WildLeaks is a new platform and website that allows people with inside information about wildlife and forest crimes to report any and all information “while remaining anonymous and without going directly to law enforcement.” The founders of WildLeaks encourage informants to report names of wildlife traffickers, financial documents related to wildlife crimes, information about shipping companies, and much more.
A veritable supergroup of environmental investigation organizations called the Elephant Action League are largely responsible for WildLeaks. Global Eye, Oxpeckers Center of South Africa, and England’s EIA are all collaborative participants in WildLeaks, in addition to director of National Geographic’s Special Investigations, Bryan Christy, who made the following statement about their new agenda:
“The most important weapon the world has against international wildlife trackers is an informed public. The goal of WildLeaks is to give voice to the powerless, to both animals and the humans who risk their lives to protect them.”
Andrea Crosta, the head of the Elephant Action League, recently told National Geographic that WildLeaks was inspired by a recent investigation into the ivory trade. The experience convinced him that creating an independent, non-governmental entity was important because many individual insiders tied to trafficking have no method or avenue for reporting the information within their own territories. According to Crosta, the complex system set up by WildLeaks encrypts information with full security, and he considers the process far more anonymous and secure than using hotlines set up by government entities.
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