Russian Kids’ Emails to ‘Father Frost’ ‘Hacked’: Moscow Mocks America’s Concerns

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By Louise Mensch | 3:58 pm, December 14, 2016

Russia is trolling America by publishing a tongue-in-cheek report on its propagandist news site, RT, claiming “US websites” are hacking some very special personal data – the emails that Russian children send to ‘Father Frost’, the Russian version of Santa Claus.

Calling it ‘Santa Sabotage’, the website claims that sites in the US and, er, Australia, are stealing names and data of children and making them public (though some Russians are doing it too).

Parents beware! A data breach has been discovered somewhere it was least expected. The Russian telecom watchdog has tracked 55 websites which disclose personal data from the online letters children write to Father Frost (the Russian version of Santa Claus) ahead of the New Year.

“We’ve discovered 55 websites that sabotage the work of Father Frost and make the personal data of kids from their letters to Father Frost public,” the watchdog, Roskomnadzor, said on its account in the VKontakte social network.

Why Russian children would be emailing “Father Frost” remains unclear. In the spirit of battling the Santa Sabotage, Heat Street checked the ‘Russia’s Facebook’ network, VKontatke, and found a mild warning from the state data watchdog:

With the approach of the New Year holidays, the number of sites with letters to Santa Claus, who are subject to breaches of the personal data of children is increasing. Currently we have identified 76 breaches for which measures have been taken.

Therefore, it was decided to create a sample letter to Santa Claus with the recommendations [for parents]

The sample ‘Santa’ letter is here.

Russia does not appear to be entirely serious about this, and is instead using the non-story to mock American congressional calls for an investigation into Russia’s hacking of the Democratic National Committee emails and its other attempts to interfere in the U.S. presidential election.