A hacker-group affiliated to Islamic State (Isis) has claimed to have planted a mole in the Ministry of Defence and is threatening to leak secret British intelligence data. The group, which goes by the name Islamic State Hacking Division, had earlier published an anti-drone warfare document, in which it had listed US Air Force drone pilots – believed to be involved in air strikes against terrorists in Iraq and Syria – as potential targets of the militants
In a tweet (which has now been removed), the group said: "In our next leak we may even disclose secret intelligence the Islamic State has just received from a source the brothers in the UK have spent some time acquiring from the Ministry of Defence in London as we slowly and secretly infiltrate England and the USA online and off."
However, a Sunday Times report claimed that the information released by the hackers pertaining to US military personnel, appeared to have been gathered from publicly available sources like Facebook and was not a result of any hack.
A Ministry of Defence spokesperson said: "While we don't comment on cyber threats, Britain is a world leader in cyber security and we are investing more than ever before in the UK's capabilities to protect our national interest. Our increasing defence budget means that we can stay ahead of our adversaries in cyberspace while also investing in conventional capabilities."
Meanwhile, Pentagon spokesperson, major Adrian Rankine-Galloway explained:"We are aware that Isil [Isis] and other terrorist organisations have periodically purported to release personal information on US service members and military members of our coalition partners involved in operations against Isil. We take proactive measures to protect our service members and their families and keep them apprised of changes to the security situation."
"We will not comment on the authenticity of the information in question, and this will have no effect on operations against Isil," he added.