WikiLeaks appears to have used a hidden, cryptic message to inform the public they’re doing okay in light of recent rumors that the organization has been compromised.
In a cunning move, a Bitcoin address connected to WikiLeaks sent out a series of payments with a hidden message coded into them which reads, “We’re Fine. 8 Chan Post [is] Fake.”
Take a look:
Did you catch it? Take a look again:
See the webpage where that information appears for yourself here.
The message appears to reference a recent 8chan post by an anonymous user who claims to be “one of the 15 WikiLeaks personnel that were raided at the same time Julian’s internet was cut at the Ecuadorian embassy.”
Here is one screenshot of the 8chan posts apparently referenced in the WikiLeaks Bitcoin transaction:According to the 8chan messages posted on November 17, 2016, “Julian is missing as are most of the WikiLeaks personnel that I had regular communications with.”
The anonymous poster also claimed that “WikiLeaks personnel are NOT in control of the official Twitter account” and that, similarly, “The WikiLeaks IAMA on Reddit was NOT conducted by WikiLeaks personnel.”
However, as one 8chan user began to question the supposed WikiLeaks poster, the story became more incredible and harder to believe.
“I want proofs,” demanded one user, “You’re not using tor for example which raises questions.”
To this, the supposed WikiLeaks poster replied by insisting Tor was not a safe means of communication.
The 8chan posts also included a desperate plea to other whistleblowers not to submit leaks to his organization, “I am scared for my life and in hiding, and it’s possible I could be tracked despite my precautions. However, the lives of whistleblowers are in danger and I have an ethical responsibility to warn them. We are NOT in control of our infrastructure. Do NOT submit leaks, you WILL be identified.”
However, the incredible claims, which generated some buzz online, now seem fabricated if the coded message in the WikiLeaks’s bitcoin address is authentic.
Speaking of which, several questions remain related to the authenticity of this message.
The blockchain that contains it is apparently owned by WikiLeaks – and they have evidently used it to spread secret messages before, according to Bitcoin experts on this Reddit forum.
But why would WikiLeaks choose to do that for a message as important as one related to the wellbeing of their staff? Further, can we be sure the Bitcoin account wasn’t compromised?
As we have documented extensively, rumors have swirled for months now about a possible WikiLeaks compromise, including questions about Julian Assange’s whereabouts, or if he’s even alive.
So much so that the official WikiLeaks Twitter account had to calm the internet’s speculations:
Thousands keep demanding Assange proof of life. Not unreasonable. He’s in a tough spot and is WikiLeaks best known validator. Preference?
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 24, 2016
However, despite the majority of voters requesting a video, that video was never provided, which of course only fueled further concerns.
So what, then, is the purpose of the Bitcoin ledger message? Are we to assume that the organization’s Twitter page is compromised and they have no other means of communicating?
Theories about Assange’s whereabouts are not just baseless conspiracy theories, either.
On April 16, 2016, Assange’s U.N. lawyer, John Jones QC died from a supposed suicide after allegedly jumping in front of a train.
On October 16 2016, John Kerry visited the UK to personally pressure Ecuador to stop Assange from publishing documents about Clinton. On the same day, Julian’s internet connection was severed, and still hasn’t been restored.
Watch this video to learn more about the speculations surrounding the current status of WikiLeaks: