Book: WikiLeaks asked hackers to spy on Iceland government

A new book has alleged that Wikileaks made connections with hacker group LulzSec in an attempt to expose corruption in Iceland. Forbes London bureau chief Parmy Olson claims in his book We Are Anonymous that WikiLeaks members contacted hackers because they wanted help “infiltrating several Icelandic corporate and government sites”.

Olson alleges that WikiLeaks wanted the emails of government officials hacked in an attempt to expose corruption or find evidence of a plot to unfairly target the whistle-blowing website. Founder Julian Assange also posted tweets in support of LulzSec in June 2011 before quickly deleting them because, “he didn’t want to be publicly associated with what were clearly black hat hackers”, Olson writes.

The book suggests that the website, which claims it does not solicit hacking, had a grudge against Iceland after a WikiLeaks member and a journalist supporting the organisation were arrested in the country. The government also denied them access to an underground data centre they had been bidding for.

Olson claims that WikiLeaks offered LulzSec encrypted government data in exchange for the service and was considering working with the hackers in a ‘black hat’ capacity, where LulzSec would publish information deemed too risky by WikiLeaks.

Last week, Assange lost his appeal against extradition from the UK to Sweden to face rape and sexual assault allegations. He denies the charges and claims they are politically motivated and part of an overall scheme to have him extradited to the US to face charges related to the website’s activities.