The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) declined to confirm the veracity of WikiLeaks’ alleged leak of electronic espionage, but said it threatened US citizens. “Such leaks not only endanger US personnel and operations, but also give adversaries tools and information that can harm us,” the CIA said in a statement from spokesman Heather Fritz Horniak.
The WikiLeaks portal, led by Australia’s Julian Assange, released a series of seven leaked installments on Wednesday, called “Vault 7” and has already published the chapter “Year Zero” which included 7,818 web pages with 943 attachments. Those first leaks describe an alleged hacking program by the US agency CIA, aimed at penetrating smartphones and computers connected to the Internet. “We are not going to comment on the authenticity of the alleged intelligence documents revealed by WikiLeaks or the status of any kind of investigation into the source of those documents,” the CIA said.
The spy agency explained that part of its mission to protect Americans from hostile nations, adversaries and terrorists is to be “innovative” in gathering intelligence information abroad. “The CIA’s activities are subject to strict supervision and fully respect US law and the Constitution,” the statement said.
The CIA recalls that it is prohibited by law from carrying out electronic espionage in US or US territory. WikiLeaks said its documents reveal that the CIA had managed to bypass the security protocols of a wide range of companies and products from Europe and the United States, such as Apple’s iPhone, Google’s Android phones or Samsung’s smart TVs.