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Pro-Iranian Hackers Hit U.N. Nuclear Agency, Publish Sensitive Info Online

Crime

Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Yukiya Amano attends a press conference after a UN atomic agency members meeting at the IAEA headquarters in Vienna on September 10, 2012. (Photo: AFP/Getty Images)

(TheBlaze/AP) -- The International Atomic Energy Agency acknowledged Tuesday that one of its servers has been hacked.

The U.N. nuclear watchdog commented Tuesday after a previously unknown group critical of Israel's nuclear weapons program posted the contact information for more than 100 experts working for the IAEA.

“Israel owns a practical nuclear arsenal, tied to a growing military body and it is not a member of international respected nuclear, biochemical and chemical agreements,” the group wrote, according to Business Insider.  “We ask these individuals to sign a petition demanding an open IAEA investigation into activities at [Israel’s Negev Nuclear Research Center near] Dimona."

It's more of a threat than a polite request, though.

The group continues: “The above list who technically help IAEA could be considered a partner in crime should an accident happen there...In such case ... Parastoo will publish whereabouts of every single one of these individuals alongside with bits of helpful personal and professional details.”

"Parastoo" appears to be the name of the group, and they took credit for the hack two days ago.  The word is Farsi for a swallow bird, and a common Iranian girl's name.

Israel is commonly acknowledged to possess nuclear weapons, but it has neither confirmed nor denied their existence.  Israeli officials say Iran is secretly working on its own nuclear nuclear weapons - something Tehran denies - and describes the Islamic republic as the greatest threat to the Middle East and the world.

Iran and Arab countries, however, say the Jewish state's nuclear capacities pose the greatest menace.

IAEA spokeswoman Gill Tudor said the agency "deeply regrets this publication of information stolen from an old server." She said the server had been shut down some time ago and agency experts had been working to eliminate any "possible vulnerability" in it even before it was hacked.

The IAEA was doing "everything possible to help ensure that no further information is vulnerable," she said in an email.

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