizon so we told them that and they reset the password,” the hacker told WIRED.
According to the teen, they hacked into Brennan’s email on Oct. 12 and read pertinent emails the director sent, including work-related correspondence he sent to the White House. The teen said Brennan re-set his password but they were able to penetrate it again.
The government is now investigating the matter and based on initial findings there are no classified information that was compromised, USA Today reported. Secret Service spokeswoman, Nicole Mainor, told USA Today that the agency is still in the process of review. CIA spokesman Dean Boyd on the other hand said the agency has referred the matter to the appropriate authorities. DHS, meanwhile, refused to comment, saying the secretary’s personal security is something the department is not authorized to issue statements about.