Mo Farah.

Mo Farah has sensitive medical data released by cyber-hacking group 'Fancy Bears'

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Today, news has broken of a security breach in the database of the World Anti-Doping Agency resulting in sensitive medical information being leaked to the public that directly relates to British four-time Olympic gold medalist Mo Farah.

Russian online hacking group 'Fancy Bears' are said to be responsible for the leak, with the same group already leaking the information of nine other athletes in a previous instance.

Farah is only one of the latest bunch of athletes to have had their confidential medical information made public, in this, the latest internet security breach to reach the mainstream media.


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Other athletes to have fallen victim to the Fancy Bears include two 'Tour de France' winning cyclists in Chris Froome and Bradley Wiggins, and also 14-time Grand Slam winning tennis champion Rafael Nadal's name appears on the list. 

The leak gives details of two separate occasions where Farah was granted a therapeutic use exemption (TUE) for the corticosteroid triamcinolone in October 2008, and another occurring in July 2014, when he was placed on a morphine drip as a result of collapsing after a training exercise.

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A damning element to Farah's case in this instance may be the fact that, back in 2015, amid controversy over the methods employed by his coach Alberto Salazar, he admitted to the use of a TUE once, whereas the documents leaked suggest that he has had two.

On the incident, a spokeswoman for the runner said: “Like everyone in Team GB, he was notified about the potential release of private medical data.

“While he believes this sort of information shouldn’t be published without an individual’s permission, he isn’t concerned about anything they might release about him.”


Once again, the integrities of some of the world's most accomplished and highly decorated athletes have been brought into disrepute.

But, ever since the 1960's, Olympic athletes from all over the world have been testing positive for illicit or banned substances during competition, some of which leading to them being stripped of their medals as a result. It is quite simply a fact of life within the sporting community.

Whether or not people feel this latest hint of doping ought to bring about repercussions for all those involved is unclear, but one thing is for sure, athletes will not feel like their confidential information is in the safest hands with the World Anti-Doping Agency if they keep falling victim to internet hackers. 

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