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Hackers Release Personal Info On DC Police Officers After PD Refuses To Pay Ransom

Washington, DC – A ransomware gang attempting to extort $4 million from the DC Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) doxed at least 200 officers and civilians after negotiations between the department and the hackers “reached a dead end.”

Cyber experts say the leak is the largest hack on a law enforcement agency in U.S. history, according to FOX News.

A Russian-speaking ransomware syndicate known as Babuk said it leaked the information after the MPD allegedly refused to meet its $4 million demand, offering $100,000 instead, FOX News reported.

The hackers rejected the counteroffer, declaring the negations had “reached a dead end,” according to the news outlet.

The ransomware gang claimed on Thursday it published 250GB of data, including human resources and “Gang Database” information,” DCist reported.

Personal information pertaining to at least 200 law enforcement officers and citizens has been published, according to FOX News.

MPD did not disclose what personal information was leaked, but had confirmed Wednesday morning that information belonging to 20 officers was “released through the access obtained from MPD’s network by unauthorized parties,” FOX News reported.

MPD personnel files on former and current law enforcement officers include information such as psychological assessment reports, Social Security numbers, marriage histories, financial histories, residential information, prior drug use, fingerprints, polygraph test results, driver’s licenses, phone numbers, and dates of birth, according to NBC News.

Nearly every officer profile the MPD has is over 100 pages long, with one profile stretching on for more than 300 pages, according to the news outlet.

NBC News used leaked phone numbers to contact two of the MPD officers, both of whom said the department never told them their information had been specifically accessed.

MPD Chief Robert Contree sent out an email to department employees last week providing them with instructions on how to set up credit monitoring services for themselves, FOX News reported.

Shortly after the MPD was first hacked last month, Babuk claimed responsibility and published five officers’ profiles to validate their claims, according to NBC News.

The leak included approximately 500 pages of private information, WRC reported.

Those profiles were taken down after the ransomware gang allegedly began negotiating with the agency, according to NBC News.

The group also threatened to release the identities of confidential informants, FOX News reported.

Babuk published unverified screenshots of alleged communications with MPD on Tuesday.

The screenshots indicated Babuk threatened to publish more profiles unless MPD agreed to its $4 million demand, according to NBC News.

The agency allegedly said its “spending is closely controlled,” and offered up $100,000, which Babuk said was “unacceptable,” NBC News reported.

“The negotiations reached a dead end, the amount we were offered does not suit us,” the group declared, according to FOX News.

The hackers said on Thursday they have released “the full data of the police department,” Forbes reported.

“The police also wanted to pay us, but the amount turned out to be too small,” Babuk said, according to the news outlet. “Look at this wall of shame, you have every chance of not getting there, just pay us!”

Babuk posted two links titled “all” and “HR,” Forbes reported.

The ransomware gang said the files and data will remain public for the next eight months, even if MPD caves to its $4 million demand, DCist reported.

“There is no way back you had very many chances,” the group wrote.

The files posted Thursday include documents on investigations, intelligence briefings, suspects, crimes, letters of officer reinstatements, and a trove of other information, DCist reported.

TMPD declined to comment on the situation on Thursday, Forbes reported.

Written by
Holly Matkin

Holly is a former probation and parole officer who is married to a sheriff’s deputy. She is a regular contributor to Signature Montana magazine, and has written feature articles for Distinctly Montana magazine.

View all articles
Written by Holly Matkin

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