FBI: Law enforcement now a target for hacktivists

The FBI is warning police and law enforcement officials to be on guard, amid threats by hacktivists to leak their personal information.

(Image: CNET/CBS Interactive)

The FBI is warning law enforcement officials, officers, and agents that they are increasingly being targeted by hacktivists.

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In an online bulletin at the Internet Crime Complaint Center, which works in conjunction with the FBI and other agencies, the agency warned that hacking collectives were "effective at leveraging open source, publicly available information identifying officers, their employers, and their families."

"With this in mind, officers and public officials should be aware of their online presence and exposure," the notice read.

The notice specifically warned of doxing (when a person or group will collate personal information on a person, like phone numbers and addresses, and publish it online without permission), which could be used to identify and target an individual.

"Recent activity suggests family members of law enforcement personnel and public officials are also at risk for cyber attacks and doxing activity," said the notice. "Targeted information may include personally identifiable information and public information and pictures from social media Web sites."

It's not clear exactly where the bulletin stemmed from, or if there has been a direct threat to target law enforcement officials. The notice did not warn of a specific threat, nor did it name any particular group or individual.

The FBI did not return a request for comment.

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