ATO staffer leaks phone hacking how-to online, reveals fraud investigation tactics

A tax office staffer has been disciplined after publishing a step-by-step guide to hack mobile phones, potentially teaching criminals to steal sensitive information.

Key points:

  • Disclosure by staffer shows how to bypass passwords, obtain data when phone is flat
  • Staffer claims to have worked on intelligence taskforces, researched dark web for Government
  • Document refers to Cellebrite, the company that reportedly helped FBI hack San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone

The disclosure reveals the Australian Tax Office’s (ATO) fraud investigation tactics and a push for powers normally associated with police and intelligence agencies.

The instructions showed how to bypass passwords and obtain data even if the phone battery is flat and does not have a sim card.

The tax office was unaware of the breach when contacted for comment by the ABC. The material was taken offline within an hour.

The employee, who published the material on LinkedIn, claims to have worked on intelligence taskforces and researched the so-called dark web for the Government.

The ABC understands the document was presented within the tax office.

It demonstrates how to retrieve deleted data, access text messages and phone call records.

Source: ATO staffer leaks phone hacking how-to online, reveals fraud investigation tactics – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)