Feeds

Fun and games in NZ politics

Data breach claim and counter-claim

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Security for virtualized datacentres

Most people think giving their names to a politician is a bad idea because they’ll spend the rest of their lives being nagged by the party. New Zealand’s Labour Party has taken this to a whole new level, leaving donor details – including names and donation amounts – in plain view.

The predictable result is that a right-wing blogger in the Land of the Long White Cloud has grabbed the details from the party’s online donation system, and is threatening publication.

According to New Zealand’s Dominion Post, the breach has Labour trying to contact 16,000 donors to tell them their information has been compromised.

Although the party is calling the data breach “malicious”, Cameron Slater, who blogs as “Whaleoil”, says the data was so accessible that Google and other indexing bots had indexed the information. However, demonstrating his own lack of understanding of how the Internet works, Slater says the information will be cached “forever” by Google, using a link that Google has already removed.

Whether or not any law has been broken is not, however, a simple matter of the adequacy of Labour’s site security: unauthorized access to a computer system is, in many jurisdictions, sufficient to raise a case without considering whether the system was badly-protected.

Slater seems aware that he’s skating on thin ice. In a later pose, he states that the Labour system provided sufficient information for him to have gone deeper and fetched credit card information, writing: “In the MySQL database files there were also plain txt strings that contained other database passwords along with the user name and passwords of their credit card provider.”

However, he wrote, “I never accessed these areas, to do so would have been illegal”. That horse may already have bolted, merely by his access of other data, which he describes as being solely the fault of Labour’s “woeful breach of peoples’ privacy”. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
NASTY SSL 3.0 vuln to be revealed soon – sources (Update: It's POODLE)
So nasty no one's even whispering until patch is out
Russian hackers exploit 'Sandworm' bug 'to spy on NATO, EU PCs'
Fix imminent from Microsoft for Vista, Server 2008, other stuff
Microsoft pulls another dodgy patch
Redmond makes a hash of hashing add-on
'LulzSec leader Aush0k' found to be naughty boy not worthy of jail
15 months home detention leaves egg on feds' faces as they grab for more power
Forget passwords, let's use SELFIES, says Obama's cyber tsar
Michael Daniel wants to kill passwords dead
FBI boss: We don't want a backdoor, we want the front door to phones
Claims it's what the Founding Fathers would have wanted – catching killers and pedos
Kill off SSL 3.0 NOW: HTTPS savaged by vicious POODLE
Pull it out ASAP, it is SWISS CHEESE
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.