Jeremy Paxman was told how he could access voicemail messages by former Daily Mirror editor Piers Morgan, the Leveson inquiry has heard.
Piers Morgan boasted of his phone-hacking abilities in 2002, according to Jeremy Paxman (Picture: AP)
The Newsnight anchorman said he attended a lunch at the Mirror in Canary Wharf in September 2002 where Mr Morgan teased Ulrika Jonsson about her relationship with England football manager Sven-Goran Eriksson, saying he knew about a conversation they had.
Mr Paxman told the inquiry: ‘He turned to me and said, “Have you got a mobile phone?” I said yes, he asked if there was a security setting on the message bit of it. I didn’t know what he was talking about.
‘He then explained 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”.’
The presenter said he remembered the lunch for two reasons: he wondered why he had been invited and because of what Morgan said. ‘Mr Morgan was teasing Ulrika that he knew what had happened in a conversation between her and Sven-Goran Eriksson,’ said Mr Paxman.
Mr Morgan tweeted in response: ‘That’s the last time I’m inviting Jeremy Paxman to lunch.’