Washington, Feb 15 (ANI): The computer hackers' collective Anonymous has revealed that a number of Internet security companies had planned to attack and discredit WikiLeaks.
The revelations came after Anonymous volunteers hacked the servers of HB Gary Federal, a security company that sells investigative services to companies last week, and posted thousands of the firm's emails on the Internet, The Independent reports.
The attack was being carried out as revenge for claims by the company's chief executive Aaron Barr that he had successfully infiltrated the cyber protest network and discovered details of its leadership and structure, it added.
The posted e-mails revealed an apparent proposal that intended to discredit WikiLeaks, and journalists who were sympathetic towards the whistle-blowing website.
The three Internet security companies-HB Gary Federal, Palantir Technologies and Berico Technologies are already in a position to attack WikiLeaks, which is said to be preparing to release a slew of embarrassing information on the Bank of America, the paper said.
The trio-companies' preparations indicate a number of assaults on WikiLeaks including deliberately submitting false documents to the website to undermine its credibility, pioneering cyber attacks to expose who the leakers to WikiLeaks are, and going after sympathetic journalists.
An e-mail written to a Palantir employee by Barr says that security companies should find out and threaten people who are pro-WikiLeaks, adding that there is a "need to get people to understand that if they support the organisation we will come after them. Transaction records are easily identifiable."
Glenn Greenwald, a pro-WikiLeaks reporter in the US, has said that although he did not take the matter seriously earlier, he became more concerned after learning a "lot more" about the issue in the last couple of days.
"I now take this more seriously - not in terms of my involvement but the broader implications this story highlights. For one thing, it turns out that the firms involved are large, legitimate and serious, and do substantial amounts of work for both the US government and the nation's largest private corporations," he said. (ANI)