Feeds

WikiLeaks on verge of financial collapse, founder says

Whistleblower to cease whistleblowing (for now)

High performance access to file storage

WikiLeaks will temporarily stop publishing so members can address a cash shortage that could cause the whistleblower site to financially collapse by the end of the year, founder Julian Assange said on Monday.

The dire financial picture comes 10 months after PayPal, MasterCard, Visa, and other payment services significantly curtailed WikiLeaks' ability to raise funds by refusing to process payments from supporters. Assange told journalists in London that donations to the site have all but dried up since the embargo was put in place. Last year, the average cumulative total was about 100,000 euros, compared with 6,000 euros to 7,000 euros this year.

“If WikiLeaks does not find a way to remove this blockade we will simply not be able to continue by the turn of the new year,” Assange said at a press conference. “If we don't knock down the blockade we simply will not be able to continue.”

WikiLeaks has about 20 employees and needs about $3.5 millions to sustain it through 2013, he added.

A PayPal executive said in December that the decision to block payments to WikiLeaks came after officials with the US State Department warned executives that WikiLeaks was engaged in illegal activity. WikiLeaks has since sued Visa and MasterCard over the blockade.

With grass-roots fundraising thwarted, WikiLeaks has recently begun focusing on new sources for donations. Lunch with the 40-year-old Assange and a laptop he used to organize a dump of US diplomatic cables have both been auctioned off. He said he was now looking to a “constellation of wealthy individuals” to keep his site running.

Perhaps WikiLeaks' best-known wealthy benefactor is Frontline Club founder Vaughan Smith. Assange has spent the past few months under house arrest in Smith's mansion in Eastern England. A decision on whether Assange will be extradited to Sweden is pending.

More from The Guardian and the Associated Press is here and here. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
It may be ILLEGAL to run Heartbleed health checks – IT lawyer
Do the right thing, earn up to 10 years in clink
France bans managers from contacting workers outside business hours
«Email? Mais non ... il est plus tard que six heures du soir!»
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.