UK politicians call for ‘urgent independent inquiry’ into Liz Truss phone hacking claim

Following the unconfirmed report, UK political leaders called for an inquiry into the government’s actions on national security claiming he was using a personal phone former prime minister Liz Truss was targeted by alleged Russian hackers.

A report by the Mail on Sunday, citing unnamed sources, claims private messages exchanged between Truss and foreign officials when she was foreign secretary, some of which apparently included sensitive information about the war in Ukraine, and private communications with the former leader Ministry of Finance Kwasi Kwarteng, were hacked. in an alleged cyber attack.

It also alleged that British government officials became aware of the breach over the summer and suggested that former Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Trus’ predecessor, and Cabinet Secretary Simon Keys had deliberately kept it from the media during Truss’ campaign to become Conservative leader. party and the prime minister. Truss, who was eventually appointed by Queen Elizabeth II to succeed Johnson, announced his resignation earlier this month after just six weeks in office.

A UK government spokesman declined to “comment on individual security arrangements” in a statement to CBS News.

“The government has robust systems in place to protect against cyber threats. This includes regular security briefings for ministers and advice on protecting their personal data and mitigating cyber threats,” the statement said.

British Prime Minister Liz Truss delivers a speech outside 10 Downing Street in central London on October 20, 2022 to announce her resignation.

DANIEL LEAL/AFP via Getty Images

Meanwhile, Michael Gove, who was recently reappointed to his government role as advancement secretary, shared a similar response to questions about the alleged hack during an interview with Sky News on Sunday.

“I don’t know all the details of what security breach took place,” Gove said. “What I do know is that the government has very robust protocols in place to make sure that individuals are protected, but also that government security and national security are also protected.”

However, Labor leaders have called for an investigation into the potential cyber security breach, and Yvette Cooper, the party’s law and order spokeswoman, suggests the Mail on Sunday report raises wider concerns for the British government and national security.

“Obviously these are very serious allegations,” Cooper later told Sky News. “This raises issues related to cyber security. This is why cyber security must be taken so seriously in all governments, the role of hostile states, but also allegations that a cabinet minister is using a personal phone for serious government business, and serious questions about why this information or this history leaked or informed right now.”

Cooper suggested that each of these questions points to “how the government doesn’t take national security seriously enough.”

Leila Moran, the Liberal Democrat foreign affairs spokeswoman, responded to reports of the alleged cyberattack on social media.

“We need an urgent independent investigation to uncover the truth. Was Liz Truss’s phone hacked by the Kremlin, was there a news blackout, and if so, why?” Moran tweeted. “If this was kept from the public to protect Liz Truss’s leadership bid, it would be inexcusable.”

The foreign minister doubled down on her calls for an investigation a second later tweet published on Sunday. “These allegations are extremely troubling and raise serious questions about the government’s lax handling of personal devices,” she wrote, adding: “We need an urgent investigation to uncover the truth.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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