What is Vault7? WikiLeaks teases new 'Year Zero' leak set to be released imminently

Cryptic tweets and speculation surround latest publication from Julian Assange.

Assange has been teasing the release of 'Vault7' over the past few weeks Reuters/Valentin Flauraud

WikiLeaks, the whistleblowing platform managed by Julian Assange, is teasing a fresh release of documents under the name 'Vault7 Year Zero' that is set to be published this week (7 March 2017) and may be linked to material from the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

Speculation has mounted in recent weeks after the WikiLeaks twitter account made numerous references to the mysterious term. The anti-secrecy organisation added fuel to the fire on 4 February, when the account posted a cryptic update: "What is Vault7?"

Then, in a series of updates, WikiLeaks alluded to a number of different events by posting images. One included a set of 'wanted' posters the US government created for Julian Assange, WikiLeaks' source Chelsea Manning and NSA leaker Edward Snowden.

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On 7 March, the day of release, the organisation promised to stream a press conference at 1pm (GMT) and tweeted: "Today's pending publication contains elements that will be of interest to all tech journalists."

It posted links to previous CIA publications.

On social media, WikiLeaks also touted a new "publishing model" which is to pre-distribute the full trove of documents to its followers so everyone can have a copy at hand. Then, when Assange wants to green-light the release, he can release the password at will.

It is likely the term Year Zero signifies the release will become a series of publications, much like the John Podesta email release, which came in numerous batches over the period of weeks leading up to the 2016 US presidential election last November.

WikiLeaks dominated the headlines after becoming embroiled in the political scandal by releasing nearly 20,000 internal emails from the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

The US government accused the website of having links to the Kremlin.

The US intelligence community, including the CIA, said WikiLeaks obtained its emails from hackers working on behalf of Russian intelligence, specifically a notorious cyber-espionage unit called APT28, or Fancy Bear. To date, Assange has denied the involvement of any state actor.

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The WikiLeaks founder remains under political asylum in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, where he still presides over the organisation's releases. Recently, after Chelsea Manning was granted clemency by president Obama, rumours swirled he would hand himself over to police.

Keep and eye on IBTimes UK through the day to find out more about Vault7.

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