Most of the Paradise Papers came from offshore legal firm Appleby, which confirms the leak came from a hack on its network and no insiders were involved.
The Paradise Papers is a collection of more than 13.4 million financial documents leaked online that has shed light on how major figures in the world of business, politics, entertainment, and sport move their funds through offshore tax havens.
Many stories emerged from the huge trove of documents, such as the allegations that Russia funded Facebook and Twitter investments through a business associate of Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior White House adviser.
“The investments were made through a Russian technology magnate, Yuri Milner, who also holds a stake in a company co-owned by Kushner, Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior White House adviser.” reported The Guardian.
Other documents analyzed by the BBC linked the Donald Trump’s commerce secretary, Wilbur Ross, to a shipping company firm transporting oil and gas for a firm whose shareholders include Vladimir Putin’s son-in-law and two men subject to US sanctions.
The Paradise Papers also revealed the £10m investment made by the UK Queen into funds in the Cayman Islands and Bermuda.
The documents were first obtained by the German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung, the same that analyzed for first the Panama Papers last year.
The German newspaper did not reveal the source of the leak, however, Appleby blamed external hackers for the intrusion in its systems.
In a statement, Appleby said the leaked information came from a criminal hack on its computer systems, a subsequent forensic investigation excluded the incident was caused by insiders.
“We wish to reiterate that our firm was not the subject of a leak but of a serious criminal act. This was an illegal computer hack. Our systems were accessed by an intruder who deployed the tactics of a professional hacker and covered his/her tracks to the extent that a forensic investigation by a leading international Cyber & Threats team concluded that there was no definitive evidence that any data had left our systems. This was not the work of anybody who works at Appleby.” reported Appleby.
Appleby highlighted that it has done anything unlawful, anyway the incident could trigger serious legal repercussions against the company.
Pierluigi Paganini is member of the ENISA (European Union Agency for Network and Information Security) Threat Landscape Stakeholder Group and Cyber G7 Group, he is also a Security Evangelist, Security Analyst and Freelance Writer.
Editor-in-Chief at "Cyber Defense Magazine", Pierluigi is a cyber security expert with over 20 years experience in the field, he is Certified Ethical Hacker at EC Council in London. The passion for writing and a strong belief that security is founded on sharing and awareness led Pierluigi to find the security blog "Security Affairs" recently named a Top National Security Resource for US.
Pierluigi is a member of the "The Hacker News" team and he is a writer for some major publications in the field such as Cyber War Zone, ICTTF, Infosec Island, Infosec Institute, The Hacker News Magazine and for many other Security magazines.
Author of the Books "The Deep Dark Web" and “Digital Virtual Currency and Bitcoin”.