'WikiLeaks accidentally leaks cables that name sources'

German media reports file with original cables that name informants and intelligence agents, including Israelis, floating on Internet.

August 30, 2011 05:22
1 minute read.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange [file]

Julian Assange smug 311 REUTERS. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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WikiLeaks has accidentally released original, unedited cables which have revealed the names of confidential informants and suspected intelligence agents, including Mossad agents, according to German media reports.

Der Spiegel reported on Monday that a conflict between WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and former WikiLeaks employee Daniel Domscheit- Berg led to the accidental leak. German-language weekly Der Freitag first reported the leak, mentioning specifically that agents and informants from Israel, Jordan, Iran and Afghanistan may have been compromised.

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According to the report, an encrypted file has been circulating on the Internet since the beginning of the year which contains the full collection of some 250,000 US State Department cables obtained by the whistle-blower organization last year.

WikiLeaks began making select cables from the collection public in November 2010, but had been editing them to protect sources. The file floating around on the Internet containing all 250,000 cables, however, is entirely unedited, according to the report.

The password-protected file had been hidden on a WikiLeaks server. Assange had given the password to an external contact, according to Der Spiegel.

WikiLeaks supporters – attempting to create a public archive of cables which had already been released through various news outlets – unwittingly released the hidden, encrypted file as well. In the spring of 2011, Assange’s external contact made the password to the file public.

Domscheit-Berg’s rival organization Open- Leaks has now drawn attention to the fact that both the file and the password have been available on the Internet for months. Domscheit- Berg’s OpenLeaks colleagues said the slip-up proved his contention that data in the hands of WikiLeaks was not secure.

WikiLeaks denied the report by way of its Twitter account, saying, “There has been no ‘leak at WikiLeaks.’ The issue relates to a mainstream media partner and a malicious individual.”

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