The culprits allegedly obtained a year of ‘sensitive’ messages, according to the Mail on Sunday
The security breach was reportedly discovered in the summer when then-Foreign Secretary Truss was battling for the Tory leadership and prompted former Prime Minister Boris Johnson to order a complete media blackout due to the sensitivity of the case, the Mail on Sunday reported citing unnamed security sources. .
The messages obtained by the hackers would have included Truss’ “Highly sensitive discussions with senior international foreign ministers on the war in Ukraine, including detailed discussions on arms deliveries,” depending on the paper.
Although the details of the hack remain unclear, the culprits allegedly uploaded up to a year of recordings, including private conversations in which Truss and his political ally Kwasi Kwarteng criticized Johnson.
The report blamed foreign state actors “allegedly working for Vladimir Putin’s Russia”, although a cyber expert quoted by the newspaper also named other usual suspects such as “China, North Korea and Iran who would have a huge interest in knowing what the foreign minister is communicating.”
Even though the incident raised fears of potential blackmail, an information blackout was ordered, as it was “not a great look for intelligence services if the Foreign Secretary’s phone can be so easily raided for embarrassing personal messages”, the Mail quoted a source as saying.
A government spokesman declined to comment. “individual security arrangements”, insisting that the British government has “robust systems in place to protect against cyber threats.”
UK opposition parties have already demanded an urgent independent inquiry into the allegations.
Labor Home Secretary Yvette Cooper said there was “serious security questions about why and how this information was leaked or published at this time, which also need to be urgently investigated.”
Meanwhile, Liberal Democrat foreign affairs spokeswoman Layla Moran said that “If it turns out that this information was withheld from the public to protect Liz Truss’s leadership bid, that would be unforgivable.”
Truss then replaced Johnson as Tory leader and became prime minister on September 6, only to step down 45 days later, becoming the shortest prime minister in UK history.
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