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WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
(/ˈwɪkiliːks/) is an international non-profit organisation that publishes secret information, news leaks,[5] and classified media provided by anonymous sources.[6] Its website, initiated in 2006 in Iceland
Iceland
by the organisation Sunshine Press,[7] claims a database of 10 million documents in 10 years since its launch.[8] Julian Assange, an Australian Internet activist, is generally described as its founder, editor-in-chief, and director.[9] The group has released a number of prominent document dumps. Early releases included documentation of equipment expenditures and holdings in the Afghanistan war and a report informing a corruption investigation in Kenya.[10] In April 2010, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
released the so-called Collateral Murder footage from the 12 July 2007 Baghdad airstrike in which Iraqi journalists were among those killed. Other releases in 2010 included the Afghan War Diary and the "Iraq War Logs". The latter allowed the mapping of 109,032 deaths in "significant" attacks by insurgents in Iraq that had been reported to Multi-National Force – Iraq, including about 15,000 that had not been previously published.[11][12] In 2010, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
also released the US State Department diplomatic "cables", classified cables that had been sent to the US State Department. In April 2011, WikiLeaks began publishing 779 secret files relating to prisoners detained in the Guantanamo Bay detention camp.[13] During the 2016 US presidential election campaign, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
released emails and other documents from the Democratic National Committee
Democratic National Committee
and from Hillary Clinton's campaign manager, John Podesta.[14] These releases caused significant harm to the Clinton campaign,[citation needed] and have been attributed as potential contributing factors to her loss.[15] The U.S. intelligence community expressed "high confidence" that the leaked emails had been hacked by Russia and supplied to WikiLeaks, while WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
denied their source was Russia or any other state.[16] During the campaign, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
promoted conspiracy theories about Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton
and the Democratic Party.[17][18][19] In private conversations from November 2015 that were later leaked, Julian Assange
Julian Assange
expressed a preference for a GOP victory in the 2016 election, explaining that "Dems+Media+liberals woudl [sic] then form a block to reign [sic] in their worst qualities. With Hillary in charge, GOP will be pushing for her worst qualities, dems+media+neoliberals will be mute."[20] In secret correspondence with the Trump campaign on election day (November 8, 2016), WikiLeaks encouraged the Trump campaign to contest the election results in case they lost.[21] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has drawn criticism for its absence of whistleblowing on or criticism of Russia, and for criticising the Panama Papers' exposé of businesses and individuals with offshore bank accounts.[22][23] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has also been criticised for inadequately curating its content and violating the personal privacy of individuals. WikiLeaks has, for instance, revealed Social Security numbers, medical information, credit card numbers, details of suicide attempts, and other sensitive personal information.[24][25][26][27]

Contents

1 History

1.1 Staff, name and founding 1.2 Purpose

2 Administration 3 Legal status

3.1 Potential criminal prosecution

4 Financing 5 Leaks

5.1 2006–08 5.2 2009 5.3 2010 5.4 Diplomatic cables release 5.5 2011–2015 5.6 2016 5.7 2017 5.8 Claims of upcoming leaks

6 Authenticity 7 Promotion of conspiracy theories

7.1 Murder of Seth Rich 7.2 Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton

8 Controversy

8.1 Allegations of anti-Americanism 8.2 Allegations of anti-Clinton and pro-Trump bias

8.2.1 Correspondence between WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
and Donald Trump
Donald Trump
Jr.

8.3 Allegations of Russian influence 8.4 Allegations of anti-semitism 8.5 Exaggerated and misleading descriptions of the contents of leaks 8.6 Inadequate curation and violations of personal privacy 8.7 Internal conflicts and lack of transparency

8.7.1 Non-disclosure agreements

9 Reception

9.1 Spin-offs 9.2 In popular culture

10 See also 11 References 12 External links

History Staff, name and founding

Julian Assange
Julian Assange
was one of the early members of the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
staff and is credited as the website's founder.

The wikileaks.org domain name was registered on 4 October 2006.[4] The website was established and published its first document in December 2006.[28][29] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
is usually represented in public by Julian Assange, who has been described as "the heart and soul of this organisation, its founder, philosopher, spokesperson, original coder, organiser, financier, and all the rest".[30][31] Sarah Harrison, Kristinn Hrafnsson
Kristinn Hrafnsson
and Joseph Farrell are the only other publicly known and acknowledged associates of Assange.[32] Harrison is also a member of Sunshine Press Productions along with Assange and Ingi Ragnar Ingason.[33][34] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
was originally established with a "wiki" communal publication method, which was terminated by May 2010.[35] Original volunteers and founders were once described as a mixture of Asian dissidents, journalists, mathematicians, and start-up company technologists from the United States, Taiwan, Europe, Australia, and South Africa.[36] As of June 2009[update], the website had more than 1,200 registered volunteers.[36][37][38] Despite some popular confusion, related to the fact both sites use the "wiki" name and website design template, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
and are not affiliated.[39] Wikia, a for-profit corporation affiliated loosely with the Wikimedia Foundation, purchased several WikiLeaks-related domain names as a "protective brand measure" in 2007.[40] Purpose According to the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
website, its goal is "to bring important news and information to the public... One of our most important activities is to publish original source material alongside our news stories so readers and historians alike can see evidence of the truth." Another of the organisation's goals is to ensure that journalists and whistleblowers are not prosecuted for emailing sensitive or classified documents. The online "drop box" is described by the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
website as "an innovative, secure and anonymous way for sources to leak information to [WikiLeaks] journalists".[41] Some describe WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
as a media or journalistic organisation. For example, in a 2013 resolution, the International Federation of Journalists, a trade union of journalists, called WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
a "new breed of media organisation" that "offers important opportunities for media organisations."[42] Harvard professor Yochai Benkler
Yochai Benkler
has praised WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
as a new form of journalistic enterprise,[43] testifying at the court-martial of Chelsea Manning
Chelsea Manning
(then Bradley Manning) that " WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
did serve a particular journalistic function" although "It's a hard line to draw."[44] Others do not consider WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
to be journalistic in nature. Media ethicist Kelly McBride of the Poynter Institute for Media Studies wrote in 2011 that "Wikileaks might grow into a journalist endeavor. But it's not there yet."[45] Bill Keller of The New York Times
The New York Times
considers WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
to be a "complicated source" rather than a journalistic partner.[45] Prominent First Amendment lawyer Floyd Abrams
Floyd Abrams
writes that Wikileaks is not a journalistic group, but instead "an organization of political activists; ... a source for journalists; and ... a conduit of leaked information to the press and the public."[46] Noting Assange's statements that he and his colleagues read only a small fraction of information before deciding to publish it, Abrams writes that "No journalistic entity I have ever heard of—none—simply releases to the world an elephantine amount of material it has not read."[46] Administration According to a January 2010 interview, the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
team then consisted of five people working full-time and about 800 people who worked occasionally, none of whom were compensated.[47] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
does not have any official headquarters. In November 2010 the WikiLeaks-endorsed[48] news and activism site WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
Central was initiated and was administrated by editor Heather Marsh
Heather Marsh
who oversaw 70+ writers and volunteers.[49] She resigned on 8 March 2012.[50] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
describes itself as "an uncensorable system for untraceable mass document leaking".[51] The website is available on multiple servers, different domain names and has an official Darkweb
Darkweb
version (available on the Tor Network) as a result of a number of denial-of-service attacks and its elimination from different Domain Name System (DNS) providers.[52][53] Until August 2010, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
was hosted by PRQ, a Sweden-based company providing "highly secure, no-questions-asked hosting services". PRQ is said to have "almost no information about its clientele and maintains few if any of its own logs".[54] Currently, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
is hosted mainly by the Swedish Internet service provider Bahnhof
Bahnhof
in the Pionen facility, a former nuclear bunker in Sweden.[55][56] Other servers are spread around the world with the main server located in Sweden.[57] Julian Assange
Julian Assange
has said that the servers are located in Sweden (and the other countries) "specifically because those nations offer legal protection to the disclosures made on the site". He talks about the Swedish constitution, which gives the information providers total legal protection.[57] It is forbidden according to Swedish law for any administrative authority to make inquiries about the sources of any type of newspaper.[58] These laws, and the hosting by PRQ, make it difficult for any authorities to eliminate WikiLeaks; they place an onus of proof upon any complainant whose suit would circumscribe WikiLeaks' liberty, e.g. its rights to exercise free speech online. Furthermore, " WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
maintains its own servers at undisclosed locations, keeps no logs and uses military-grade encryption to protect sources and other confidential information." Such arrangements have been called "bulletproof hosting".[54][59] After the site became the target of a denial-of-service attack on its old servers, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
moved its website to Amazon's servers.[60] Later, however, the website was "ousted" from the Amazon servers.[60] In a public statement, Amazon said that WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
was not following its terms of service. The company further explained, "There were several parts they were violating. For example, our terms of service state that 'you represent and warrant that you own or otherwise control all of the rights to the content... that use of the content you supply does not violate this policy and will not cause injury to any person or entity.' It's clear that WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
doesn't own or otherwise control all the rights to this classified content."[61] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
was then moved to servers at OVH, a private web-hosting service in France.[62] After criticism from the French government, the company sought two court rulings about the legality of hosting WikiLeaks. While the court in Lille
Lille
immediately refused to force OVH to deactivate the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
website, the court in Paris stated it would need more time to examine the complex technical issue.[63][64] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
had been using EveryDNS's Domain Name System
Domain Name System
(DNS). Distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks against WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
hurt DNS quality of service for other EveryDNS customers; as a result, the company dropped WikiLeaks. Supporters of WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
waged verbal and DDoS
DDoS
attacks on EveryDNS. Because of a typographical error in blogs mistaking EveryDNS for competitor EasyDNS, that sizeable Internet backlash hit EasyDNS. Despite that, EasyDNS (upon request of a customer who was setting up new WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
hosting) began providing WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
with DNS service on "two 'battle hardened' servers" to protect quality of service for its other customers.[65] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
restructured its process for contributions after its first document leaks did not gain much attention. Assange stated this was part of an attempt to take the voluntary efforts typically seen in "Wiki" projects, and "redirect it to...material that has real potential for change."[66] Some sympathisers were unhappy[citation needed] when WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
ended a community-based wiki format in favour of a more centralised organisation. The "about" page originally read:[67]

