If history is any gauge, this is probably the first of several incidents like this.

The Register – which is worth reading twice a day for its insanely funny headlines if nothing else – is reporting that a hacker (hacktivist?), possibly British, who goes by the handle Neo, has gotten his hands on tax documents for about 1,000 companies and is tweeting the salaries of Latvian bank managers and other execs to Latvian TV.

His country, like many, has put into place austerity measures in the face of the global economic meltdown. The Latvian unemployment rate is 23 percent. That’s the scale of the great depression of the 30s in the U.S.!

He revealed:

  • Managers at Latvian banks that got state bailouts did not take salary cuts as they were supposed to.
  • Senior execs have taken huge bonuses at state-run businesses that have hit bottom.
  • Some government officials are taking home salaries of $4,000 per month when school teachers’ pay was cut to $600 per month.

Neo says he’s part of a group called the “Fourth Awakening People’s Army.”

I wonder what the other three “Awakenings” were. Sounds Chinese.

The Register’s head on the story:

“Latvian hacker tweets hard on banking whistle”
“Fat cat pay leaked all over the Baltics”

Love it!

BBC story here.