And breaches to Australian government’s new data retention laws barely rated.
WikiLeaks has unloaded another giant batch of documents, these ones concerning the techniques the US Central Intelligence Agency uses to spy on anybody and everybody in its covert surveillance operations around the globe.
The 8,761 leaked documents are codenamed ‘Year Zero’, which WikiLeaks says are from an “isolated, high-security network situated inside the CIA's Center for Cyber Intelligence” in Langley, Virginia.
It says they are but the first tranche of a much larger series of leaked documents, which it has branded ‘Vault 7’. Its description of the documents’ source throws some light onto the way WikiLeaks operates:
“Recently, the CIA lost control of the majority of its hacking arsenal including malware, viruses, trojans, weaponised ‘zero day’ exploits, malware remote control systems and associated documentation,” said WikiLeaks in a statement.
“This extraordinary collection, which amounts to more than several hundred million lines of code, gives its possessor the entire hacking capacity of the CIA. The archive appears to have been circulated among former US government hackers and contractors in an unauthorised manner, one of whom has provided WikiLeaks with portions of the archive.”
New leaks 'just the beginning'
WikiLeaks says these Year Zero leaks are just the beginning, and many more documents to come will show the full scope and direction of the CIA's global covert hacking program, its malware arsenal and dozens of attacks against a wide range of US and European company products.
These, include the Apple's iPhone, Google Android and Microsoft Windows. It says even Samsung smart TVs can be turned into covert microphones for surveillance purposes.
The leaks come at a time when US President Trump is virtually at war with his security agencies, accusing them of leaking information designed to harm him. The leak of this latest group of documents is likely to further embarrass the CIA, which can rightly be accused of not even being able to keep its own secrets secret.
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