Swedish police raid WikiLeaks web host

By Stephen C. Webster
Tuesday, October 2, 2012 9:32 EDT
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WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange via AFP
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Swedish police raided the offices of web host PeRiQuito AB (PRQ) on Monday, but one of the company’s highest-profile customers, anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks, was apparently not the target as supporters first thought.

PRQ is known for its anonymous web hosting services, and claims that their dedication to free speech is absolute. Other sites hosted by the company include The Pirate Bay, Torrent Hound, numerous private bittorrent trackers and even the North America Man-Boy Love Association. The company says it often knows nothing about its clientele and even accepts cash payments to avoid having customers tracked through the baking system.

Police reportedly seized four servers from the company, causing technical problems that resulted in a swath of outages across piracy websites. PRQ is “one of a number of ISPs used by WikiLeaks,” the website confirmed on Twitter shortly after WikiLeaks.si went down. WikiLeaks.org was still accessible on Tuesday morning.

Even though WikiLeaks wasn’t targeted in the raid, Swedish authorities said that a series of cyber-attacks that hit government websites in the raid’s aftermath were connected to supporters of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

Assange is currently wanted in Sweden for questioning over allegations of sexual assault, but he’s been hiding out in the Ecuadorian embassy in London over fears that Swedish authorities may extradite him to the U.S., where prosecutors have reportedly convened a grand jury to consider espionage charges against him.

Photo: Shutterstock.com, all rights reserved.

Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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