Remember the snitch at school? You either loved them for giving you all of the hot off the press gossip, or you hated them and found them entirely untrustworthy for never keeping their mouth shut.
Well, Julian Assange’s whistleblowing website WikiLeaks is exactly like that snitch. Loathed by some for disclosing information that was not meant for the mere public and hailed by others for blowing the cover off certain organisations.
The site releases never before seen material about the inner workings of governments, banks, companies and religious organisations. It has been branded as the one site more important than the web giants Facebook, Twitter and Google. Tom Wills, an IT and technology writer from data security experts HANDD takes a look at WikiLeaks most outrageous exposés to date, all of which have helped the site garner such an creditable reputation:
Scientology, a nondenominational movement founded in the US in the 1950s by L. Ron Hubbard, which emphasises self knowledge as a means of realizing full spiritual potential. Shrouded in secrecy, the methods of the Church of Scientology are practised among Hollywood’s elite.
That secrecy was soon shattered, when WikiLeaks got its hands on a stack of documents that explained the routines of the religion and published them in a post entitled “The collected secret ‘bibles of Scientology”.
The BNP, or British National Party, is one of the most controversial British political movements due to its far-right ideology. The party has been described as fascist and white nationalist by political commentators, as well as being criticised by Prime Minister David Cameron and The Royal British Legion.
Due to their controversial approach, not all British National Party members are happy to be publicly associated with the party. This was emphasised when WikiLeaks published the names, addresses and vocations of every member, exposing anyone from teachers to police officers.
The War in Afghanistan is a contentious topic because a large majority of, both US and UK, citizens do not support the reasons behind it.
WikiLeaks was thrust into the public limelight when it released over 90,000 Afghanistan War logs in 2010, exposing a horde of cover ups, stories of torture and deaths of innocent civilians. The US military and government were highly embarrassed by the leak, which also revealed that one of its supposed allies (Pakistan) was supporting the opposition.
4. Sarah Palin
Sarah Palin is a well-known figure in American politics for an abundance of reasons. She was made even more renowned in 2008 with the help of WikiLeaks, although it was not the kind of publicity she would welcome with open arms.
During the 2008 presidential election, when running for vice president, details of her Yahoo! email address were made public. It was revealed that she used this account to send work emails, which is strictly forbidden when you work for the US government. WikiLeaks claimed that Palin was “using private email accounts to conduct government business and in the process avoid transparency laws”.
This article was written by Tom Wills, an IT and technology writer for HANDD, providing Data Security and Managed File Transfer solutions.