Spokesman among targets in HP leak probe

Michael Moeller was among those whose records were improperly accessed, CNET News.com has learned.

Ina Fried Former Staff writer, CNET News
During her years at CNET News, Ina Fried changed beats several times, changed genders once, and covered both of the Pirates of Silicon Valley.
Ina Fried
2 min read
Hewlett-Packard spokesman Michael Moeller was one of two employees whose phone records were improperly accessed as part of an investigation into unauthorized leaks to the press, CNET News.com has learned.

Moeller, a former reporter, was among those whom the computer maker had targeted in its probe, which is now the subject of a congressional inquiry as well as criminal investigations by state and federal authorities.

"The investigators' suspicions were misplaced and baseless," Hewlett-Packard's Vice President of External Communications Robert Sherbin told CNET News.com late Friday.

For his part, Moeller said "(CEO) Mark Hurd and (Chairman) Pattie Dunn both personally apologized to me," Moeller said. "I think it should speak volumes that I am still doing my job."

On Tuesday, Dunn apologized to HP employees for the tactics used in the probe, at the same time disclosing that two HP employees had been targeted, though the company did not name them.

HP has said that nine journalists were also targeted as part of the probe, including three reporters at CNET News.com, three reporters at BusinessWeek, two reporters at the Wall Street Journal and one reporter at the New York Times. Moeller was a journalist at BusinessWeek and PC Week before entering public relations.

Earlier on Friday, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce asked four people, including Dunn, HP General Counsel Ann Baskins and outside lawyer Larry Sonsini to testify in a Sept. 28 hearing. The committee has given HP until Monday to turn over a number of records related to its probe.

California's Attorney General has also said that he believes he has enough information to bring criminal charges against people both inside and outside the company.

Dunn said Tuesday that she would step down as Chairman in January, though she said she will remain on the board. Following Dunn's announcement, Director George Keyworth said he would resign, acknowledging in a press release that he was a source for a CNET News.com story in January, but also lashing out at the leak probe.