April 23rd, 2010
01:38 PM ET

Palin testifies in hacking case

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin testified that she did not realize anyone had hacked her Yahoo e-mail account during the 2008 presidential campaign until it was reported in the news media, CNN affiliate WATE reported Friday.

The GOP's 2008 vice-presidential nominee took the stand for about an hour Friday morning in the Knoxville, Tennessee, trial of a man accused of hacking her e-mail, a manager in the court clerk's office said.

The prosecution is presenting its case against David Kernell, 22, who is charged with felony identity theft, wire fraud, intentionally accessing Palin's e-mail account without authorization and obstructing an FBI investigation.

Kernell, who was a University of Tennessee student, has pleaded not guilty. He is the son of state Rep. Mike Kernell, a Democrat who has served in the Tennessee House for more than 30 years.

Palin told jurors that her life and the campaign were disrupted when the hacked e-mails were published, WATE reported.

It took several days for her to deal with media questions after her personal photographs and contacts were posted on the internet, she testified.

She closed her Yahoo e-mail account and her children gave their cell phones up to Secret Service agents, she said, according to WATE.

Prosecutors say Kernell accessed Palin's e-mail by resetting the password. He then allegedly read the contents and made screenshots of the e-mail directory and other personal information, according to a federal indictment.

"The personal information included, and was not limited to, other e-mail addresses of family members, pictures of family members, at least one cell phone number of a family member, the dates of birth of Governor Palin and another family member, and Governor Palin's address book," the indictment says.

The screenshots were posted on a public website, and Kernell is alleged to also have posted the newly created password on that site, allowing others to access Palin's e-mail account, it says.

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Filed under: Politics • Sarah Palin
soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. akeina

    That's funny. I thought she only talked when FAUX News paid her. This woman is a joke. She can see Russia from her house, but she can't see the American People laughing in her face?

    April 23, 2010 at 4:05 pm | Report abuse |
  2. JonathanPDX

    How did he hack it? Did he read her password off her hand?

    April 23, 2010 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
  3. P S

    Simple rule is, if you despise someone, even if they deserve it, don't act more hideously than the person you despise, or you will lend them credibility. Note to you, hacker d-bag...YOU'RE NOT HELPING.

    I hope he meets a lot of people in jail who are less liberal than he is.

    April 23, 2010 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Genevieve

    Ok, so who cares?

    There are far more important things going on right now.

    and @JonathanPDX: LOL!

    April 23, 2010 at 5:17 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Janie

    Wild guess of what her password might have been: "Maverick"

    April 23, 2010 at 9:46 pm | Report abuse |
  6. monti

    He didn't do it to try to smear her, he didn't do it to defame her, he did it for the lulz.

    April 24, 2010 at 12:45 am | Report abuse |
  7. Acciah

    People get hacked every day and no one cares....She should get a better password and better internet security..One that's NOT paid for by the people of Alaska. This is a waste of taxpayer dollars when we have none to spare.

    April 24, 2010 at 2:49 am | Report abuse |
  8. Deb

    Well her "clues" for resetting her "forgotten" passwords were of KNOWN or easy to find information. This cluesless blunder set up her accounts with real information such as mothers maiden name,or other easy to find facts.

    The kid just kept trying known information tell it let him in and reset it.

    This dumb woman was this () close to the second highest office in the land and a heartbeat away from being POTUS.

    What the kid really did was expose the fact that PALIN who ran on a transparency platform USED the Yahoo account to circumvent the state laws that emails regarding government business are done on the STATE OF ALASKA's secure server. It showed emails of government business and people in her "circle" being guided to use the Yahoo account and NOT the state government accounts. It also showed that Todd aka "first dude" was very involved in the government including placement of high offices.

    Now do you think this ditz should be in any office of the people?

    I certainly think NOT!

    April 24, 2010 at 7:32 am | Report abuse |
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