Hackers claim to have Romney's tax returns


A group of hackers say they have stolen Mitt Romney's tax returns.



An anonymous group of hackers is claiming to have obtained Mitt Romney's tax returns.

The person or persons behind the claim says they were able to obtain the 1040 papers by accessing computers in the Franklin office of the professional services firm PricewaterhouseCoopers.

In a post on the file sharing website Pastebin.com, the hacker said:

"Romney's 1040 tax returns were taken from the PWC office 8/25/2012 by gaining access to the third floor via a gentleman working on the 3rd floor of the building. Once on the 3rd floor, the team moved down the stairs to the 2nd floor and setup shop in an empty office room. During the night, suite 260 was entered, and all available 1040 tax forms for Romney were copied. A package was sent to the PWC on suite 260 with a flash drive containing a copy of the 1040 files, plus copies were sent to the Democratic office in the county and copies were sent to the GOP office in the county at the beginning of the week also containing flash drives with copies of Romney's tax returns before 2010. A scanned signature image for Mitt Romney from the 1040 forms were scanned and included with the packages, taken from earlier 1040 tax forms gathered and stored on the flash drives."

The group said they will release the files to the public on September, 28 if they are not paid $1 million in bitcoins, an online currency. 

While it seems like a simple enough ransom deal, Romney may have a few competitors to deal with. 

According to PC Mag, the group of hackers also opened the door for a competitor to pay $1 million first to insure that the files are released to the public. In the end of their Pastebin message the group said, "Who-ever is the winner does not matter to us."

According to a report in the Tennessean, The Williamson County Republican Party contacted police after receiving a package that allegedly holds copies of the Republican presidential nominees tax returns. The local Democratic party office said he too received a package. 

In the end though Romney may have nothing to worry about. According to US News and World Report, PricewaterhouseCoopers claims the files were never taken from the premises. A spokesman for the company said, "We are aware of the allegations that have been made regarding improper access to our systems. We are working closely with the United States Secret Service, and at this time there is no evidence that our systems have been compromised or that there was any unauthorized access to the data in question."