Probe on 2 senators’ email breach sought
Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III has ordered an investigation into the allegations of opposition senators that their office emails were hacked.
Although he has not received an official request from the offices of Senators Paolo Benigno Aquino IV and Francis Pangilinan, Pimentel said he decided to take action anyway since they have already brought it out in the open.
“I have given instructions to find out from our IT depart- ment what our security measures are and if such a thing is possible and if logs record such a thing,” Pimentel said.
In a press briefing last Thursday, Aquino said that the email accounts of two of his staff members and three from Pangilinan’s office were hacked in an apparent attempt to link them to a destabilization plot against the administration.
Aquino said that the breach was suspected to have been done using the internet server of the Senate and masked through the use of a virtual private network.
Based on their offices’ own investigation into the incidents, Aquino said that the culprits attempted to hide their actions by creating filters on the affected email accounts so that the bogus emails sent would be deleted from their accounts immediately.
Aquino said they are coordinating with the offices of the other members of the Senate minority bloc, who they suspect could have also been victims of hacking based on the subject of the emails they were able to trace from their staff.
He alleged that the perpetrators were trying to secure email addresses or other private data from the hacked accounts through phishing and that it appeared that the members of the Liberal Party (LP) were targeted.
In a statement yesterday, the LP senators denounced the administration’s continued insistence on linking the party to efforts to destabilize the government.