In a breach of the White House’s unclassified computer system, presumed Russian hackers made away with some of President Obama’s email correspondence. These same hackers seem to have burrowed their way into the State Department’s unclassified system.
But they didn’t crack Obama’s BlackBerry. And they didn’t crack the servers that the BlackBerry connects to.
However, they did manage to access the email of White House staff who communicate with the Commander in Chief. And this is how they obtained some, but not all of the president’s email.
There’s quite a worrisome story here, but this is not a political or world event blog. This is a blog for BlackBerry fans.
So what can we BlackBerry fans take from this?
Well once again, while systems that should be protected were hacked, a BlackBerry was not. That’s important.
However, information was obtained about a BlackBerry user, because of communication with other platforms.
Now, my personal information is nowhere near as important to the world as the privileged information of the President of the United States. I know my information is not secured in the same method as that of Obama’s. However, my information is not as sought out as Obama’s either.
I have a BlackBerry. Out of the box, not on BES or any MDM server, yet on the most secure platform. I can walk around feeling good that my information is safe. But is it? Not really. Why? Because of my friends, family, and coworkers.
I speak to other BlackBerry users from around the world nearly all day everyday, and of course I’m speaking about the other folks here at UTB. And I feel safe. I know that what I choose to share with them, will stay with them. Unless someone purposely decides to take screenshots and tweet them, the flow between us is safe.
However, I also speak to many other people daily, who choose iPhone or Android. And we know that those platforms are an open sieve. The amount of iPhone hacks and Android malware is obscene, and I would be shocked if those I spoke to didn’t have something hidden away on their phone collecting information. In fact, we know that with a growing number of apps, that strangely enough are not considered malware, information is collected on us. WhatsApp has my number, and surely my name to go along with it, because I have friends on the app, and we know the app has crawled their contacts. It’s how it works. And now, thanks to the purchase of WhatsApp by Facebook, it’s probably connected my number with my old, Facebook account.
This is one reason why BlackBerry users can’t simply be content with owning a BlackBerry. This is one reason why so many of us become BlackBerry evangelists, working to bring our friends and family to our much beloved brand. We like our privacy. We’re entitled to it. And it’s upsetting that our friends who may just be following a fad, are freely giving up our privacy so that they can have a chat with Siri.
This White House hack will surely be a source of conversation for the days to come, and it will be a great opportunity to once again introduce your friends to BlackBerry.
If you’d like to know more about the hack, head over to The New York Times for a nicely written post.