The U.N. nuclear watchdog says information stolen from one of
its former servers had been posted on a hacker website, and
it is taking "all possible steps" to ensure its computer
systems and data are protected.
The stolen information was contained in a statement by a
group with an Iranian-sounding name calling for an inquiry
into Israel's nuclear activities. The International Atomic
Energy Agency (IAEA) is investigating Iran's nuclear
The IAEA said the theft concerned "some contact details
related to experts working" with the Vienna-based agency but
it did not say who might have been behind the action.
A Western diplomat said the stolen data was not believed to
include information related to confidential work carried out
by the IAEA. One of the agency's tasks is preventing the
spread of nuclear weapons.
The statement posted in the name of Parastoo (swallow in
Farsi) included a large number of e-mail addresses and called
for the people to whom they belonged to sign a petition for
an "open" IAEA investigation into Israel's Dimona reactor.
The statement, dated November 25 and titled "Parastoo Hacks
IAEA", said: "Israel owns a practical nuclear arsenal, tied
to a growing military body."
Israel is widely believed to have the Middle East's only
atomic arsenal but neither confirms nor denies this under a
"strategic ambiguity" policy to deter Arab and Iranian foes.
The country is outside the Non-Proliferation Treaty that
would require it to forswear nuclear weapons and open up its
reactor in the southern desert town of Dimona.
Israel and the United States accuse Iran of seeking to
develop a nuclear weapons capability, a charge Tehran denies,
and says the Islamic state is the main proliferation threat.
Iran and Arab states say Israel's assumed atomic arsenal
threatens peace and security in the Middle East.
IAEA spokeswoman Gill Tudor said the agency "deeply regrets
this publication of information stolen from an old server
that was shut down some time ago".
Measures had been taken to address concern over possible
vulnerability in the server, she said.
"The IAEA's technical and security teams are continuing to
analyse the situation and do everything possible to help
ensure that no further information is vulnerable," Tudor