Anonymous claims to have hacked the United States' State Department website and captured a database, which has now been published on the Internet.
The data dump by the hacktivists contains the names and email addresses of State Department consular and careers staffers and in some cases, their phone numbers and date of birth.
Usernames are also found in the database dump. Searching state.gov and other sites shows that several email addresses and other data match State Department staffers in the United States and legations around the world.
This includes a senior officer whose name also features in one of the leaked US State department cables published by Wikileaks.
The hack doesn't appear to have been very hard to accomplish, as the hacktivists said "F.Y.I all of this data is viewable using a few terminal commands, it's just sad that ANY part of the database basically can be publicly viewed by anyone. Information is free, as we always say."
Revenge for the arrests by authorities of several members of the Lulzsec group appears to be the motive for the hack, along with the suicide of online activist Aaron Swartz, who faced a lengthy jail term after releasing copyrighted legal texts on the Internet, according to a statement accompanying the data dump:
"Our reasons for this attack are very simple. You've imprisoned or either censored our people. We will not tolerate things as such. You don't see us going around censoring everything that is inappropriate or we do not like. Basically, you tried to put an end to us and you got owned, there's nothing more you can say or do.
"You took away Topiary, Avunit, Neuron, Pwnsauce, lolspoon, Aaron Swartz shall we go on? Heck you think this makes us weak? We are only growing stronger because of the fact that you are forcing us to revolt. When the lions roar you will hear them. And when it's feeding time you'll be our dinner.
"Aaron Swartz this is for you, this is for Operation Last Resort."
iTNews has contacted the US State Department for comment and will update the story when we receive it.