Feeds

Lewd voicemail hack on MP prompts probe

What's the story, moaning Tory?

Boost IT visibility and business value

A prankster hacked into an MP's parliamentary voicemail and left a sexually offensive message for callers, the Mail on Sunday reports.

Tory MP Claire Perry told the paper that the voicemail of her landline was changed so that callers were asked whether they had recently engaged in a sex act, which she declined to describe. Perry reckons the breach is linked to a "general, system-wide failure" of Parliament's comms network.

"The Clerk of the House is taking it very seriously and the authorities are now investigating," she added.

Although the incident may provoke calls for a general review of phone and (perhaps) email security in the mother of parliaments, the MoS's spin that the incident illustrates a vulnerability that might be exploited by cyber-terrorists is comically overblown.

It's much more likely the Tory MP for Devizes, Wiltshire, forgot to change the default password, a factor subsequently exploited by a prankster or a malicious insider, perhaps someone who harbours a grudge against Perry.

If hackers had obtained compromised access to parliamentary voicemail systems, as Perry and the Mail on Sunday seem to think might have happened, then why draw attention to this by changing the voicemail message of a lowly backbencher? It's unclear whether or not anybody's voicemail messages were actually intercepted, a far more troubling possibility especially amid the ongoing controversy over the News of the World hacking scandal.

Perry was elected in May 2010, and since then she has submitted a private member's bill calling for Remembrance Sunday to be made a bank holiday. However, she is arguably more famous for her off-the-cuff remark, when she failed to attract the attention of Speaker John Bercow: "What do I have to do? Give him a blowjob?" ®

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

More from The Register

next story
Microsoft: We plan to CLEAN UP this here Windows Store town
Paid-for apps that provide free downloads? Really
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
Who needs hackers? 'Password1' opens a third of all biz doors
GPU-powered pen test yields more bad news about defences and passwords
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Hear ye, young cyber warriors of the realm: GCHQ wants you
Get involved, get a job and then never discuss work ever again
Chinese hackers spied on investigators of Flight MH370 - report
Classified data on flight's disappearance pinched
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
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?