by Zoe Fox
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has been under fire from world leaders to step down this week. He’s also under fire from hacktivist group Anonymous, who leaked hundreds of his office’s emails on Monday.
While Anonymous is infamous for its hacking know-how, it doesn’t take a genius computer programmer to guess one of the passwords commonly used by Assad’s office accounts: 12345. The string of consecutive numbers is the second-weakest password according to a 2011 study.
Anonymous broke into the mail server of the Syrian Ministry of Presidential Affairs, accessing some 78 inboxes of Assad’s staffers, according a report from Israeli daily Haaretz. The password 12345 was associated with several of the accounts.
Mansour Fadlallah Azzam, the minister of presidential affairs and Bouthaina Shaaban, Assad’s media adviser, were among the victims of the inbox hacks.
Haaretz obtained and published one email that included documents intended to prepare the Syrian leader for his December 2011 interview with Barbara Walters. In the interview, Assad claimed the Syrian government was not killing its people.
“We don’t kill our people,” Assad told ABC “No government in the world kills its people, unless it’s led by a crazy person.”
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