Trade documents hacked from ex-Cabinet minister’s email account, report claims

Written by PublicTechnology staff on 5 August 2020 in News
News

Liam Fox’s systems were accessed by suspected Russian hackers, it has been reported

Credit: John Stillwell/PA

Leaked documents used by Labour in the run-up to the 2019 election were stolen from the email account of former Cabinet minister Liam Fox by suspected Russian hackers, it has been reported.

According to Reuters, Fox’s account was accessed multiple times between 12 July and 21 October last year, with sources telling the news service that the attack gave the appearance of being state-backed.

The government last month accused “Russian actors” of trying to interfere in the election by seeking to “promote” the documents on a UK-US trade deal and confirmed there is an ongoing criminal investigation into how they were acquired.

After initially appearing on the site Reddit, the material was picked up by the Labour Party and used by Jeremy Corbyn to attack the government over ahead to the December 2019 poll.


Related content


There is no suggestion Labour was aware of how the documents made their way online and the party has said it condemns "any attempt by Russia" to interfere with British democracy.

It is not clear whether Fox (pictured above), who stood down from the Cabinet in the July reshuffle prompted by the Number 10 handover from Theresa May to Boris Johnson, was a Cabinet minister at the time of the breach.

A government spokesperson said: “There is an ongoing criminal investigation into how the documents were acquired, and it would be inappropriate to comment further at this point. They added that the government had “very robust systems in place to protect the IT systems of officials and staff.”

 

About the author

This story originally appeared on PublicTechnology sister publication PoliticsHome

Share this page

Tags

Categories

CONTRIBUTIONS FROM READERS

Please login to post a comment or register for a free account.

Related Articles

Lost data on 16,000 coronavirus cases pinned on Excel
6 October 2020

The limitations of the popular Microsoft software likely caused the delays in processing data

Reforms will allow civil service to ‘respond faster and better to the needs of the public’, PM claims
18 September 2020

Boris Johnson tells select committee that pandemic response has shown ‘there are some times when we need to move faster’

‘Unless you get the ethics of data right, you'll fail on the effectiveness as well’
17 September 2020

The head of the Royal Statistical Society Stian Westlake talks algorithms, politicians and the current ‘favourable wind’ gathering in government behind his profession

Related Sponsored Articles

Reimagining Employee Engagement
13 October 2020

Studies have shown that an engaged employee is happier, more productive, and more committed to their job. So how can we encourage employee engagement? Trickle suggests innovative solutions ...