US officials are reportedly launching a criminal investigation into the WikiLeaks release of documents which reveal details about alleged CIA hacking techniques.
A federal criminal probe is being opened with both the CIA and FBI conducting reviews of the leak, CNN reported.
Authorities are trying to find out how WikiLeaks obtained the trove of documents on CIA hacking tools and whether they were leaked by an employee or contractor.
US officials are also trying to determine whether WikiLeaks has additional documents in its possession which it hasn’t published yet.
Meanwhile Germany’s chief federal prosecutor plans to examine the documents published online by Julian Assange’s anti-secrecy organisation on Tuesday.
Germany will launch an investigation if it finds evidence of wrongdoing, a spokesman for the federal prosecutor’s office announced.
The spokesman said: “We will initiate an investigation if we see evidence of concrete criminal acts or specific perpetrators.
“We’re looking at it very carefully.”
WikiLeaks said the documents showed that the CIA used the US consulate in Frankfurt as a covert hacking base.
It claimed agents had State Department cover while involved in operations in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
It also claimed that CIA hackers routinely travelled to Frankfurt with diplomatic, or ‘black’ passports, posing as staff helping with “technical consultations” at the consulate in Germany’s financial hub.
WikiLeaks also claimed the CIA hacked iPhones and Microsoft Windows, and worked with MI5 to turn Samsung TVs into microphones as part of a global hacking programme.
The documents were released as part of the organisation’s mysterious Year Zero series amid claims the CIA has been carrying out a global covert hacking programme that exploits US and European companies.
It even claimed the CIA was using hacked mobile phones and vehicle control systems in modern cars to carry out assasinations.