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The leak has already been described by experts as potentially more significant than the NSA leaks by Edward Snowden in 2013, according to the Wall Street Journal.
WikiLeaks’ publication of a massive batch of covert documents detailing the hacking techniques used by the CIA poses a multitude of uncomfortable questions for world leaders, law enforcement and even WikiLeaks itself.
WikiLeaks says that the classified information contained in the leaked documents somehow got “lost” by the CIA and subsequently “circulated among former US government hackers and contractors in an unauthorized manner.”
The documents reportedly showed that CIA hackers could get into Apple iPhones, Google Android devices and other gadgets in order to capture text and voice messages before they were encrypted with sophisticated software.
WikiLeaks stated on Twitter that the information revealed so far has accounted for “less than 1 percent” of the total series of publications. More releases are expected, however the time and date is still unknown.
Ex-CIA Director Michael Hayden told the BBC: “If what I have read is true, then this seems to be an incredibly damaging leak in terms of the tactics, techniques, procedures and tools that were used by the Central Intelligence Agency to conduct legitimate foreign intelligence.”
“In other words, it’s made my country and my country’s friends less safe.”
Edward Snowden tweeted that the leak, “looks authentic,” adding to the feeling that the files are genuine.
The White House said on Wednesday that President Donald Trump was “extremely concerned” about a CIA security breach that led to the Wikileaks release, and the administration would be tough on leakers, according to StraitsTimes.com.
“Anybody who leaks classified information will be held to the highest degree of law,” spokesman Sean Spicer told reporters.
The leak also revealed that vulnerabilities in Google’s Android Operating System, used in 85 percent of the world’s smart phones, allowed it to be “weaponized” by the CIA using hacking code.
The techniques allow the CIA to access data from social messaging platforms, including WhatsApp, Weibo and Clockman before encryption, according to WikiLeaks.