Russian documents go public in leak from transparency activists

MANILA, Philippines – Leaked data from Russia is now within the public eye following the release of a trove of information – approximately 175 gigabytes worth – on what some might call a WikiLeaks rival.

The group, calling itself Distributed Denial of Secrets (DDoSecrets), released the collection of data on Friday, January 25.

One of the cofounders of the initiative, journalist Emma Best, told The Daily Beast on January 24 the trove had information sourced from previous, obscure, or otherwise hard-to-find leaks.

#DDoSecrets has added: Dark Side of the Kremlin (108 GB), hundreds of thousands of messages and files from Russian politicians, journalists, oligarchs, religious figures, and nationalists/terrorists in Ukraine. https://t.co/7barTSC7h3 Track changes at https://t.co/C8F97OUSOZ — Distributed Denial of Secrets (@DDoSecrets) January 25, 2019 #DDoSecrets has added: Dark Side of the Kremlin Email Database (146 MB) 241,000 emails extracted from the Dark Side of the Kremlin collection, input into a searchable CSV database https://t.co/7barTSC7h3 Track changes at https://t.co/C8F97OUSOZ — Distributed Denial of Secrets (@DDoSecrets) January 25, 2019

 

The leaked data includes information on Russia's war with Ukraine. Data also exists tying the Kremlin with Russia's Orthodox Church, as well as information reportedly taken from Russia's Ministry of Internal Affairs.

According to the New York Times, WikiLeaks had previously rejected publishing this trove, saying it "rejects all submissions that it cannot verify” or that it finds “insignificant."

Additional material from the trove include the Russian emails and materials obtained by Russian hacking group Shaltai Boltai, documents from the Russian arms exporters Rosoboronexport, as well as information pertaining to a so-called “hacking spree” against Russian targets accused of faking a story regarding the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 back in 2014.

One issue that may make the impact of this data trove difficult to ascertain is the problems with searching and sifting through the information available.

Despite this, the fear it brings out from people in positions of power might be felt. Best recalled a potential attempt to disrupt their efforts, bringing them to speed up their timeline and save copies of the data trove elsewhere.

Said Best, “We try not to draw solid conclusions, but we are obviously aware of the possibilities” behind who might have tried to end their work before it started. – Rappler.com

Victor Barreiro Jr.

Victor Barreiro Jr is part of Rappler's Central Desk. An avid patron of role-playing games and science fiction and fantasy shows, he also yearns to do good in the world, and hopes his work with Rappler helps to increase the good that's out there.

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