Letter: Palin's use of Yahoo mail disputed

Computerworld told to check its facts

Dear Sir,

Carl Jongsma in his “Sarah Palin demonstrates the perils of webmail” (Computerworld, September 29) starts off very strongly with “If you need any more reminders about why it isn’t a good idea to use external mail servers to conduct critical business” and follows up with “use of non-government email accounts to conduct official business”. It all gives the appearance of Sarah, clueless or shrewd, using a Yahoo mail account for work purposes.

But as Carl must admit: “it seems Sarah was doing this”. Well, we can go further, because we know Sarah didn’t. The cracker, son of a well-known Democrat, has admitted it was all personal. Not sure where Carl got his image proof from, perhaps from a clueless media.

The next part of this opinion piece argues against webmail as if it was inherently insecure. That’s nonsense of course. You don’t have to use password recovery. You can simply type in your password for the password recovery questions if you’re sure you’re not going to forget your password. Or if you use a master password file.

It’s just how you use this technology.

I would love to see some more fact checking in Computerworld and tighter editorial control even of opinion columns. There’s a reason why we pay money for a Computerworld subscription, and that’s for the expectation that someone has actually verified the facts.

Yours sincerely,

Berend de Boer

Editor replies:

Sorry Berend, you’re wrong, at least on the first count.

If you look at the email index posted on Wikileaks, as opposed to just the screenshots, you will find: an email from Randall Ruaro, Governor Palin’s deputy chief of staff, titled “Draft letter to Governor Schwarzenegger/Container tax”; another titled “Court of Appeal nominations” and one titled “Please approve”.

There are also several related to the Department of Public Safety, which is in charge of the state troopers. There is also one from her chief of staff, Michael Nizich, titled “Using Royalty Oil to Lower the Cost of Fuel for Alaskans” and another titled “Confidential ethics matter” among others.

We look forward to your subscription renewal.


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