To the user, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
will look very much like. Anybody can post to it, anybody can edit it. No technical knowledge is required. Leakers can post documents anonymously and untraceably. Users can publicly discuss documents and analyse their credibility and veracity. Users can discuss interpretations and context and collaboratively formulate collective publications. Users can read and write explanatory articles on leaks along with background material and context. The political relevance of documents and their verisimilitude will be revealed by a cast of thousands.

However, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
established an editorial policy that accepted only documents that were "of political, diplomatic, historical or ethical interest" (and excluded "material that is already publicly available").[68] This coincided with early criticism that having no editorial policy would drive out good material with spam and promote "automated or indiscriminate publication of confidential records".[69] The original FAQ is no longer in effect, and no one can post or edit documents on WikiLeaks. Now, submissions to WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
are reviewed by anonymous WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
reviewers, and documents that do not meet the editorial criteria are rejected. By 2008, the revised FAQ stated that "Anybody can post comments to it. [...] Users can publicly discuss documents and analyse their credibility and veracity."[70] After the 2010 reorganisation, posting new comments on leaks was no longer possible.[35] Legal status Further information: Reception of WikiLeaks The legal status of WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
is complex. Assange considers WikiLeaks a protection intermediary. Rather than leaking directly to the press, and fearing exposure and retribution, whistleblowers can leak to WikiLeaks, which then leaks to the press for them.[71] Its servers are located throughout Europe and are accessible from any uncensored web connection. The group located its headquarters in Sweden because it has one of the world's strongest laws to protect confidential source-journalist relationships.[72][73] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has stated it does not solicit any information.[72] However, Assange used his speech during the Hack in the Box conference in Malaysia to ask the crowd of hackers and security researchers to help find documents on its "Most Wanted Leaks of 2009" list.[74] Potential criminal prosecution The US Justice Department began a criminal investigation of WikiLeaks and Julian Assange
Julian Assange
soon after the leak of diplomatic cables began.[75][76] Attorney General Eric Holder
Eric Holder
affirmed the investigation was "not saber-rattling", but was "an active, ongoing criminal investigation".[76] The Washington Post
The Washington Post
reported that the department was considering charges under the Espionage Act of 1917, an action which former prosecutors characterised as "difficult" because of First Amendment protections for the press.[75][77] Several Supreme Court cases (e.g. Bartnicki v. Vopper) have established previously that the American Constitution protects the re-publication of illegally gained information provided the publishers did not themselves violate any laws in acquiring it.[78] Federal prosecutors have also considered prosecuting Assange for trafficking in stolen government property, but since the diplomatic cables are intellectual rather than physical property, that method is also difficult.[79] Any prosecution of Assange would require extraditing him to the United States, a procedure made more complicated and potentially delayed by any preceding extradition to Sweden.[80] One of Assange's lawyers, however, says they are fighting extradition to Sweden because it might result in his extradition to the United States.[81] Assange's attorney, Mark Stephens, has "heard from Swedish authorities there has been a secretly empanelled grand jury in Alexandria [Virginia]" meeting to consider criminal charges for the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
case.[82] In Australia, the government and the Australian Federal Police
Australian Federal Police
have not stated what Australian laws may have been violated by WikiLeaks, but then Prime Minister Julia Gillard
Julia Gillard
has stated that the foundation of WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
and the stealing of classified documents from the United States administration is illegal in foreign countries.[83] Gillard later clarified her statement as referring to "the original theft of the material by a junior U.S. serviceman rather than any action by Mr Assange."[84] Spencer Zifcak, president of Liberty Victoria, an Australian civil liberties group, notes that without a charge or a trial completed, it is inappropriate to state that WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
is guilty of illegal activities.[85] On threats by various governments towards Julian Assange, legal expert Ben Saul argues that Assange is the target of a global smear campaign to demonise him as a criminal or as a terrorist, without any legal basis.[86][87] The US Center for Constitutional Rights
Center for Constitutional Rights
has issued a statement emphasising its alarm at the "multiple examples of legal overreach and irregularities" in his arrest.[88] Financing WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
is a self-described not-for-profit organisation, funded largely by volunteers, and it is dependent on public donations. Its main financing methods include conventional bank transfers and online payment systems. According to Assange, WikiLeaks' lawyers often work pro bono. Assange has said that in some cases legal aid has been donated by media organisations such as the Associated Press, the Los Angeles Times, and the National Newspaper Publishers Association.[47] Assange said in 2010 that WikiLeaks' only revenue consists of donations, but it has considered other options including auctioning early access to documents.[47] During September 2011, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
began auctioning items on eBay to raise funds, and Assange told an audience at Sydney's Festival of Dangerous Ideas that the organisation might not be able to survive.[citation needed] On 24 December 2009, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
announced that it was experiencing a shortage of funds[citation needed] and suspended all access to its website except for a form to submit new material.[89] Material that was previously published was no longer available, although some could still be accessed on unofficial mirror websites.[90] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
stated on its website that it would resume full operation once the operational costs were paid.[89] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
saw this as a kind of work stoppage "to ensure that everyone who is involved stops normal work and actually spends time raising revenue".[47] While the organisation initially planned for funds to be secured by 6 January 2010,[citation needed] it was not until 3 February 2010 that WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
announced that its minimum fundraising goal had been achieved.[citation needed] The Wau Holland Foundation helps to process donations to WikiLeaks. In July 2010, the Foundation stated that WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
was not receiving any money for personnel costs, only for hardware, travelling and bandwidth.[91] An article in TechEye stated:

As a charity accountable under German law, donations for WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
can be made to the foundation. Funds are held in escrow and are given to WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
after the whistleblower website files an application containing a statement with proof of payment. The foundation does not pay any sort of salary nor give any renumeration [sic] to WikiLeaks' personnel, corroborating the statement of the site's former German representative Daniel Schmitt [real name Daniel Domscheit-Berg][92] on national television that all personnel works voluntarily, even its speakers.[91]

