Local Hacker: MIT Students Worked With Soldier In Releasing Classified Information

Courtesy Adrian Lamo / Dana Bruinetti

A local hacker told CNN over the weekend two of his Facebook friends from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology assisted a US Army soldier in leaking classified information on war operations to a whistleblower website.

Carmichael resident Adrian Lamo told the cable news channel both students admitted in phone conversations to giving encryption software to US Army Private First Class Bradley Manning and showing the whistleblower how to use it in order to sneak classified information from military databases.

Lamo turned Manning in after the former hacker learned the Army private was responsible for leaking a video depicting American soldiers shooting unarmed civilians, including two Reuters photographers, during a gunfight in Afghanistan. Lamo, citing national security reasons, turned over AOL Instant Messenger chat logs to the FBI.

The military is now investigating whether or not Manning played a role in the leak of more than 70,000 documents acquired by the website Wikileaks. Wikileaks has not said whether or not Manning is responsible for either the video leaked months ago or the Afghanistan war dossier released last week.

Lamo told FOX40 News by instant messenger he believed the documents leaked late July came from the same system Manning had access to, but also said he did not believe the military whistleblower acted alone.

In the weekend CNN interview, Lamo said both MIT students he believes assisted Manning in leaking the classified material continue to post to his Facebook.com wall. Lamo refused to identify them to the news company because he alleges one of the two students has threatened him.

MIT did not release a comment to CNN when asked about the situation, but said they were monitoring the issue closely.

Lamo has conducted television, radio and print interviews from various public places in an attempt to remain secluded since admitting he turned Manning in weeks ago. The Carmichael native has complained online about various news agencies, including CBS and ABC, of calling him early in the morning and showing up to his residence unannounced.

FOX40 News attempted to contact Lamo by instant messenger Monday morning. Lamo appeared to be unavailable.