Friday, 12 April 2019 04:49

US accuses Assange of password cracking, seeks his extradition Featured

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US accuses Assange of password cracking, seeks his extradition Pixabay

Hours after his arrest, the US has unveiled an indictment against WikiLeaks founder and publisher Julian Assange, seeking his extradition to face charges of computer hacking and being involved in a compromise of classified information.

The indictment claimed Assange had conspired with former US intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning to assist in cracking a password on US Department of Defence computers on a network meant for classified information.

Assange was arrested at the Ecuadorian embassy in London on Thursday night. He had been taking refuge there since June 2012 after having been granted asylum by Ecuador.

His arrest came after Quito withdrew his asylum and London Metropolitan Police were invited into the embassy to take him to jail.

The US indictment said: "During the conspiracy, Manning and Assange engaged in real-time discussions regarding Manning’s transmission of classified records to Assange. The discussions also reflect Assange actively encouraging Manning to provide more information.

"During an exchange, Manning told Assange that 'after this upload, that’s all I really have got left'. To which Assange replied, 'curious eyes never run dry in my experience'.”

Appearing in court in London shortly after his arrest, Assange was found guilty of skipping bail in 2012 and remanded to custody. He will appear in court again to be sentenced and faces up to 12 months in prison for this offence.

He was separately charged in relation to the US indictment and will appear in court on 2 May in connection with these charges.

The US indictment says the charges levelled at Assange carry a maximum prison term of five years.

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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