Hackers Release Swedish Government Email Details in Pirate Bay Retaliation

Swedish authorities seized servers used by the file sharing site in a raid last week

Hackers have released the emails and passwords of employees of the Swedish government in retaliation for Sweden's crackdown on the popular file-sharing site.

Last week, Swedish authorities staged a raid, in which they seized computer servers they said were used by The Pirate Bay as part of an operation targeting “crimes related to intellectual property rights.” The Pirate Bay, one of the most popular file-sharing sites on the Internet, went offline and has not yet returned, although mirror and copy-cat sites have popped up in the wake of the raid.

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A group calling itself HagashTeam 2015 posted a list of email addresses and passwords for Swedish government employees. The post said the release was “in retaliation for The Pirate Bay!” The post also included individual emails from several other countries, including India, Mexico, Israel and Brazil.

The post, which ends with the cheerful “Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year to all!” also thanks the hacktivist group Anonymous, though it is not immediately clear if Anonymous was directly involved in the hack. The HagashTeam has been active since 2013. Its Twitter feed is dominated by political postings. A post dated Nov. 30, says the “reasoning behind our recent work is (to)... embarrass corporations/corrupt organizations, as well as governments.”

This isn't the online hack attack connected to The Pirate Bay raid. Swedish Internet group Telia confirmed it has been targeted by another group, a hacking collective called Lizard Squad, in a move designed to slow or disrupt Telia's online service.

The Pirate Bay has been under fire by governments and copyright holders for years but authorities have upped the pressure recently. Courts in France and the U.K. have ordered Internet service providers to block access to the site and Google has taken steps to remove apps liked to The Pirate Bay from its online app store.

Twitter: @sroxborough