However, in December 2010 the Wau Holland Foundation stated that 4 permanent employees, including Julian Assange, had begun to receive salaries.[93] In 2010, Assange said the organisation was registered as a library in Australia, a foundation in France, and a newspaper in Sweden, and that it also used two United States-based non-profit 501c3 organisations for funding purposes.[94] On 22 January 2010, the Internet payment intermediary PayPal
PayPal
suspended WikiLeaks' donation account and froze its assets. WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
said that this had happened before, and was done for "no obvious reason".[citation needed] The account was restored on 25 January 2010.[citation needed] On 18 May 2010, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
announced that its website and archive were operational again.[citation needed] In June 2010, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
was a finalist for a grant of more than half a million dollars from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation,[29] but did not make the final approval.[95] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
commented via Twitter, " WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
was highest rated project in the Knight challenge, strongly recommended to the board but gets no funding. Go figure."[96] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
said that the Knight foundation announced the award to "'12 Grantees who will impact future of news' – but not WikiLeaks" and questioned whether Knight foundation was "really looking for impact".[95] A spokesman of the Knight Foundation disputed parts of WikiLeaks' statement, saying " WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
was not recommended by Knight staff to the board."[96] However, he declined to say whether WikiLeaks was the project rated highest by the Knight advisory panel, which consists of non-staffers, among them journalist Jennifer 8. Lee, who has done PR work for WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
with the press and on social networking websites.[96] During 2010, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
received €635,772.73 in PayPal
PayPal
donations, less €30,000 in PayPal
PayPal
fees, and €695,925.46 in bank transfers. €500,988.89 of the sum was received in the month of December, primarily as bank transfers as PayPal
PayPal
suspended payments 4 December. €298,057.38 of the remainder was received in April.[97] The Wau Holland Foundation, one of the WikiLeaks' main funding channels, stated that they received more than €900,000 in public donations between October 2009 and December 2010, of which €370,000 has been passed on to WikiLeaks. Hendrik Fulda, vice-president of the Wau Holland Foundation, mentioned that the Foundation had been receiving twice as many donations through PayPal
PayPal
as through normal banks, before PayPal's decision to suspend WikiLeaks' account. He also noted that every new WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
publication brought "a wave of support", and that donations were strongest in the weeks after WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
started publishing leaked diplomatic cables.[98][99] The Icelandic judiciary decided that Valitor (a company related to Visa and MasterCard) was violating the law when it prevented donation to the site by credit card. A justice ruled that the donations will be allowed to return to the site after 14 days or they would be fined in the amount of US$6,000 a day.[100] Leaks Main article: Information published by WikiLeaks 2006–08 WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
posted its first document in December 2006, a decision to assassinate government officials signed by Sheikh Hassan Dahir Aweys.[29] In August 2007, the UK newspaper The Guardian
The Guardian
published a story about corruption by the family of the former Kenyan leader Daniel arap Moi
Daniel arap Moi
based on information provided via WikiLeaks.[101] In November 2007, a March 2003 copy of Standard Operating Procedures for Camp Delta detailing the protocol of the US Army at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp was released.[102][103] The document revealed that some prisoners were off-limits to the International Committee of the Red Cross, something that the US military had in the past denied repeatedly.[104] In February 2008, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
released allegations of illegal activities at the Cayman Islands
Cayman Islands
branch of the Swiss Bank Julius Baer, which resulted in the bank suing WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
and obtaining an injunction which temporarily suspended the operation of wikileaks.org.[105] The California judge had the service provider of WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
block the site's domain (wikileaks.org) on 18 February 2008, although the bank only wanted the documents to be removed but WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
had failed to name a contact. The website was instantly mirrored by supporters, and later that month the judge overturned his previous decision citing First Amendment concerns and questions about legal jurisdiction.[106][107] In March 2008, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
published what they referred to as "the collected secret 'bibles' of Scientology", and three days later received letters threatening to sue them for breach of copyright.[108] In September 2008, during the 2008 United States presidential election campaigns, the contents of a Yahoo account belonging to Sarah Palin
Sarah Palin
(the running mate of Republican presidential nominee John McCain) were posted on WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
after being hacked into by members of a group known as Anonymous.[109][110] In November 2008, the membership list of the far-right British National Party was posted to WikiLeaks, after appearing briefly on a weblog.[111] A year later, in October 2009, another list of BNP members was leaked.[112] 2009 In January 2009, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
released 86 telephone intercept recordings of Peruvian politicians and businessmen involved in the 2008 Peru oil scandal.[113] During February, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
released 6,780 Congressional Research Service reports[114] followed in March by a list of contributors to the Norm Coleman
Norm Coleman
senatorial campaign[115][116] and a set of documents belonging to Barclays Bank
Barclays Bank
that had been ordered removed from the website of The Guardian.[117] In July, it released a report relating to a serious nuclear accident that had occurred at the Iranian Natanz nuclear facility in 2009.[118] Later media reports have suggested that the accident was related to the Stuxnet
Stuxnet
computer worm.[119][120] In September, internal documents from Kaupthing Bank were leaked, from shortly before the collapse of Iceland's banking sector, which caused the 2008–2012 Icelandic financial crisis. The document shows that suspiciously large sums of money were loaned to various owners of the bank, and large debts written off.[121] In October, Joint Services Protocol 440, a British document advising the security services on how to avoid documents being leaked, was published by WikiLeaks.[122] Later that month, it announced that a super-injunction was being used by the commodities company Trafigura to stop The Guardian
The Guardian
(London) from reporting on a leaked internal document regarding a toxic dumping incident in Côte d'Ivoire.[123][124] In November, it hosted copies of e-mail correspondence between climate scientists, although they were not leaked originally to WikiLeaks.[125][126] It also released 570,000 intercepts of pager messages sent on the day of the 11 September attacks.[127][128][129] During 2008 and 2009, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
published the alleged lists of forbidden or illegal web addresses for Australia, Denmark and Thailand. These were originally created to prevent access to child pornography and terrorism, but the leaks revealed that other sites featuring unrelated subjects were also listed.[130][131][132] 2010 Main articles: Iraq War documents leak and Afghan War documents leak

Gun camera footage of the airstrike of 12 July 2007 in Baghdad, showing the slaying of Namir Noor-Eldeen
Namir Noor-Eldeen
and a dozen other civilians by a US helicopter.

In mid-February 2010, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
received a leaked diplomatic cable from the United States
United States
Embassy in Reykjavik relating to the Icesave scandal, which they published on 18 February.[133] The cable, known as Reykjavik 13, was the first of the classified documents WikiLeaks published among those allegedly provided to them by United States
United States
Army Private Chelsea Manning
Chelsea Manning
(then known as Bradley). In March 2010, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
released a secret 32-page US Department of Defense Counterintelligence
Counterintelligence
Analysis Report written in March 2008 discussing the leaking of material by WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
and how it could be deterred.[134][135][136] In April, a classified video of the 12 July 2007 Baghdad airstrike was released, showing two Reuters
Reuters
employees being fired at, after the pilots mistakenly thought the men were carrying weapons, which were in fact cameras.[137] After the mistaken killing, the video shows US forces firing on a family van that stopped to pick up the bodies.[138] In the week after the release, "wikileaks" was the search term with the most significant growth worldwide during the last seven days as measured by Google
Google
Insights.[139] In June 2010, Manning was arrested after alleged chat logs were given to United States authorities by former hacker Adrian Lamo, in whom she had confided. Manning reportedly told Lamo she had leaked the "Collateral Murder" video, in addition to a video of the Granai airstrike and about 260,000 diplomatic cables, to WikiLeaks.[140] In July, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
released 92,000 documents related to the war in Afghanistan between 2004 and the end of 2009 to the publications The Guardian, The New York Times
The New York Times
and Der Spiegel. The documents detail individual incidents including "friendly fire" and civilian casualties.[141] About 15,000 of the 92,000 documents have not yet been released by WikiLeaks, as the group is currently reviewing the documents to remove some of the sources of the information. WikiLeaks asked the Pentagon and human-rights groups to help remove names from the documents to reduce the potential harm caused by their release, but did not receive assistance.[142] After the Love Parade stampede
Love Parade stampede
in Duisburg, Germany, on 24 July 2010, a local resident published internal documents of the city administration regarding the planning of Love Parade. The city government reacted by securing a court order on 16 August forcing the removal of the documents from the website on which it was hosted.[143] On 20 August 2010, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
released a publication entitled Loveparade 2010 Duisburg
Duisburg
planning documents, 2007–2010, which comprised 43 internal documents regarding the Love Parade 2010.[144][145] After the leak of information concerning the Afghan War, in October 2010, around 400,000 documents relating to the Iraq War
Iraq War
were released. The BBC
BBC
quoted the US Department of Defense referring to the Iraq War Logs as "the largest leak of classified documents in its history". Media coverage of the leaked documents emphasised claims that the US government had ignored reports of torture by the Iraqi authorities during the period after the 2003 war.[146] On 29 July 2010 WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
added an "Insurance file" to the Afghan War Diary page. The file is AES encrypted.[147][citation needed] There has been speculation that it was intended to serve as insurance in case the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
website or its spokesman Julian Assange
Julian Assange
are incapacitated, upon which the passphrase could be published.[148][149] After the first few days' release of the US diplomatic cables starting 28 November 2010, the US television broadcasting company CBS
CBS
predicted that "If anything happens to Assange or the website, a key will go out to unlock the files. There would then be no way to stop the information from spreading like wildfire because so many people already have copies."[150] CBS
CBS
correspondent Declan McCullagh stated, "What most folks are speculating is that the insurance file contains unreleased information that would be especially embarrassing to the US government if it were released."[150] Diplomatic cables release Main articles: United States
United States
diplomatic cables leak, contents, and reactions On 28 November 2010, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
and five major newspapers from Spain (El País), France (Le Monde), Germany (Der Spiegel), the United Kingdom (The Guardian), and the United States
United States
(The New York Times) started simultaneously to publish the first 220 of 251,287 leaked documents labelled confidential – but not top-secret – and dated from 28 December 1966 to 28 February 2010.[151][152] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
planned to release the entirety of the cables in phases over several months.[needs update][152]

WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
supporters protest in front of the British Embassy in Madrid, 11 December 2010

The contents of the diplomatic cables include numerous unguarded comments and revelations regarding: critiques and praises about the host countries of various United States
United States
embassies; political manoeuvring regarding climate change; discussion and resolutions towards ending ongoing tension in the Middle East; efforts and resistance towards nuclear disarmament; actions in the War on Terror; assessments of other threats around the world; dealings between various countries; United States
United States
intelligence and counterintelligence efforts; and other diplomatic actions. Reactions to the United States diplomatic cables leak varied. On 14 December 2010 the United States Department of Justice issued a subpoena directing Twitter
Twitter
to provide information for accounts registered to or associated with WikiLeaks.[153] Twitter
Twitter
decided to notify its users.[154] The overthrow of the presidency in Tunisia of 2011 has been attributed partly to reaction against the corruption revealed by leaked cables.[155][156][157] On 1 September 2011, it became public that an encrypted version of WikiLeaks' huge archive of unredacted US State Department cables had been available via BitTorrent
BitTorrent
for months and that the decryption key (similar to a password) was available to those who knew where to find it.[158][159] Guardian newspaper editor David Leigh had just published the decryption key in his book, so the files were now publicly available to anyone. Rather than let malicious actors publish selected data, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
decided to publish the entire, unredacted archive in searchable form on its website.[citation needed] 2011–2015 Main articles: Guantanamo Bay files leak, Global Intelligence Files leak, Syria Files, and 2012–13 Stratfor
Stratfor
email leak In late April 2011, files related to the Guantanamo prison were released.[160] In December 2011, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
started to release the Spy Files.[161] On 27 February 2012, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
began publishing more than five million emails from the Texas-headquartered "global intelligence" company Stratfor.[162] On 5 July 2012, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
began publishing the Syria Files (emails from Syrian political figures 2006–2012).[163] On 25 October 2012, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
began publishing The Detainee Policies, files covering the rules and procedures for detainees in US military custody.[164] In April 2013 WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
published more than 1.7 million US diplomatic and intelligence documents from the 1970s, including the Kissinger cables.[165]

