The long anticipated and feared document dump from Bermuda's Appleby law firm, specialists in offshoring who cater to very high-net-worth individuals, has dropped. 13.4 million documents are said to figure in the "Paradise Papers" leak, whose source remains unknown.
Appleby has been preparing its clients since late last month for the exposure, which the law firm characterizes as "an illegal hack," not a leak (presumably thereby ruling out document theft by a rogue insider). The law firm began to prepare its response when it was contacted in October by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, who sought comment on the documents.
Among those mentioned in dispatches are prominent UK public figures, including members of the Royal Family. Of interest to US audiences are documents that appear to show the way investment money from Russian oligarchs, and possibly the Russian government itself, passed into Silicon Valley. The New York Times reports significant Russian investment in both Facebook and Twitter going back as far as 2010.
Kaspersky says its security software copied files that did not pose a threat to the systems it was protecting, a development that doesn't look good for Kaspersky. Many of its commercial partners seem to be cutting Kaspersky loose—the company has removed the names of sixty-seven "Tech Partners" (including Amazon and Microsoft) from its corporate website.
The US Senate Majority Leader, Senator McConnell (R-Kentucky) says Google, Facebook, and other tech companies should help the US retaliate against Russia for attempts to influence US elections in 2016.