Vodafone Australia has come under fire following the revelation that a journalist's call and text records were accessed to uncover the source for a story on a serious security vulnerability pubished in 2011.
A former Vodafone Australia manager had instructed investigators to “use any means available” to track down the source of the story, and those investigators accessed the journalist's call and text records as a result, the Guardian reported.
Vodafone Australia said in a statement that it has contacted the journalist to apologize for the violation of her privacy, and has reported the matter to Australian police, the privacy commissioner and regulator ACMA.
The statement calls the conduct of the former employee “unacceptable and potentially criminal.”
Vodafone had previously denied that senior management asked the investigators to access the phone records.
The company said it had previously commissioned one of Australia's accounting firms to conduct a review into the circumstances around the access of the logs, and that investigation concluded that “there was no evidence VHA management had instructed the employee to access the messages.”
Vodafone also asserted that the article detailing the allegations that the journalist's phone records were accessed contained a number of factual inaccuracies.