Photo from Emily’s photostream on Flickr. Used under a Creative Commons License.
Foreign journalists in China are still waiting for answers after their Yahoo email accounts were hacked into last week.
Kathleen McLaughlin, a freelance journalist and board member of the Foreign Correspondents Club of China, said that journalists who contacted Yahoo about the fiasco still don’t know how the accounts were disabled, which she called “incredibly frustrating.”
Upon trying to access their Yahoo accounts last week, over a dozen rights activists, academics and journalists covering China received an automated message that read, “we have detected an issue [with your account].” According to the FCC, eight of the incidents involved Beijing-based reporters and three involved journalists in Taiwan.
Speaking to AP, one victim of the attacks, The Independent’s and Irish Times’ China correspondent, Clifford Coonan, said:
I’d just be interested to see if anyone in the business community or outside of journalism and academia has had the same problem, then it might be less sinister (…) It’s obviously annoying, but if it’s just journalists and academics, that’s scary.
In a statement, Yahoo said, “[it] does not generally disclose information around reported breaches, but we take security very seriously and we take appropriate action in the event of any kind of breach.”
McLaughlin’s own account was restored on Tuesday. Most recently, Graham D. Norris, a media professional in Beijing, said that the FCC China has reported its website remains down following persistent denial-of-service attacks over the past two days. It’s gotten so bad that they’ve had to shut down their website:
“We do not know who is behind the attacks or what their motivation is,” the club’s board said.