Several leading journalists across a range of genres have received warning from Google that state-sponsored hackers are attempting to steal their Gmail passwords and gain access to their email, according to Politico.
Among those cautioned were CNN senior media reporter Brian Stelter, GQ special contributor Keith Olbermann, Julia Ioffe of The Atlantic, Jonathan Chait of New York Magazine and Ezra Klein, the founder of Vox, who says he’s been receiving the warning as recently as in the last few days.
In several of their cases, the alerts started coming a few weeks after the November election and appear as a bright red band across the top of their incoming Gmail, reading: “Warning: Google may have detected government-backed attackers trying to steal your password.”
Another day, another state-sponsored phishing attack. pic.twitter.com/rlzI7s1jBE
— Julia Ioffe (@juliaioffe) January 27, 2017
“The fact that all this started right after the election suggests to me that journalists are the next wave to be targeted by state-sponsored hackers in the way that Democrats were during it,” one journalist told Politico. “I worry that the outcome is going to be the same: Someone, somewhere, is going to get hacked, and then the contents of their gmail will be weaponized against them — and by extension all media.”
Google went on to say that the accounts hadn’t already been compromised but warnings were sent due to ” an abundance of caution.”
There are more than 1 billion Gmail users worldwide.
A spokesperson for Google has yet to respond to TheWrap’s request for further information.