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FOX "Not the sharpest tacks in the drawer"

Reported by Chrish - July 23, 2007 -

That's the declaration of one of a number of readers that alerted us that the FOX News website oopsed big-time this morning, exposing personal information of at least 1.5 million people. I won't pretend to understand the technical aspects and will let those who do 'splain it:

WikiNews reports

"A security hole on the Fox News web server Sunday exposed sensitive content to the public, including login information that allowed hackers to access names, phone numbers, and email addresses of at least 1.5 million people.

Wikinews has learned that an FTP server belonging to publishing company Ziff-Davis could be accessed with a username and password found on the Fox News site, with customer details among the internal data publicly available.

The FTP site, used for collaboration between different global aspects of Ziff-Davis business, contains data ranging from expense sheets to resumes to opt-out lists used by customers who wish to avoid receiving unsolicited emails. Many of the compromised files make reference to Acxiom, a data management company that in 2003 experienced a similar theft of personal information. Unlike in the 2003 breach, however, it is not believed that the files exposed due to the Fox News security oversight contain customer Social Security numbers or bank accounts. However, telephone and address details appear in the data. A number of the email addresses appearing on the list end in .gov or .mil, suggesting the named individual is a member of the U.S. government or military, respectively.

[...] Security expert David Hutter says the Fox News mistake is an example of "sloppiness", though the hole had been patched by noon Monday. Neither Fox News nor Ziff-Davis have commented on the breach."

Read the whole article here.

A Digg story reports that they left their image directory open. The link provided now redirects to the FOX News main web page, but it has been mirrored at http://www.halfagiraffe.com/foxnews.htm
Warning: it is a bandwidth pig.

A site I've never heard of, Whitedust.net, who declares they are all about information sharing without an agenda, period, has some interesting links and an ironic backstory.

I'm just wondering why they have personal information on 1.5 million people on their website in the first place.