Placard in front of Embassy of Ecuador, London, 22 August 2012

In 2013, the organisation assisted Edward Snowden
Edward Snowden
(who is responsible for the 2013 mass surveillance disclosures) in leaving Hong Kong. Sarah Harrison, a WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
activist, accompanied Snowden on the flight. Scott Shane of The New York Times
The New York Times
stated that the WikiLeaks involvement "shows that despite its shoestring staff, limited fund-raising from a boycott by major financial firms, and defections prompted by Mr. Assange's personal troubles and abrasive style, it remains a force to be reckoned with on the global stage."[166] In September 2013, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
published "Spy Files 3", 250 documents from more than 90 surveillance companies.[167] On 13 November 2013, a draft of the Trans-Pacific Partnership's Intellectual Property Rights chapter was published by WikiLeaks.[168][169] On 10 June 2015, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
published the draft on the Trans-Pacific Partnership's Transparency for Healthcare Annex, along with each country's negotiating position.[170] On 19 June 2015 WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
began publishing The Saudi Cables: more than half a million cables and other documents from the Saudi Foreign Ministry that contain secret communications from various Saudi Embassies around the world.[171] On 23 June 2015, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
published documents under the name of "Espionnage Élysée", which showed that NSA spied on the French government, including but not limited to then President Francois Hollande and his predecessors Nicolas Sarkozy
Nicolas Sarkozy
and Jacques Chirac.[172] On 29 June 2015, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
published more NSA top secrets intercepts regarding France, detailing an economic espionage against French companies and associations.[173] In July 2015, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
published documents which showed that the NSA had tapped the telephones of many German federal ministries, including that of the Chancellor Angela Merkel, for years since the 1990s.[174] On 4 July 2015, WikiLeaks published documents which showed that 29 Brazilian government numbers were selected for secret espionage by the NSA. Among the targets there were also the President Dilma Rousseff, many assistants and advisors, her presidential jet and other key figures in the Brazilian government.[175] On 29 July 2015, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
published a top secret letter from the Trans-Pacific Partnership
Trans-Pacific Partnership
Agreement (TPP) Ministerial Meeting in December 2013 which illustrated the position of negotiating countries on "state-owned enterprises" (SOEs).[176] On 31 July 2015, WikiLeaks published secret intercepts and the related target list showing that the NSA spied on Japanese government, including the Cabinet and Japanese companies such as Mitsubishi
Mitsubishi
and Mitsui. The documents revealed that United States
United States
espionage against Japan concerned broad sections of communications about the US-Japan diplomatic relationship and Japan's position on climate change issues, other than an extensive monitoring of the Japanese economy.[177] On 21 October 2015 WikiLeaks published some of John O. Brennan's emails, including a draft security clearance application which contained personal information.[178] 2016 Main articles: 2016 Democratic National Committee
Democratic National Committee
email leak and Podesta emails On 4 July 2016, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
tweeted a link to a trove of emails sent or received by then-US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton
and released under the Freedom of Information Act.[179] The link contained 1258 emails sent from Clinton's personal mail server which were selected in terms of their relevance to the Iraq War
Iraq War
and were apparently timed to precede the release of the UK government's Iraq Inquiry
Iraq Inquiry
report.[180] On 19 July 2016, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
released 294,548 emails from Turkey's ruling Justice and Development party (AKP).[181] According to WikiLeaks, the material, which they claim to be the first batch from the "AKP Emails", was obtained a week before the attempted coup in the country and "is not connected, in any way, to the elements behind the attempted coup, or to a rival political party or state".[182] After WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
announced that they would release the emails, the organisation stayed for over 24 hours under a "sustained attack".[citation needed] Following the leak, the Turkish government ordered the site to be blocked nationwide.[183][184][185][186] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
had also tweeted a link to a database which contained sensitive information, such as the Turkish Identification Number, of approximately 50 million Turkish citizens, including nearly every female voter in Turkey.[187] This information first appeared online in April of the same year and was not in the files uploaded by WikiLeaks,[188] but in files archived by Michael Best, who then removed it when the personal data was discovered.[189][190][191] On 22 July 2016, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
released approximately 20,000 emails and 8,000 files sent from or received by Democratic National Committee (DNC) personnel.[192] Some of the emails contained personal information of donors, including home addresses and Social Security numbers.[193] Other emails appeared to criticise Bernie Sanders
Bernie Sanders
and showed apparent favouritism towards Clinton.[194][195] On 7 October 2016, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
started releasing series of emails and documents sent from or received by Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton
campaign manager John Podesta, including Hillary Clinton's paid speeches to banks.[196][197][198][199] According to a spokesman for the Clinton campaign, "By dribbling these out every day WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
is proving they are nothing but a propaganda arm of the Kremlin with a political agenda doing Vladimir Putin's dirty work to help elect Donald Trump."[200] The New York Times
The New York Times
reported that when asked, president Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Putin
replied that Russia was being falsely accused. "The hysteria is merely caused by the fact that somebody needs to divert the attention of the American people from the essence of what was exposed by the hackers."[201][202] On 17 October 2016 WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
announced that a "state party" had severed the Internet connection of Julian Assange
Julian Assange
at the Ecuadorian embassy. WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
blamed United States Secretary of State
United States Secretary of State
John Kerry of pressuring the Ecuadorian government in severing Assange's Internet, an accusation which the United States
United States
State Department denied.[203] The Ecuadorian government stated that it had "temporarily" severed Assange's Internet connection because of WikiLeaks' release of documents "impacting on the U.S. election campaign," although it also stated that this was not meant to prevent WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
from operating.[204] 2017 On 16 February 2017, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
released a purported report on CIA espionage orders (marked as NOFORN) for the 2012 French presidential election.[205][206][207] The order called for details of party funding, internal rivalries and future attitudes toward the United States. The Associated Press
Associated Press
noted that "the orders seemed to represent standard intelligence-gathering."[208] On 7 March 2017, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
started publishing content code-named "Vault 7". In a series of tweets and a Facebook Live + Periscope press conference, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
announced these documents contain CIA internal documentation of their "massive arsenal" of hacking tools including malware, viruses trojects, weaponised "zero day" exploits and remote control systems to name a few.[209][210][211] Leaked documents, dated from 2013–2016, detail the capabilities of the United States
United States
Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to perform electronic surveillance and cyber warfare, such as the ability to compromise cars, smart TVs,[211] web browsers (including Google
Google
Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, and Opera Software
Opera Software
ASA),[212][213][214] and the operating systems of most smartphones (including Apple's iOS and Google's Android), as well as other operating systems such as Microsoft Windows, macOS, and Linux.[215] On 5 May 2017, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
posted links to e-mails purported to be from Emmanuel Macron's campaign in the French 2017 presidential election.[216] The documents were first relayed on the 4chan forum (used by far-right American groups) and by pro-Trump Twitter
Twitter
accounts, and then by WikiLeaks, who indicated they did not author the leaks.[216][217] Experts have asserted that the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
Twitter account played a key role in publicising the leaks through the hashtag #MacronLeaks just some three-and-a-half hours after the first tweet with hashtag appeared.[218][219] The campaign stated that false documents were mixed in with real ones, and that "the ambition of the authors of this leak is obviously to harm the movement En Marche! in the final hours before the second round of the French presidential election".[216][220] France's Electoral Commission described the action as a "massive and coordinated piracy action".[220][216] France's Electoral Commission urged journalists not to report on the contents of the leaks, but to heed "the sense of responsibility they must demonstrate, as at stake are the free expression of voters and the sincerity of the election".[220] Cybersecurity
Cybersecurity
experts initially believed that groups linked to Russia were involved in this attack. The Kremlin
The Kremlin
denied any involvement.[221][222][223] The head of the French cyber-security agency, ANSSI, later said that they did not have evidence connecting the hack with Russia, saying that the attack was so simple, that "we can imagine that it was a person who did this alone. They could be in any country."[224] In September 2017, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
released "Spy Files Russia," revealing "how a St. Petersburg-based technology company called Peter-Service helped state entities gather detailed data on Russian cellphone users, part of a national system of online surveillance called System for Operative Investigative Activities (SORM)."[225] Claims of upcoming leaks In January 2011, Rudolf Elmer, a former Swiss banker, passed data containing account details of 2,000 prominent people to Assange, who stated that the information will be vetted before being made publicly available at a later date.[226] In May 2010, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
said it had video footage of a massacre of civilians in Afghanistan by the US military which they were preparing to release.[227][228] In an interview with Chris Anderson on 19 July 2010, Assange showed a document WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
had on an Albanian oil-well blowout, and said they also had material from inside British Petroleum,[229] and that they were "getting enormous quantity of whistle-blower disclosures of a very high calibre" but added that they had not been able to verify and release the material because they did not have enough volunteer journalists.[230] In December 2010, Assange's lawyer, Mark Stephens, told The Andrew Marr Show
The Andrew Marr Show
on BBC
BBC
Television that WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
had information it considered to be a "thermo-nuclear device" which it would release if the organisation needs to defend itself against the authorities.[231] In a 2009 interview by the magazine Computerworld, Assange claimed to be in possession of "5GB from Bank of America". In 2010, he told Forbes
Forbes
magazine that WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
was planning another "megaleak" early in 2011, from the private sector, involving "a big U.S. bank" and revealing an "ecosystem of corruption". Bank of America's stock price decreased by 3%, apparently as a result of this announcement.[232][233] Assange commented on the possible effect of the release that "it could take down a bank or two".[234][235] In August 2011, Reuters
Reuters
announced that Daniel Domscheit-Berg
Daniel Domscheit-Berg
had destroyed approximately 5GB of data cache from Bank of America, that Assange had under his control.[236] In October 2010, Assange told a major Moscow newspaper that "The Kremlin had better brace itself for a coming wave of WikiLeaks disclosures about Russia".[237][238] Assange later clarified: "we have material on many businesses and governments, including in Russia. It's not right to say there's going to be a particular focus on Russia".[239] Authenticity WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has contended that it has never released a misattributed document and that documents are assessed before release. In response to concerns about the possibility of misleading or fraudulent leaks, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has stated that misleading leaks "are already well-placed in the mainstream media. WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
