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Hackers Claim Breach of NATO Documents


A screen capture from the AnonymousIRC Twitter account, July 21, 2011

A screen capture from the AnonymousIRC Twitter account, July 21, 2011

Computer hackers are claiming they have breached a vast collection of NATO documents. They say the documents are so confidential that it would be "irresponsible" to publish most of them.

The group called "Anonymous" said Thursday that it has about 1 gigabyte of information, and posted links to two documents that were labeled "NATO Restricted."

The hackers posted one message on the Twitter networking site, saying, "Hi NATO. Yes, we haz [sic] more of your delicious data." It suggested more documents would be released in a few days.

A NATO spokesman said the alliance was aware that the Anonymous group had released what it claimed were classified documents from 2007 and 2008. NATO said it was investigating the claims and said it strongly condemns the leak of any classified documents.

NATO said the release of such documents "can potentially endanger" its allies, military forces and people who live in NATO-member countries.

The purported breach of NATO files comes two days after authorities in the United States, Britain and the Netherlands arrested 21 people they accused of mounting coordinated cyber-attacks against companies and organizations. The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation said the suspects were affiliated with the Anonymous hacking group and attacked the online payment site called Paypal.

The FBI said Paypal was targeted because it had suspended the account of the controversial WikiLeaks website. WikiLeaks, founded by Australian Julian Assange, has released thousands of secret diplomatic, military and political documents, including from U.S. missions overseas.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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