The US has accidentally been leaking info to Mali for a decade

A simple typo has resulted in millions of sensitive US military emails ending up in Mali, according to The Financial Times.


For a decade, many US military folks intending to send emails to .mil addresses (the suffix for the US military) have accidentally sent them to .ml, the suffix for Mali. And until yesterday (Monday), Mali’s .ml domain was managed by a Dutch consultant, who tried to warn the Pentagon.

But now that Russia-aligned Mali has resumed control of the .ml domain again, it potentially has access to information like:

  • 📜 Staffing lists at US bases
  • 🎖️ The travel plans for the US Army’s highest-ranking officer, and
  • ✈️ Even corrosion problems impacting Australian F-35s.

Intrigue’s take: We didn’t need a reminder, but we got one anyway: national security systems can actually be pretty fragile, because ultimately they’re made up of people. And people make mistakes. Big ones.

Also worth noting:

  • Reportedly, none of the information sent to Mali was classified (such info is typically sent through separate encrypted systems).
  • Unclassified info can still offer valuable insights to an adversary.