Pentagon typo leaked millions of sensitive messages to African nation
Mali, an ally of Russia, will soon gain access to the messages
By Anders Hagstrom | Fox News
The issue comes from the U.S. military’s “.MIL” domain name used for emails, which is commonly mistyped as “.ML,” the domain for Mali. The leak has resulted in the exposure of unclassified but sensitive information, such as diplomatic documents, tax returns, passwords and the travel details of top officers, according to an initial report from the Financial Times.
The Pentagon acknowledged the issue in a statement to Fox News on Monday, saying emails sent outside the “.MIL” domain are typically blocked.
“The Department of Defense is aware of this issue and takes all unauthorized disclosures of Controlled National Security Information or Controlled Unclassified Information seriously. DoD has implemented policy, training, and technical controls to ensure that emails from the “.mil” domain are not delivered to incorrect domains. Such emails are blocked before they leave the .mil domain and the sender is notified that they must validate the email addresses of the intended recipients,” the Pentagon said.
A common typo within the U.S. military has misdirected millions of emails and messages containing sensitive information to the African country of Mali, the Pentagon confirmed Monday.
“While it is not possible to implement technical controls preventing the use of personal email accounts for government business, the Department continues to provide direction and training to DoD personnel. The office of the DoD CIO oversees this matter,” the statement continued.
News of the leaks first came from Johannes Zuurbier, a Dutch entrepreneur who manages Mali’s domain. Zuurbier told FT that he has collected at least 117,000 emails from within the Pentagon since January alone, and many more in years prior.