is of no additional assistance."[240] The FAQ states that: "The simplest and most effective countermeasure is a worldwide community of informed users and editors who can scrutinise and discuss leaked documents."[241] According to statements by Assange in 2010, submitted documents are vetted by a group of five reviewers, with expertise in different topics such as language or programming, who also investigate the background of the leaker if his or her identity is known.[242] In that group, Assange has the final decision about the assessment of a document.[242] Columnist Eric Zorn wrote in 2016 that "it's possible, even likely, that every stolen email WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has posted has been authentic."[243] (Writer Glenn Greenwald
Glenn Greenwald
goes further, asserting that WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has a "perfect, long-standing record of only publishing authentic documents."[244]) However, cybersecurity experts agree that it is trivially easy for a person to fabricate an email or alter it, as by changing headers and metadata.[243] Some of the more recent releases, such as many of the emails contained in the Podesta emails, contain DKIM headers. This allows them to be verified as genuine to some degree of certainty.[245] In July 2016, the Aspen Institute's Homeland Security Group, a bipartisan counterterrorism organisation, warned that hackers who stole authentic data might "salt the files they release with plausible forgeries."[243] Russian intelligence agencies have frequently used disinformation tactics, "which means carefully faked emails might be included in the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
dumps. After all, the best way to make false information believable is to mix it in with true information."[246] Promotion of conspiracy theories Murder of Seth Rich WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has promoted conspiracy theories about the murder of Seth Rich.[247][248][249] Unfounded conspiracy theories, spread by some right-wing figures and media outlets, hold that Rich was the source of leaked emails and was killed for working with WikiLeaks.[250] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
fuelled the conspiracy theories by offering a reward of $20,000 for information leading to the capture of Rich's killer and hinting that Rich may have been the source of the leaked emails.[251] No evidence supports the claim that Rich was the source of the leaks.[18][252] The Guardian
The Guardian
wrote that WikiLeaks, along with individuals and groups on the hard right, had been involved in the "ruthless exploitation of [Rich's] death for political purposes".[253] The executive director of the Sunlight Foundation, an organization that advocates for open government, was critical of WikiLeaks' fueling of conspiracy theories surrounding the murder of Seth Rich: "If they feel like they have a link to the staffer’s death, they should say it and be responsible about it. The insinuations, to me, are just disgusting."[254] Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has popularized conspiracies about the Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton, such as tweeting an article which suggested Clinton campaign chairperson John Podesta
John Podesta
engaged in satanic rituals (which was later revealed to be false),[17][255][256] implying that the Democratic Party had Seth Rich killed,[18] suggesting that Clinton wore earpieces to debates and interviews,[257] claiming that Hillary Clinton wanted to drone strike Assange,[258] promoting conspiracy theories about Clinton's health,[19][259][260] and promoting a conspiracy theory from a Donald Trump-related Internet community tying the Clinton campaign to child kidnapper Laura Silsby.[261] Controversy Allegations of anti-Americanism Short of simply disclosing information in the public interest, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has been accused of purposely targeting certain states and people, and presenting its disclosures in misleading and conspiratorial ways to harm those people.[255] Writing in 2012, Foreign Policy's Joshua Keating noted that "nearly all its major operations have targeted the U.S. government or American corporations."[262] In a 2017 speech addressing the Center for Strategic and International Studies, CIA Director Mike Pompeo
Mike Pompeo
referred to WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
as "a non-state hostile intelligence service" and described founder Julian Assange
Julian Assange
as a narcissist, fraud, and coward.[263] Allegations of anti-Clinton and pro-Trump bias Assange wrote on WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
in February 2016: "I have had years of experience in dealing with Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton
and have read thousands of her cables. Hillary lacks judgement and will push the United States into endless, stupid wars which spread terrorism. ... she certainly should not become president of the United States."[264] In July 2017, during an interview by Amy Goodman, Julian Assange
Julian Assange
said that choosing between Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton
and Donald Trump
Donald Trump
is like choosing between cholera or gonorrhea. "Personally, I would prefer neither."[265] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
editor, Sarah Harrison, has stated that the site is not choosing which damaging publications to release, rather releasing information that is available to them.[266] In conversations that were leaked in February 2018, WikiLeaks expressed a preference for a Republican victory in the 2016 election.[20] Having released information that exposed the inner working of a broad range of organisations and politicians, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
started by 2016 to focus almost exclusively on Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.[267] In the 2016 US presidential election, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
only exposed material damaging to the Democratic National Committee
Democratic National Committee
and Hillary Clinton. WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
even rejected the opportunity to publish unrelated leaks, because it dedicated all its resources to Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party. According to The New York Times, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
timed one of its large leaks so that it would happen on the eve of the Democratic Convention.[268] The Washington Post
The Washington Post
noted that the leaks came at an important sensitive moment in the Clinton campaign, as she was preparing to announce her vice-presidential pick and unite the party behind her.[269] The Sunlight Foundation, an organisation that advocates for open government, said that such actions meant that WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
was no longer striving to be transparent but rather sought to achieve political goals: "It's become something else. It's not striving for objectivity. It's more careless. When they publish information it appears to be in service of some specific goal, of retribution, at the expense of the individual."[254] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
explained its actions in a 2017 statement to Foreign Policy: " WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
schedules publications to maximize readership and reader engagement. During distracting media events such as the Olympics or a high profile election, unrelated publications are sometimes delayed until the distraction passes but never are rejected for this reason."[267] On 7 October 2016, an hour after the media had begun to dedicate wall-to-wall coverage of the revelation that Trump had bragged on video about sexually harassing women, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
began to release emails hacked from the personal account of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta.[270][271] CNN
CNN
notes that due to extensive coverage of the Trump tapes, the leaks were an "afterthought" in news coverage.[270] Podesta suggested that the emails were timed to deflect attention from the Trump tapes.[271] In 2010, Donald Trump
Donald Trump
called WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
"disgraceful" and suggested that the "death penalty" should be a punishment for WikiLeaks' releases of information.[272] Following the dump of e-mails hacked from the Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton
campaign, Donald Trump
Donald Trump
told voters, "I love WikiLeaks!"[273] Trump made many references to WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
during the course of the campaign; by one estimate, he referenced disclosures by WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
over 160 times in speeches during the last 30 days of the campaign.[274] Correspondence between WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
and Donald Trump
Donald Trump
Jr. In November 2017, it was revealed that the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
Twitter
Twitter
account corresponded with Donald Trump
Donald Trump
Jr. during the 2016 presidential election.[21] The correspondence shows how WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
actively solicited the co-operation of Trump Jr., a campaign surrogate and advisor in the campaign of his father. WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
urged the Trump campaign to reject the results of the 2016 presidential election at a time when it looked as if the Trump campaign would lose.[21] WikiLeaks asked Trump Jr. to share a false claim by Assange that Hillary Clinton had wanted to attack him with drones.[21] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
also shared a link to a site that would help people to search through WikiLeaks documents.[21] Trump Jr. shared both. After the election, WikiLeaks also requested that the president-elect push Australia to appoint Assange as ambassador to the US. After The New York Times
The New York Times
published a fragment of Donald Trump's tax returns for one year, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
asked Trump Jr. for one or more of his father's tax returns, explaining that it would be in his father's best interest because it would "dramatically improve the perception of our impartiality" and not come "through the most biased source (e.g. NYT/MSNBC)."[21] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
also asked Trump Jr. to leak his own e-mails to them days after The New York Times broke a story about e-mail correspondence between Trump Jr. and a Kremlin-affiliated lawyer; WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
said that it would be "beautifully confounding" for them to publish the e-mails and that it would deprive other news outlets from putting a negative spin on the correspondence.[21] Trump Jr. provided this correspondence to congressional investigators looking into Russian interference in the 2016 election.[21] Allegations of Russian influence In August 2016, after WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
published thousands of DNC emails, it was claimed that Russian intelligence had hacked the e-mails and leaked them to WikiLeaks. At the time, DNC officials made such claims, along with a number of cybersecurity experts and cybersecurity firms.[275][276] In October 2016, the US intelligence community announced that it was "confident that the Russian Government directed the recent compromises of e-mails from U.S. persons and institutions, including from U.S. political organizations".[16] The US intelligence agencies said that the hacks were consistent with the methods of Russian-directed efforts, and that people high up within the Kremlin were likely involved.[16] On 14 October 2016, CNN
CNN
reported that "there is mounting evidence that the Russian government is supplying WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
with hacked emails pertaining to the U.S. presidential election."[277] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has denied any connection to or co-operation with Russia.[277] President Putin has strongly denied any Russian involvement in the election.[201][202] In September 2016, the German weekly magazine Focus reported that according to a confidential German government dossier, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
had long since been infiltrated by Russian agents aiming to discredit NATO governments. The magazine added that French and British intelligence services had come to the same conclusion and said Russian President Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Putin
and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev
Dmitry Medvedev
receive details about what WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
publishes before publication.[278] The Focus report followed a New York Times
New York Times
story that suggested that WikiLeaks may be a laundering machine for compromising material about Western countries gathered by Russian spies.[279] On 10 December 2016, several news outlets, including The Guardian
The Guardian
and The Washington Post, reported that the Central Intelligence Agency concluded that Russia intelligence operatives provided materials to WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
in an effort to help Donald Trump's election bid. The Washington Post article stated: "The CIA has concluded in a secret assessment that Russia intervened in the 2016 election to help Donald Trump win the presidency, rather than just to undermine confidence in the U.S. electoral system, according to officials briefed on the matter."[280] The Guardian
The Guardian
article reported, "individuals linked to the Russian government had provided WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
with thousands of confidential emails stolen from the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and others."[281] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has frequently been criticised for its absence of whistleblowing on or criticism of Russia.[22] The Guardian notes that journalists are killed frequently in Russia, and notes that Freedom House has ranked Russian press freedom as "not free... The main national news agenda is firmly controlled by the Kremlin. The government sets editorial policy at state-owned television stations, which dominate the media landscape and generate propagandistic content.[282] In April 2016, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
