An unknown hacker has publicized sensitive information on hundreds of German politicians on Twitter, including their contacts, private chats, as well as financial details. The victims, which were primarily politicians but also included celebrities and journalists, comprised figures from all the political parties in the country with the exception of the far-right party AfD.
European MPs, German MPs and MPs from state parliaments were affected, according to German Justice Minister Martina Fietz.
The information was shared on the microblogging platform from the first of December until the 28th of the same month, “in the style of an advent calendar last month” according to the BBC.
And while the German authorities work to find the perpetrator, there still isn’t any indication on who that might be. What is known is that the Twitter account was operated from the city of Hamburg. Some reports have also suggested that this might be the work of a lone wolf leaker who has access to the data, perhaps through their work.
The full extent of the hack is not yet known either. The German Interior Minister said that, so far, there is no evidence that German parliamentary or government systems had been compromised. A government spokeswoman added that no sensitive data belonging to the chancellor’s office has surfaced anywhere.
Russia is a primary suspect in the incident. Experts believe that the methods used suggest that the Russian Federation might be the culprit. Furthermore, the country has been previously accused of several hacking attempts, including the theft of data from computers in the Bundestag, Germany’s federal parliament, and a hack of the German government’s IT network.
And since Germany’s far-right party was excluded, it is natural to assume that the perpetrators could be domestic actors with affiliations to the right-wing.