WikiLeaks Accuses 'The Guardian' of Revealing Secret Passwords

Leon Neal/AFP/Getty Images

The online organization known for leaking information is angry with a British newspaper for doing some leaking of its own.

WikiLeaks, the online organization famous for leaking thousands of classified documents, is now accusing a newspaper, England's The Guardian, of leaking its own secret passwords. In an editorial published on the WikiLeaks site today, the group accuses the Guardian and its investigations editor David Leigh of publishing encryption passwords to WikiLeaks' online trove of unredacted U.S. State Department cables.

The editorial states: "Knowledge of the Guardian disclosure has spread privately over several months but reached critical mass last week. The unpublished WikiLeaks’ material includes over 100,000 classified unredacted cables that were being analyzed, in parts, by over 50 media and human rights organizations from around the world."

Previous WikiLeaks releases of diplomatic cables had been edited to remove certain identifying information of the people involved. The raw data in the archive in question had not been edited.

The secret passwords, which WikiLeaks had given to the Guardian in 2010, were published in in a book in February. The information was revealed through the recounting of a conversation between Leigh and WikiLeaks leader Julian Assange.

WikiLeaks says it is pursuing legal action against the Guardian and an unnamed individual in Germany who it claims was distributing the WikiLeaks passwords for monetary gain.

STORY: Rowan Joffe to write HBO's WikiLeaks movie

The Guardian has denied any wrongdoing. In a statement published today, the newspaper stated, "It's nonsense to suggest the Guardian's WikiLeaks book has compromised security in any way.

"Our book about WikiLeaks was published last February. It contained a password, but no details of the location of the files, and we were told it was a temporary password which would expire and be deleted in a matter of hours.

"It was a meaningless piece of information to anyone except the person(s) who created the database.

"No concerns were expressed when the book was published and if anyone at WikiLeaks had thought this compromised security they have had seven months to remove the files. That they didn't do so clearly shows the problem was not caused by the Guardian's book."

WikiLeaks says it contacted the U.S. State Department to warn them of the upcoming info leak, which has been distributed widely online now.

comments powered by Disqus