CBS News revealed last week that Sharyl Attkisson’s computers had indeed been compromised — and now the investigative reporter is having her say.
“This suspicious activity has been going on for quite some time – both on my CBS computer and my personal computer,” Attkisson said Monday during a CBS Philly interview.
“CBS then hired its own independent cyber security firm, which has been conducting a thorough forensic exam … they were able to rule out malware, phishing programs, that sort of thing,” she adds.
Attkisson, who has been aggressively pursuing Fast and Furious and Benghazi, said there were moments when her computers exhibited bizarre behavior.
“There were just signs of unusual happenings for many months, odd behavior like the computers just turning themselves on at night and then turning themselves back off again,” she said.
“I was basically able to verify and obtain information from my sources on the suspicious activity and I reported it to CBS News in January because of course it included CBS equipment and systems,” she added.
Citing legal counsel, Attkisson couldn’t say whether she was hacked as a resulted of her questions about the Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi – but she did note that she noticed her computers started acting strange at around the same time.
“Whoever was in my work computer, the only thing I was working on were work-related things with CBS were big stories I guess during the time period in questions were I guess Benghazi and ‘Fast and Furious,’” she said,
“The intruders did have access to personal information including passwords to my financial accounts and so on, but didn’t tamper with those, so they weren’t interested in stealing my identity or doing things to my finances. So people can decide on their own what they might have been trying to do in there,” she added.
Attkisson was then asked about how she felt about being hacked. Here’s how she reposnded:
Even apart from this specific incident with my computers … I operate as though someone is looking at what I do, just because that’s the safest thing.
While it’s upsetting to have that sort of intrusion done, it’s also not that unexpected.
She added that the CBS News investigation is ongoing and that she is far from being finished with the Benghazi story.
“We’re continuing to move forward aggressively, CBS News takes this very seriously, as do I,” she said.
“I think whenever an unauthorized party comes into the home of an American, whether it’s any private citizen or journalist and gets in their house, searches their computers — these are computers my family uses — and they’re inserting or removing material for whatever their reasons are, I think that’s a really serious and disturbing matter and we’re gonna follow it up and keep pursuing it,” she added.
You can listen to the complete interview here.
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Featured image CBS News.