By Kim Zetter
January 28, 2009
Who needs to hack a database when you can get information the
old-fashioned, low-tech way?
The U.S. consulate in Israel held an auction in December 2005 to get rid
of old furniture and reportedly sold cabinets containing hundreds of
files with Social Security numbers of U.S. Marines and state department
staff stationed in Israel. The files also included U.S. State Department
bank account numbers and documents tracking the U.S. funding of local
political movements, such as Shalom Achshav, Peace Now.
Among the files was a dossier marked "Secret" detailing an encounter
between a U.S. Marine and a young Israeli woman in a Jerusalem hotel
The woman who bought the filing cabinets, an American-Israeli, held on
silently to her trove until last fall when an event involving her son's
Israeli army unit angered her and she approached reporters. The U.S.
consulate asked for her to return the files, but she refused until the
Israeli police intervened and threatened her with unspecified charges.
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