Reuters Accused in Web Privacy Case

A small Swedish company posted its quarterly earnings on its website, without any password protection, but without publicizing the URL. A Reuters reporter guessed the URL and found the report before it was supposed to be released. Now the reporter is being sued for Hacking a URL, which is a fundamental navigation technique that many users employ every day. —Reuters Accused in Web Privacy CaseSalon)

Let’s go a little further into the grey area: a reporter for Wired guessed the password for Saddam Hussein’s e-mail account, and published a story about what he found there. Is this ethical?