tweeted criticism of the Panama Papers, which had among other things revealed Russian businesses and individuals linked with offshore ties (Vladimir Putin's associates had as much as $2 billion in offshore accounts).[283][267] The WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
Twitter account tweeted, "#PanamaPapers Putin attack was produced by OCCRP which targets Russia & former USSR and was funded by USAID and [George] Soros".[23] Putin would later go on to dismiss the Panama Papers by citing WikiLeaks: " WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has showed us that official people and official organs of the U.S. are behind this.”[23] According to The New York Times, both Assange claims are substance-free: "there is no evidence suggesting that the United States government had a role in releasing the Panama Papers."[284] Assange also falsely asserted that the Panama Papers
Panama Papers
gave Western figures a free pass, when the leaks in fact reported on a number of high-profile Western politicians, including UK Prime Minister David Cameron.[267] In 2012 when WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
began to run out of funds, Assange began to host a television show on Russia Today, Russia's state-owned news network.[285] Assange has never disclosed how much he or WikiLeaks were paid for his tv-show.[285] After President Trump's National Security Advisor Michael T. Flynn resigned in February 2017 due to reports over his communications with Russian officials and subsequent lies over the content and nature of those communications, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
tweeted that Flynn resigned "after destabilization campaign by U.S. spies, Democrats, press."[286][287] In April 2017, the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
Twitter
Twitter
account suggested that the Khan Shaykhun chemical attack, which international human rights organisations and governments of the United States, United Kingdom, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, France, and Israel attributed to the Syrian government, was a false flag attack.[288] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
stated that "while western establishment media beat the drum for more war in Syria the matter is far from clear", and shared a video by a Syrian activist who claimed that Islamist extremists were probably behind the chemical attack, not the Syrian government.[288] In May 2017, cybersecurity experts stated that they believed that groups affiliated with the Russian government were involved in the hacking and leaking of e-mails associated with the Emmanuel Macron campaign; these e-mails were published on Pastebin but heavily promoted by WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
social media channels.[221][222][223] In April 2017, CIA Director Mike Pompeo
Mike Pompeo
stated: "It is time to call out WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
for what it really is – a non-state hostile intelligence service often abetted by state actors like Russia." Pompeo said that the US Intelligence Community had concluded that Russia's "primary propaganda outlet," RT had "actively collaborated" with WikiLeaks.[289] In August 2017, Foreign Policy reported that WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
had in the summer of 2016 turned down a large cache of documents containing information damaging to the Russian government.[267][290] WikiLeaks justified this by saying "As far as we recall these are already public... WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
rejects all information that it cannot verify.[291] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
rejects submissions that have already been published elsewhere".[267] Whereas news outlets had reported on some contents of the leaks in 2014, the information that news outlets reported on was less than half of the data that was made available to WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
in the summer of 2016.[267] In October 2017, it was revealed that Cambridge Analytica, a company working on behalf of the Trump presidential campaign, had contacted WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
about missing Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton
e-mails and the possibility of creating a searchable database for the campaign to use.[292][293] After this was reported, Assange confirmed that WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
had been approached by Cambridge Analytica
Cambridge Analytica
but had rejected the approach.[292][293] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
did not disclose what the subject of Cambridge Analytica's approach was.[294] Allegations of anti-semitism WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has been accused of anti-semitism.[295][296][297][298] The WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
Twitter
Twitter
account tweeted anti-semitic jibes.[297][298] The organisation has called out Jewish "lobbies" and claimed that a "Jewish conspiracy" is attempting to discredit the organisation.[295][299] In July 2016, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
suggested that triple parentheses, or (((echoes))) – a tool used by neo-Nazis to identify Jews on Twitter, appropriated by Jews across the Twittersphere – had been used as a way for "establishment climbers" to identify one another.[296][298] Assange denied making claims of a Jewish conspiracy, stating, "'Jewish conspiracy' is completely false, in spirit and in word. It is serious and upsetting."[295] In leaked internal conversations, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
described a journalist as a "rat" and noted that "he's Jewish".[20] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
also noted that the journalist had been "engaged" in the contesting anti-Semitic jibes on Twitter, and encouraged others to troll the journalist.[20] Exaggerated and misleading descriptions of the contents of leaks WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has been criticised for making misleading claims about the contents of its leaks.[300][301] Media outlets have also been criticised for reporting on WikiLeaks' claims about the CIA leak, which were later retracted.[300] According to University of North Carolina
North Carolina
Professor Zeynep Tufekci, this is part of a pattern of behaviour. After the 2016 Turkish coup d'état attempt, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
announced that it would release e-mails belonging to Turkey's ruling Justice and Development Party. When these e-mails were released, however, it "was nothing but mundane mailing lists of tens of thousands of ordinary people who discussed politics online. Back then, too, the ruse worked: Many Western journalists had hyped these non-leaks."[300] According to Tufekci, there are three steps to WikiLeaks' "disinformation campaigns": "The first step is to dump many documents at once — rather than allowing journalists to scrutinise them and absorb their significance before publication. The second step is to sensationalise the material with misleading news releases and tweets. The third step is to sit back and watch as the news media unwittingly promotes the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
agenda under the auspices of independent reporting."[300] Inadequate curation and violations of personal privacy WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has drawn criticism for violating the personal privacy of a multitude of individuals and inadequately curating its content. These critics include transparency advocates, such as Edward Snowden, the Sunlight Foundation
Sunlight Foundation
and the Federation of American Scientists.[24] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has published individuals' Social Security numbers, medical information, and credit card numbers.[25] An analysis by the Associated Press
Associated Press
found that WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
had in one of its mass-disclosures published "the personal information of hundreds of people – including sick children, rape victims and mental health patients".[25] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has named teenage rape victims, and outed an individual arrested for homosexuality in Saudi Arabia.[25] Some of WikiLeaks' cables "described patients with psychiatric conditions, seriously ill children or refugees".[25] An analysis of WikiLeaks' Saudi cables "turned up more than 500 passport, identity, academic or employment files... three dozen records pertaining to family issues in the cables – including messages about marriages, divorces, missing children, elopements and custody battles. Many are very personal, like the marital certificates that reveal whether the bride was a virgin. Others deal with Saudis who are deeply in debt, including one man who says his wife stole his money. One divorce document details a male partner's infertility. Others identify the partners of women suffering from sexually transmitted diseases including HIV and Hepatitis C."[25] Two individuals named in the DNC leaks were targeted by identity thieves following WikiLeaks' reveal of their Social Security and credit card information.[25] In its leak of DNC e-mails, WikiLeaks revealed the details of an ordinary staffer's suicide attempt and brought attention to it through a tweet.[302][303] WikiLeaks' publishing of Sony's hacked e-mails drew criticism for violating the privacy of Sony's employees and for failing to be in the public interest.[304][305] Michael A. Cohen, a fellow at the Century Foundation, argues that "data dumps like these represent a threat to our already shrinking zone of privacy."[304] He noted that the willingness of WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
to publish information of this type encourages hacking and cybertheft: "With ready and willing amplifiers, what's to deter the next cyberthief from stealing a company's database of information and threatening to send it to Wikileaks if a list of demands aren't met?"[304] The Sunlight Foundation, a nonprofit that advocates for open government, has criticised WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
for inadequate curation of its content and for "weaponised transparency," writing that with the DNC leaks, "Wikileaks again failed the due diligence review we expect of putatively journalistic entities when it published the personal information of ordinary citizens, including passport and Social Security numbers contained in the hacked emails of Democratic National Committee staff. We are not alone in raising ethical questions about Wikileaks' shift from whistleblower to platform for weaponised transparency. Any organisation that 'doxxes' a public is harming privacy."[306] The manner in which WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
publishes content can have the effect of censoring political enemies: "Wikileaks' indiscriminate disclosure in this case is perhaps the closest we've seen in reality to the bogeyman projected by enemies to reform — that transparency is just a Trojan Horse for chilling speech and silencing political enemies."[306] In July 2016, Edward Snowden
Edward Snowden
criticised WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
for insufficiently curating its content.[26] When Snowden made data public, he did so by working with the Washington Post, the Guardian and other news organisations, choosing only to make documents public which exposed National Security Agency surveillance programs.[26] Content that compromised national security or exposed sensitive personal information was withheld.[26] WikiLeaks, on the other hand, makes little effort to remove sensitive personal information or withhold content with adverse national security implications. WikiLeaks responded by accusing Snowden of pandering to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.[26] University of North Carolina
North Carolina
Professor Zeynep Tufekci
Zeynep Tufekci
has criticised WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
for exposing sensitive personal information: "WikiLeaks, for example, gleefully tweeted to its millions of followers that a Clinton Foundation employee had attempted suicide... Data dumps by WikiLeaks have outed rape victims and gay people in Saudi Arabia, private citizens' emails and personal information in Turkey, and the voice mail messages of Democratic National Committee
Democratic National Committee
staff members."[27] She argues these data dumps which violate personal privacy without being in the public interest "threaten our ability to dissent by destroying privacy and unleashing a glut of questionable information that functions, somewhat unexpectedly, as its own form of censorship, rather than as a way to illuminate the maneuverings of the powerful."[27] In January 2017, the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
Task Force, a Twitter
Twitter
account associated with WikiLeaks,[307] proposed the creation of a database to track verified Twitter
Twitter
users, including sensitive personal information on individuals' homes, families and finances.[308][307][309] According to the Chicago Tribune, "the proposal faced a sharp and swift backlash as technologists, journalists and security researchers slammed the idea as a 'sinister' and dangerous abuse of power and privacy."[308] Twitter
Twitter
furthermore bans the use of Twitter
Twitter
data for "surveillance purposes," stating "Posting another person's private and confidential information is a violation of the Twitter
Twitter
rules."[307] Internal conflicts and lack of transparency Within WikiLeaks, there has been public disagreement between founder and spokesperson Julian Assange
Julian Assange
and Daniel Domscheit-Berg, the website's former German representative who was suspended by Assange. Domscheit-Berg announced on 28 September 2010 that he was leaving the organisation due to internal conflicts over management of the website.[92][310][311]

