German politician hack
Hacker hands, first person view, at work on a code.

Hackers have published the personal data and documents of hundreds of German politicians and celebrities online.

The data breach was announced by the German government. It included personally identifiable information of politicians and other public figures, and included credit card numbers, email addresses, mobile phone numbers, chat transcripts, and photos of identification.

The information was leaked over the last several weeks on a Twitter account called G0d, and targeted all major German political parties with the exception of the right-wing Alternative for Germany, or AfD. The data dump is believed to have been released in the form of an “advent calendar” to coincide with the Christmas holiday season, but it did not receive widespread attention until the evening of Thursday, January 3.

German Minister of Justice Katarina Barley referred to the breach as a “serious attack,” commenting that its authors “want to damage confidence in [German] democracy and its institutions” in a statement to Deutsche-Presse-Agentur.

Investigations into the identity of the hacker or hackers is underway, but initial reports suggest that the attack compromised Facebook and Twitter accounts in a social engineering campaign.