Offshore law firm Appleby hacked in Paradise Papers leak

Millions of documents held by organisations including offshore law firm Appleby have been stolen in what has been dubbed the Paradise Papers leak.

The firm said in a statement that its computers were hacked by an intruder “who deployed the tactics of a professional hacker and covered his/her tracks to the extent that a forensic investigation by a leading international cyber & threats team concluded that there was no definitive evidence that any data had left our systems”.

The firm added that the hack was not carried out by anyone who works at Appleby.

Claims made by the International Consortium of Independent Journalists (ICIJ) that the firm failed to reply to its questions were, Appleby said, false and it has produced extracts of their correspondence and the ICIJ’s acknowledgement.

“We take client confidentiality extremely seriously and we are disappointed that the media has chosen to use information which has emanated from material obtained illegally. This has very little to do with accurate and fair reporting, and everything to do with the pursuit of a political agenda. These journalists will not permit fairness and accuracy to get in the way of their political objectives,” the firm stated.

It added that it is a global organisation and that it is “not correct to state that Appleby has its headquarters in Bermuda”.

The statement concludes: “We are a law firm which advises clients on legitimate and lawful ways to conduct their business. We operate in jurisdictions which are regulated to the highest international standards. We do not tolerate illegal behaviour and we reiterate our commitment to responsible business conduct. We are committed to the highest standards of client service and confidentiality.  It is what we stand for, this commitment remains unequivocal.”