TaxSlayer hit with data loss following breach
Private data belonging to the Fraternal Order of Police was hacked and shared online iStock

The biggest police union in the US, the Fraternal order of Police, has been hacked and had its private data, including officers' names and addresses, dumped online. Hundreds of documents from the world's largest organisation of sworn law enforcement officers were stolen and shared on social media containing everything from employee details, police contracts and private forum posts critical of Barack Obama.

The FOP website was also taken down. While there has been no financial breach identified, most of the information in the hack is believed to be content that does not represent the FOP, which has 330,000 officers, positively.

The data breach was released as a torrent through a website operated by Thomas White who goes by the users name Cthulhu after he was contacted by a source who wishes to remain anonymous but wanted to show the public the material. The motive behind the hack is unknown but Cthulhu wrote on his blog: "The information should not be used to attack the police; it should be used to help them address their problems and correct them. A society cannot be at peace when the citizens and the enforcers of the law are at war."

Who was behind the FOP hack?

As to who was behind the attack is also unknown to authorities. FOP blamed hacking group Anonymous in a statement it posted to its Facebook page but members of the group have debunked that claim on social media, saying they have not had any involvement.

The FOP went on to say that "the attack appears to have originated outside of the United States". Chuck Canterbury, the FOP's national president, said it had traced the breach to an IP address in the UK and claimed the suspect had used a pseudo-encryption key on its system

Cthulhu, however, is privy to that information but is unwilling to divulge saying: "My word is my bond, and so I owe the source a degree of protection from the media, as was his/her wishes. If the source wishes to discuss his/her identity, they shall come forth in their own time."

With over 2.5GB of data being released publicly and a claimed 18GB in total being held back by Cthulhu we wait to see whether sensitive information is exposed. With Cthulhu posting a warning to authorities on his website if they try to arrest him saying "trust me when I say you might want to think long and hard before you do" it's a fairly strong hint there may be some very interesting information obtained in the hack. Or, it could be an a bluff in the bid to sure up his safety.