Several Trump family members and administration officials fell victim to an anonymous email prankster who learned their email addresses and contacted them, assuming the identities of senior advisor Jared Kushner, former chief of staff Reince Priebus, Donald Trump Jr. and presumptive Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman Jr.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told CNN that the White House would be “looking into these incidents further … We take all cyber-related issues very seriously.”
The self-described prankster, who goes by the handle @SINON_REBORN on Twitter, used the access they gained to Trump administration officials to make mischief. The prankster told CNN they “try and keep it on the humorous side of things” and that they were “not trying to get the keys to the vault or anything like that.”
Pretending to be Eric Trump, the prankster sent a message of best wishes to Jon Huntsman Jr.
CNN also posted screenshots of an exchange between the prankster and Homeland Security Department adviser Tom Bossert, who is responsible for the Homeland Security’s response to counterterrorism and cybersecurity.
Posing as Jared Kushner, the unnamed prankster invited Bossert to a “soiree” in August, promising “food of at least comparible (sic) quality to that which we ate in Iraq.” Bossert responded with, “Thanks, Jared. With a promise like that, I can’t refuse,” adding his personal email address “if you ever need it.”
The prankster also impersonated Reince Priebus and lobbed shots at then-Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci, potentially exacerbating the feud between the two.
The day after Priebus resigned, the prankster sent an email to Scaramucci’s real email address, writing in part: “General Kelly will do a fine job. I’ll even admit he will do a better job than me. But the way in which that transition has come about has been diabolical. And hurtful. I don’t expect a reply.”
Scaramucci, who was still the White House communications director, responded: “You know what you did. We all do. Even today. But rest assured we were prepared. A Man would apologize.”
The prankster responded with, “I have nothing to apologize for,” prompting Scaramucci to write back:
“Read Shakespeare. Particularly Othello. You are right there. My family is fine by the way and will thrive. I know what you did. No more replies from me.”
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