As anti-police activists around the country demand the doxing of law enforcement, one group is stepping up to answer the call. Malicious hackers have targeted more than twenty police departments and law enforcement organizations across the country in the past two months, releasing identifying information that could jeopardize the safety of tens of thousands of officers, Breitbart News has learned.
Anonymous hackers have published information on employees of numerous Southern California police departments, including the Los Angeles Police Department and L.A. County Sheriff’s Office.
They have also published the internal passwords for employees of Maryland’s Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services, which oversees the state’s prison system. In another case, hackers offered to find the personal and work email addresses of Minneapolis Police Department employees, including the department’s chief spokesman. It remains unclear if anyone has taken up their offer.
In the files and message board posts reviewed by Breitbart News, the hackers didn’t ask for money, suggesting that their motive isn’t financial. Instead, some appear to have political or ideological reasons. The most active of the hacking groups, which goes by the name “Kelvin Security,” has doxed members of the Trump family, revealing email addresses and phone numbers for the president and first lady.
The data breaches come as left-wing activists are amping up calls to dox law enforcement, especially those officers who have been brought in to put an end to weeks of violent rioting in cities including Portland, Louisville, and Seattle. Federal officials revealed last week that 38 officers were doxed in Portland, leading to the removal of identifying badges on uniforms.
Doxing is the search for and publishing of private or identifying information about someone, usually with malicious intent. Doxing has become a tool of the mainstream left, which has launched an all-out offensive against law enforcement in concert with groups like Black Lives Matter and Antifa.
“To target or share private information about a police officer simply because of their profession is especially disturbing,” said New York State Senator Patrick M. Gallivan (R) in a statement to Breitbart News. Gallivan recently introduced a bill that would criminalize the doxing of police officers in New York.
“As a former New York State Trooper and twice elected county sheriff, I am dismayed by what we have seen over the past several months. The unwarranted attacks on law enforcement officers across the country should be a concern of all law-abiding citizens. We have to do more to protect our police officers at every level if we expect them to protect our communities and our citizens.”
Anti-law enforcement rhetoric has become increasingly heated, with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) calling federal agents “storm troopers” and actress-activist Alyssa Milano smearing members of the NYPD as the “Gestapo.”
Left-wing activist and the Weekly List podcaster Amy Siskind has demanded that doxers target not only federal officers but also their families. “It would be helpful if we could start to identify these storm troopers,” she tweeted, telling her followers to go after “maybe a wife and family. They should be publicly named.”
Police departments normally don’t publicize the names or contact information of officers for security reasons. But their information networks tend to lack the same level of security used in corporate environments, leaving them vulnerable to bad actors, according to one information security specialist who asked to remain anonymous.
One of the largest data dumps in recent weeks has targeted multiple police departments in Southern California. Hackers have released the names, email addresses, and job titles of officers in the LAPD, L.A. County Sheriff’s Office, Santa Monica Police, Long Beach Police, California Highway Patrol, and more. The file contains information on more than 14,000 officers in the L.A. metropolitan area, as well as members of the FBI and the L.A. District Attorney’s Office.
Hackers posted the data on June 26, which was around the time when L.A. was in the midst of intense anti-police protests and riots. When contacted by phone and email, an LAPD spokesman declined to comment.
In another breach, Maryland’s Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services was attacked in June by a hacker who published a file containing employee names, email addresses, and internal passwords.
An individual claiming to be the hacker posted an ominous message after releasing the data. “I hacked into a Maryland government website, which was used by the police and due to their poor security managed to obtain their whole database. Expect more from me soon, friends,” the presumed hacker wrote.
When reached by email, a department spokesman declined to comment.
Hackers often take advantage of political and social upheavals to draw maximum publicity. After the 2016 presidential election, hackers doxed nearly 9,000 Homeland Security employees, publishing their names, phone numbers, and email addresses. The hackers prefaced the data dump with the message: “This is for Palestine, Ramallah, West Bank, Gaza, This is for the child that is searching for an answer.”
A spokesperson for the department didn’t respond to a request for comment. Ironically, the DHS issued a warning in June that doxers are stepping up efforts to target law enforcement, citing a recent incident in Kentucky where a social media user posted a photo containing the personal information of several law enforcement officials.
Many of the hackers are using RaidForums to publicly post their files. The site, which describes itself as a “database sharing and marketplace forum” for “database breaches and leaks,” is a popular destination for shady cyber actors looking to disseminate or sell their data.
Doxing law enforcement isn’t considered a crime in many states and cities, but that could change as the wave of anti-police riots continues to rock the country. New York State Sen. Gallivan’s bill would make doxing a police officer or peace officer a “class D” felony, which would carry a maximum sentence of seven years in jail.
“We owe it to our police and peace officers to provide them with adequate protections so that they can perform their necessary duties,” Sen. Gallivan says in the bill.
The mayor of Kansas City, Missouri, has also introduced an ordinance that would make it a crime to dox law enforcement or elected officials.
“Our public employees have a right to get home safely and their families should be free from harm,” Mayor Quinton Lucas (D) wrote on Facebook. “We welcome free expression in Kansas City and disagreement on issues of public concern, including public safety. We do not welcome intimidation of people doing the jobs we hire them to do or intimidation of their spouses and children.”