Australian police: Wikileaks has not broken the law

The whistle-blowing website Wikileaks has not broken any laws in Australia, according to an announcement made by the authorities on 17 December.On 30 November the Australian Federal Police began investigating Wikileaks as a result of the leaking of classified United States embassy cables on the Wikileaks.

The whistle-blowing website Wikileaks has not broken any laws in Australia, according to an announcement made by the authorities on 17 December.

On 30 November the Australian Federal Police began investigating Wikileaks as a result of the leaking of classified United States embassy cables on the Wikileaks.org website, which began on 28 November.

However, the Australian authorities have concluded that a full investigation is unnecessary as any alleged offence occurred outside of the country.

"The AFP has completed its evaluation of the material available and has not established the existence of any criminal offences where Australia would have jurisdiction," a spokeperson for the AFP said. "Where additional cables are published and criminal offences are suspected, these matters should be referred to the AFP for evaluation," the statement adds.

In July, the Pentagon confirmed that it was launching a probe led by the Army's Criminal Investigation Division into the leaking of confidential documents on the Wikileaks website.

A number of major payment processors such as Visa, Mastercard and PayPal ceased accepting or processing payments to the Wikileaks organisation on the basis that they violate the company's acceptable use policies which includes encouraging, promoting, facilitatating or instructing others to engage in illegal activity.

Retribution DDoS attacks, claimed to have been made by the internet group Anonymous hit Mastercard and Visa services, as well as taking the PayPal blog offline temporarily.

A hosting company based in Iceland said on 8 December that it would take immediate action against Visa and Mastercard over their decision not to process Wikileaks payments on the basis that it was costing them money.

"Not being able to receive money from the public for a week can cost Wikileaks 7 digit figures in losses, and DataCell as well, as it is unable to process any cards," DataCell chief executive Andreas Fink told ZDNet UK.

The Wikileaks page itself had to change servers earlier in December after Amazon Web Services (AWS) terminated its hosting relationship with the site on the basis that it violated its terms of service. The company denies that pressure from US authorities was behind the decision.

"We've been running AWS for over four years and have hundreds of thousands of customers storing all kinds of data on AWS. Some of this data is controversial, and that's perfectly fine. But, when companies or people go about securing and storing large quantities of data that isn't rightfully theirs, and publishing this data without ensuring it won't injure others, it's a violation of our terms of service, and folks need to go operate elsewhere," Amazon said in a blog post.

The site was hit further when EveryDNS.net stopped providing Wikileaks with DNS services as a result of DoS attacks that contravened acceptable use policy. Wikileaks then returned to the web on the Swiss domain Wikileaks.ch as well as other mirrors.