Anonymous-affiliated hackers dropped a 1.7GB torrent of data onto file-sharing networks on Monday after hacking into the US Bureau of Justice Statistics.
The leaked files purportedly include "internal emails" as as well as other files supposedly culled from other compromised databases at the BJS, the US government agency that collates statistics on crimes in the US.
The release was part of a newly initiated Anonymous operation, dubbed Monday Mail Mayhem, and accompanied by a YouTube statement explaining that the release was geared towards "ending corruption".
But the Department of Justice downplayed the significance of the security breach, saying it had not affected its main systems.
“The department is looking into the unauthorized access of a website server operated by the Bureau of Justice Statistics that contained data from their public website,” the DoJ said in a canned statement, Security Week reports. “The Bureau of Justice Statistics website has remained operational throughout this time. The department’s main website, justice.gov, was not affected.”
The hackers claimed in their video statement: "We are releasing data to spread information, to allow the people to be heard and to know the corruption in their government."
Unusually part of the video is delivered by an initially unmasked man who dons a Guy Fawkes' mask in the closing seconds of the clip.
A Twitter profile associated with the hack (@planethacks) told us that the BJS was targeted in order to "to discredit the American government, and to point out the lack of security" on its sites. ®