WikiLeaks Volunteer Also Worked As Paid FBI Informant

Siggi Thordarson, an 18-year-old volunteer for WikiLeaks, walked into the U.S. Embassy in Reykjavik in August 2011. He walked out an FBI informant, receiving around $5,000 for three months’ work.

Perhaps one of the more unlikely FBI informants is an 18-year-old Icelandic boy who worked as a volunteer for WikiLeaks, and earned $5,000 in three months while simultaneously reporting on the goings-on at the whistleblowing website. Wired’s Threat Level has an the amazing story.


Sigidur “Siggy” Thoradson was the first known FBI informant inside WikiLeaks. He joined WikiLeaks at the young age of 17, where he had direct access to Julian Assange, and was in charge of the WikiLeaks chat room. Thoradson was debriefed four times, handing over eight hard drives packed with chat logs, video and other data, says Wired.

Stephen Aftergood of the Federation of American Scientists’ Project on Government Secrecy says Thoradson’s double life shows just how single-minded the agency was about pursuing Julian Assange.

“It’s a sign that the F.B.I. views WikiLeaks as a suspected criminal organization rather than a news organization. WikiLeaks was something new, so I think the FBI had to make a choice at some point as to how to evaluate it: Is this The New York Times, or is this something else? And they clearly decided it was something else.”

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My writing career has taken me all round the houses over the past decade and a half--from grumpy teens and hungover rock bands in the U.K., where I was born, via celebrity interviews, health, tech and fashion in Madrid and Paris, before returning to London, where I now live. For the past five years I've been writing about technology and innovation for U.S.