PHOENIX – There has been a major breach of the Arizona Department of Public Safety's security due to a hacker. Sensitive internal documents were leaked online Thursday afternoon, catching DPS by surprise.
"We believe they hacked the email accounts of eight of our officers, and the documents posted online were contained within those emails," explained DPS Capt. Steve Harrison.
The documents include gang intelligence briefings, cartel surveillance information, a draft report on racial profiling, and reports on militias and "right-wing extremists."
The hackers also released the names, email addresses, home addresses, cell phone numbers, and other sensitive information about the eight officers whose accounts were breached.
DPS officials say those officers have since received harassing phone calls from around the country.
There is a concern that the group might have additional contact information they have not yet released.
The underground group claiming responsibility is called LulzSec. Its members are also suspected of hacking into the CIA, PBS and Sony in recent weeks. Their motto is "Laughing at Security."
The group says it targeted DPS as a protest against SB 1070, Arizona's tough immigration law. DPS officials call the hackers misguided.
"As far as the 1070 connection, we had nothing to do with [the law]," Harrison said.
DPS has warned the Legislature, the governor's office and other law enforcement agencies to be on high alert. The agency's email system is shut down while IT and computer forensics teams investigate the security breach.