If you haven’t heard about WikiLeaks, then it is time you learnt about this new age whistle blowing organization. Headed by its founder Julian Assange, it started as an online drive where anonymous leaked information about organizations was posted.
WikiLeaks became rather notorious after their cablegate WikiLeaks in 2010. It released a whopping 250,000 diplomatic cables of the U.S Embassy which was the largest at that time. It had everything from the planned attack on Iran to where all the American secret cables are stored. Since then everyone became privacy sensitive and new softwares like HBSwiss come out with guaranteeing that your personal information won’t be sold.
Leaks of 2016
The year 2016 was full of revelation by WikiLeaks which included the dirty secrets behind the Clinton campaign and many other political secrets of the US. It also revealed a lot of secretive trade deals and private communications between various global leaders. The notoriety of the whistle blowing organization has been steadily increasing since their cablegate leaks in 2010.
The essence of the Clinton campaign WikiLeaks
Though a number of documents were released in the 12 month period the most important one was the documents relating to Clinton’s campaign. It included about 50,000 emails from Hillary Clinton and John Podesta. It also had another 27000 emails from the DNC (Democratic National Committee). The conclusion from all of these emails was that the DNC favored Clinton and this revelation actually worked against Clinton during the elections.
But before the whistle blowing organization could even step into the next year, they were already building up the hype. A tweet from the organization’s twitter account just days into the year 2017 stated ‘If you thought 2016 was a big WikiLeaks year, 2017 will blow you away’. Just a few months into the year, we must say that they are living up to that hype.
The biggest revelation this year has been the CIA documents that WikiLeaks revealed in March. According to these document, the CIA uses hacking tools to break into Apple phones, Android phones and other communication devices. This leak is popularly known as Vault 7.
It goes on to show that the CIA and the British intelligence have tied together to hack into smart televisions to use them as mass surveillance tools. Some of the revelations in Vault 7 are as follows
- CIA uses tools to hack into smartphones and computer software
- A program called ‘Weeping Angel’ could be used to hack the Samsung F8000 smart TV. This would allow it to be used for listening to conversations by making it appear as if the device was switched off.
Though the CIA has not accepted that these WikiLeak documents are authentic, WikiLeaks has already offered to help the Silicon Valley companies. It says that they have the leaked codes too from CIA which were used to hack the devices of these technology-based companies.
These can be used by companies like Apple and Google to fix the bugs in their software and keep others from hacking into their devices. But because WikiLeaks has almost become an anti-government organization of sorts these Silicon Valley companies are reluctant to ask for help. It will only make it look like they have a tie-up with a whistle blowing organization.
While the Silicon Valley companies find a way to fix the bugs in their devices, WikiLeaks might be onto revealing something more controversial. Only time will tell.