Hackers try to blackmail Mitt Romney with his own tax returns

Technology News Blog

Is there some great big secret buried in Mitt Romney's old tax returns? Though the Republican candidate for president has made his most recent years' returns public, Democrats have been demanding he release them all, presumably so they can mine the forms for things to attack him over. But maybe it's not Democrats Romney has to worry about: A group of computer hackers claim to have stolen Romney's tax returns from accounting firm PWC, and are threatening to release them to the public if the former Massachusetts governor does not fork over a million dollars.

According to the hackers, the break-in occured at a Tennessee PWC office on August 25. They claim to have gained access to the third floor via a man who works in the building. Once inside, the team allegedly entered a second floor suite containing a number of Mitt Romney's tax documents. The thieves supposedly copied all Romney's available financial documents, put them on encrypted flash drives, and mailed them to the local Republican and Democratic parties.

The poorly written nature of the note suggests we may not be dealing with a group of "Ocean's Eleven"-type criminal masterminds. Further, since the hackers have failed to release proof of their crime — a theft PWC denies occurred, by the way — many believe the crooks to be attempting to bluff their way to a million-dollar payday. Unfortunately for the hackers, the fact that their escapades are being reported by the press suggests that their felony is not quite going according to plan.

The U.S. Secret Service is looking into the alleged break-in.

[Image credit: Laptop fingerprint with crime via Shutterstock]
[via Gawker]

This article was written by Fox Van Allen and originally appeared on Tecca

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