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BP and Bank of America are Wikileaks next U.S. targets.  (Source: The Inquisitr)
Site's founder claims to have exclusive info from bank executive's hard drive

It must be hard for Wikileaks to come to come up with an appropriate second act.  The site aired close to 100,000 confidential documents from the U.S. military and 250,000 classified U.S. State Department diplomatic cables.  The move left the U.S. government scrambling to try to control the damage that leaks had on it.

But 
Wikileaks must come up with an appropriate second act if it hopes to maintain its "Big Brother" global role.  Most of its leaks thus far have focused on targeting America.  It's already embarrassed the U.S. government.  So what could be better than gunning for the U.S. private sector?

The site reportedly is preparing to release a treasure trove of leaked information from a major U.S. bank.  Site founder Julian Assange aired the news in an interview with 
Forbes Magazine on Monday.  

Most believe that his target will be the much-maligned Bank of America.  Last year Mr. Assange in an interview with 
Computerworld reported having "several gigabytes" of data stolen off a Bank of America executive's hard drive.

Shares of Bank of America stock dropped on the New York Stock Exchange this week, as fears that the company could become the next target sunk in.

Another controversial Euro-American corporate giant also has reason to fear.  

BP p.l.c., an English company whose largest division is in the U.S., is reportedly also to be targeting by Mr. Assange's information attacks.  He claimed in the 
Forbes interview to have "lots" of secret BP data, and was merely trying to verify if it was all unique and unreleased.

One has to wonder, though, if the public may be somewhat apathetic to a BP leak after how much the company was lashed in the media following its notorious oil spill.  Nonetheless, the threat dropped BP shares down 2.5 percent on Monday, following the announcement (share prices have since risen back to around their previous trading levels).

Before its efforts to disparage the U.S. government's Middle Eastern war efforts, 
Wikileaks was best known for a leak of information from banking giant Julius Baer, which subsequently sued the site.



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Who to side with on this one?
By MrTeal on 12/2/2010 10:50:19 AM , Rating: 2
On one hand, Jason really trumps up these articles with sensational rhetoric, adding things implying that a BoA hard drive was stolen when Assange gave no indication that that was the case. From the linked interview...
quote:
"At the moment, for example, we are sitting on 5GB from Bank of America, one of the executive's hard drives," he said. "Now how do we present that? It's a difficult problem. We could just dump it all into one giant Zip file, but we know for a fact that has limited impact. To have impact, it needs to be easy for people to dive in and search it and get something out of it."


On the other hand, what the hell is Wikileaks trying to achieve here? The entire premise of a site that facilitates whistleblowers coming forward to protect the public interest is commendable, but that's not what I see happening. Wikileaks doesn't have people coming forward and providing evidence of US forces torturing or murdering people, illegally starting wars; and I'll bet that the BoA and BP stuff won't show them intentionally perpetrating the financial crisis or the conditions that lead to the Deepwater Horizon spill. This isn't Deep Throat or The Insider. All Wikileaks is doing is getting as much secret information as possible and spewing it onto the internet.

If Assange were to show that Coca-Cola was cutting corners and producing a drink with dangerous levels of some chemical, that would be a valid leak. Acquiring the secret formula and releasing it just because you can just makes you a douche, not a hero. DT doesn't need to go overboard here to make Wikileaks look bad, they do a good enough job of that all on their own.




RE: Who to side with on this one?
By sviola on 12/2/10, Rating: 0
RE: Who to side with on this one?
By The Raven on 12/2/2010 3:29:22 PM , Rating: 2
I really doubt that he is passing up criticism of the Russian gov't or anyone else. I think it is our culture of free speech and free thought and whistleblower safety that produces all of this.

I mean the US gov't itself can't get all the info they want out of Iran for example; how do you expect one of their citizens to do it?

And he is an English speaker and deals with English speaking countries. Among those America is the one pushing policies. I don't hear much controversy out of New Zealand for example. Of course they get info from non-English sources as well but I'm just trying to explain the probability that Wikileaks is not targeting the US in particular. It is not driven by some diversity panel so I don't expect equal coverage.


By foolsgambit11 on 12/2/2010 11:31:10 PM , Rating: 2
And if they are targeting America, there may be good reasons for it. For instance, targeting China would have little impact, since the governmental system minimizes the impact of popular opinion (as well as censors information, so it's doubtful whether the public would hear much about the leak). The fact that Western democracies are sensitive to public opinion is what makes Wikileaks' strategy effective. Additionally, since people are affected by U.S. policy around the world (more so than other countries, given America's power), I think they have a right to speak up about abuses of that power, or take action to try to rein in that power if they feel that's in their best interest.

That being said, the U.S. is certainly within its rights to take legal action against people entrusted with sensitive or classified information who leak it to foreign nationals. But America's right to protect that information shouldn't give it power to go after people who aren't governed by its laws, and have no obligation to protect its secrets.


RE: Who to side with on this one?
By theapparition on 12/2/2010 1:25:37 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
On one hand, Jason really trumps up these articles with sensational rhetoric, adding things implying that a BoA hard drive was stolen when Assange gave no indication that that was the case.

Right, I suppose the executive just gave them the HD information. Even if that were true, that is still theft. Company proprietary information is deemed property and the executive could be charged with theft, and Wikileaks in posession of stolen property.

But I agree with you in principal. Wikileaks has lost its way. Perhaps at one time they served a purpose, but now, just like any other rabid organization trying to break the story.


RE: Who to side with on this one?
By MrTeal on 12/2/2010 2:56:12 PM , Rating: 2
Oh, I'm not disagreeing with you, I would still bet good money that the information is stolen. However, Jason has no proof other than idle speculation and past behavior that this is the case, and it's a fairly serious accusation. It could conceivably leave DT open to libel charges if they can't back it up.


By theapparition on 12/3/2010 10:44:19 AM , Rating: 1
I hear you, but there is no way the information that Wikileaks claims to posess is by any legal means. Company proprietary infomation is company property. I'm sure the companys have requested that info back, but have no actionable recourse other than limited legal action in a foreign country.

No way that Wikileaks would sue DT, or anyone else, in US court. First to be supoeaned would be Julian himself, and if he sets foot in an extradition country he's toast.


RE: Who to side with on this one?
By The Raven on 12/2/2010 3:35:14 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
just like any other rabid organization trying to break the story.

Yeah, they are making money hand over fist in ad revenue.
/sarcasm


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