Julian Assange
Julian Assange
(left) with Daniel Domscheit-Berg. Domscheit-Berg was ejected from WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
and started a rival "whistleblower" organisation named OpenLeaks.

On 25 September 2010, after being suspended by Assange for "disloyalty, insubordination and destabilisation", Daniel Domscheit-Berg, the German spokesman for WikiLeaks, told Der Spiegel that he was resigning, saying " WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has a structural problem. I no longer want to take responsibility for it, and that's why I am leaving the project."[312][313][314] Assange accused Domscheit-Berg of leaking information to Newsweek, claiming the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
team was unhappy with Assange's management and handling of the Afghan war document releases.[314] Daniel Domscheit-Berg
Daniel Domscheit-Berg
wanted greater transparency in the articles released to the public. Another vision of his was to focus on providing technology that allowed whistle-blowers to protect their identity as well as a more transparent way of communicating with the media, forming new partnerships and involving new people.[315] Domscheit-Berg left with a small group to start OpenLeaks, a new leak organisation and website with a different management and distribution philosophy.[312][316] While leaving, Daniel Domscheit-Berg
Daniel Domscheit-Berg
copied and then deleted roughly 3,500 unpublished documents from the WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
servers,[317] including information on the US government's 'no-fly list' and inside information from 20 right-wing organisations, and according to a WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
statement, 5 gigabytes of data relating to Bank of America, the internal communications of 20 neo-Nazi organisations and US intercept information for "over a hundred Internet companies".[318] In Domscheit-Berg's book he wrote: "To this day, we are waiting for Julian to restore security, so that we can return the material to him, which was on the submission platform."[319] In August 2011, Domscheit-Berg claims he permanently deleted the files "in order to ensure that the sources are not compromised."[320] Herbert Snorrason, a 25-year-old Icelandic university student, resigned after he challenged Assange on his decision to suspend Domscheit-Berg and was bluntly rebuked.[314] Iceland
Iceland
MP Birgitta Jónsdóttir also left WikiLeaks, citing lack of transparency, lack of structure, and poor communication flow in the organisation.[321] According to the periodical The Independent
The Independent
(London), at least a dozen key supporters of WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
left the website during 2010.[322] Non-disclosure agreements Those working for WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
are reportedly required to sign sweeping non-disclosure agreements covering all conversations, conduct, and material, with Assange having sole power over disclosure.[323] The penalty for non-compliance in one such agreement was reportedly £12 million.[323] WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has been challenged for this practice, as it seen to be hypocritical for an organisation dedicated to transparency to limit the transparency of its inner workings and limit the accountability of powerful individuals in the organisation.[323][324][325] Reception Main article: Reception of WikiLeaks

Graffiti
Graffiti
in Bilbao
Bilbao
"We want to know."

WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
has received praise as well as criticism. The organisation won a number of awards in its early years, including The Economist's New Media Award in 2008 at the Index on Censorship Awards[326] and Amnesty International's UK Media Award in 2009.[327][328] In 2010, the New York Daily News listed WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
first among websites "that could totally change the news,"[329] and Julian Assange
Julian Assange
received the Sam Adams Award[330] and was named the Readers' Choice for TIME's Person of the Year in 2010.[331] The UK Information Commissioner has stated that " WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
is part of the phenomenon of the online, empowered citizen."[332] During its first days, an Internet petition
Internet petition
in support of WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
attracted more than six hundred thousand signatures.[333] Sympathisers of WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
in the media and academia commended it during its early tears for exposing state and corporate secrets, increasing transparency, assisting freedom of the press, and enhancing democratic discourse while challenging powerful institutions.[334][335][336][337][338][339][340] In 2010, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights expressed concern over the "cyber war" being led at the time against WikiLeaks,[341] and in a joint statement with the Organization of American States
Organization of American States
the UN Special
Special
Rapporteur called on states and other people to keep international legal principles in mind.[342] Several Republicans who had once been highly critical of WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
and Julian Assange
Julian Assange
began to speak fondly of him after WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
published the DNC leaks and started to regularly criticise Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton
and the Democratic Party.[343][344] Having called WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
"disgraceful" in 2010, President-Elect Donald Trump
Donald Trump
praised WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
in October 2016, saying, "I love WikiLeaks."[345][346] Newt Gingrich, who called for Assange to be "treated as an enemy combatant" in 2010, praised him as a "down to Earth, straight forward interviewee" in 2017.[343] Sean Hannity, who had in 2010 said that Assange waged a "war" on the United States, praised him in 2016 for showing "how corrupt, dishonest and phony our government is".[344] Sarah Palin, who had in 2010 described Assange as an "anti-American operative with blood on his hands", lavished praise on him in 2017.[347] Ann Coulter called for Assange to be awarded the presidential medal of freedom.[343] At the same time, several US government officials have criticised WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
for exposing classified information and claimed that the leaks harm national security and compromise international diplomacy.[348][349][350][351][352] Several human rights organisations requested with respect to earlier document releases that WikiLeaks adequately redact the names of civilians working with international forces, to prevent repercussions.[353] Some journalists have likewise criticised a perceived lack of editorial discretion when releasing thousands of documents at once and without sufficient analysis.[354] In 2016, Harvard law professor and Electronic Frontier Foundation board member Jonathan Zittrain
Jonathan Zittrain
argued that a culture in which one constantly risks being "outed" as a result of virtual Watergate-like break-ins (or 4th amendment violations) could lead people to hesitate to speak their minds.[355] In April 2017, CIA Director Mike Pompeo
Mike Pompeo
called WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
"a non-state hostile intelligence service often abetted by state actors like Russia."[356] In 2011, hacktivist group Anonymous published a secret proposal presented by a Palantir Technologies
Palantir Technologies
employee to Hunton & Williams, a Washington, D.C. law firm, to attempt to discredit WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
and supporters such as Glenn Greenwald
Glenn Greenwald
with disinformation and cyberattacks.[357] Two other private security firms, Berico Technologies and HBGary, were also involved in the proposal.[358][359][360][361] Palantir temporarily suspended the employee, its CEO Alex Karp apologised to Greenwald, and a spokesperson said the company would have collapsed if it had carried out the proposal.[357] Spin-offs Release of United States
United States
diplomatic cables was followed by the creation of a number of other organisations based on the WikiLeaks model.[362]

OpenLeaks
OpenLeaks
was created by a former WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
spokesperson. Daniel Domscheit-Berg said the intention was to be more transparent than WikiLeaks. OpenLeaks
OpenLeaks
was supposed to start public operations in early 2011 but despite much media coverage, as of April 2013[update] it is not operating.[needs update] In December 2011, WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
launched Friends of WikiLeaks, a social network for supporters and founders of the website.[363] On 9 September 2013[364] a number of major Dutch media outlets supported the launch of Publeaks, which provides a secure website for people to leak documents to the media using the GlobaLeaks whistleblowing software.[365] RuLeaks is aimed at being a Russian equivalent to WikiLeaks. It was initiated originally to provide translated versions of the WikiLeaks cables but the Moscow Times
Moscow Times
reports it has started to publish its own content as well.[366] Leakymails is a project designed to obtain and publish relevant documents exposing corruption of the political class and the powerful in Argentina.[367][368][369] Honest Appalachia,[370] initiated in January 2012, is a website based in the United States
United States
intended to appeal to potential "whistleblowers" in West Virginia, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee and North Carolina, and serve as a replicable model for similar projects elsewhere.[371][372]

In popular culture Further information: The Fifth Estate (film)
The Fifth Estate (film)
and We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks A thriller about WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
was released in the United States
United States
on 18 October 2013. The documentary We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks by director Alex Gibney
Alex Gibney
premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival.[373] War, lies and videotape is a documentary by French directors Paul Moreira and Luc Hermann from press agency Premieres Lignes. The film was first released in France, in 2011 and then broadcast worldwide.[374] The Source is a 2014 oratorio by Ted Hearne, with a libretto by Mark Doten that features WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks
document disclosures by Chelsea Manning.[375] See also

Internet portal Intelligence portal Freedom of speech portal Politics portal

2016 Democratic National Committee
Democratic National Committee
email leak Accountability Anonymous (group) Assange v Swedish Prosecution Authority Chilling Effects Classified information in the United States Conspiracy theory Data activism Digital rights Freedom of information Freedom of the press Freedom of the Press Foundation GlobaLeaks ICWATCH Information security Information warfare Julian Assange New York Times
New York Times
Co. v. United States Open government Open society 1993 PGP Criminal investigation Privacy Russian interference in the 2016 United States
United States
elections Transparency (social)

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