BBC Host: Piers Morgan Told Me How Phone Hacking Works

2:37 AM PST 05/24/2012 by Georg Szalai
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Jeremy Paxman

"It was clearly something that he was familiar with," Jeremy Paxman told the Leveson Inquiry into U.K. media ethics.

BBC host Jeremy Paxman told a U.K. media ethics inquiry late Wednesday that Piers Morgan explained to him how phone hacking works, the Guardian reported.

Paxman told the so-called Leveson Inquiry -- which, in the wake of the News Corp. phone-hacking scandal, has been probing the U.K. media's relationship with politics, police and the public -- that the CNN host gave him the explanation at a lunch held at the headquarters of The Daily Mirror, of which Morgan used to be the editor.

Paxman said that Morgan sat next to him during the lunch and explained how to hack a mobile phone. "I don't know whether he was making this up ... but it was clearly something that he was familiar with and I wasn't," he said.

The BBC host said Morgan asked him if he had a mobile phone and whether he had a security setting, according to the Guardian. "He then explained that the way to get access to people's messages was to go to the factory default setting and press either 0000 or 1234 and that if you didn't put on your own code … his words: 'You're a fool,' " Paxman added.

Morgan later on Wednesday tweeted: "Right - that's the last time I'm inviting Jeremy Paxman to lunch. Ungrateful little wretch."

Morgan previously told the Leveson Inquiry that he didn't listen to hacked phone messages in high-profile case.

Email: Georg.Szalai@thr.com
Twitter: @georgszalai

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