Gawker Media contacted by FBI in probe of AT&T security breach of iPad email addresses

“Gawker Media said Friday on its Valleywag blog that it has been contacted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and was told to hold on to relevant documents related to a possible security breach of AT&T Inc.’s website that exposed the email addresses of some owners of Apple Inc. iPad devices,” Spencer E. Ante and Ben Worthen report for The Wall Street Journal. “‘We can confirm that Gawker Media was contacted by the FBI earlier today and issued a formal preservation notice,’ Valleywag said in its post.”

MacDailyNews Take: As we wrote yesterday, Gawker owns Gizmodo, which may or may not explain why their article tries to claim that Apple has suffered an embarrassment when it was AT&T’s security that was breached.

Ante and Worthen continue, “Gawker Media publicized the incident Wednesday after being contacted by a small group of computer experts calling itself Goatse Security. The group said it discovered the flaw, explaining that it was able to find the email addresses by guessing numbers that identify iPads connected to AT&T’s mobile network. The group said it uncovered 114,000 email addresses, including those of prominent officials in companies, politics and the military. Escher Auernheimer, a member of the group, said the group hasn’t heard from law enforcement and that it didn’t do anything illegal.”

“Thursday, FBI spokeswoman Katherine Schweit confirmed an investigation into the incident had been opened. But she wouldn’t comment on what the bureau is looking at. ‘It’s very early in the investigation,’ she added,” Ante and Worthen report. “Wednesday, the AT&T acknowledged that a flaw in its website made it possible for iPad users’ email addresses to be revealed. AT&T said it fixed the security problem by Tuesday.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Whether they realize it or not, Gawker Media seems to have quite the death wish.


  1. We didn’t do anything illigal…

    If you run a script that scans or probes another computer with the intention to discover data that is not yours….


  2. What is the consequence of knowing Carli Fiorina’s e-mail address (or Rahm Emanuel’s, or anyone else’s, for that matter)? Somebody is now going to spam them? Unlike before, when they didn’t get any spam…?

    And, oh, please, the reason I menioned Rahm Emanuel is because Valleyrag mentioned him as well as a prominent political figure. I implore you not to launch political slugfest. Let’s discuss the stupid Gawker; there’s plenty to deride right there…

  3. So does this mean I can hookup my hose to my neighbor’s house and water my lawn? Just because there’s a hydrant on the outside, doesn’t mean I can use it.
    Or plug my electric car at any outlet I find.
    What they did was not really legal, so they should punish them hard.

  4. Yep. The email alias I created to sign up for my iPad 3G service is now getting swamped with spam. Didn’t take someone long to sell those addresses…

    And Gawker is now dead to me. Too complicit in the worst stories of the day…

  5. What about all this ‘personal information’ and so on that the shit bloggers were talking about (including gawker)? Made it sound like anyone could get your bank details or something.

    Why are these people so dishonest? ‘Cos that’s the only way losers have any chance of winning.

  6. Good Night Gawker and Good Riddance!
    And I hope Apple clobbers you for the iPhone fiasco.
    You ruined a very good surprise and you will have to explain how and why you offered publicly a $5,000 reward to employees of Apple to spill the beans on any new device anonymously.

    Scum of the Earth! I really hope the government comes down on you. Scummy journalism at best.

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