Computer hackers have leaked an online database which they say contains the personal information of nearly 50 million Turkish citizens.
The information includes names, national ID numbers, addresses, birth dates and parents' names. It specifically highlights the personal data of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu.
The Associated Press was able to partially verify the information by cross-referencing 10 non-public Turkish ID numbers against information contained in the database. Eight ID numbers were a match.
The hackers posted a message with the leak: "Who would have imagined that backwards ideologies, cronyism and rising religious extremism in Turkey would lead to a crumbling and vulnerable technical infrastructure?''
They also posted "lessons to learn" for Turkey on Internet security, including "bit shifting isn't encryption," and "putting a hard-coded password on the UI [user interface] hardly does anything for security."
The database appears to be have been posted using servers in Romania.
If the hack is verified as authentic, it would be one of the largest leaks of public information and could make much of Turkey's population vulnerable to identity theft.
Last year, the U.S. government said that hackers gained access to the personal information of more than 20 million federal employees. U.S. officials have blamed a Chinese spy operation for the data breech.