What is WikiLeaks?

WikiLeaks is a Web site that publishes information that governments, organizations, and individuals may prefer to remain secret. The online whistle-blower - introduced in 2007 - has since been hit with legal action and attempted censorship, along with mainstream media attention.

Mid-year 2010, WikiLeaks made public U.S. military incident reports and confidential records associated with the war in Afghanistan. The leak of classified documents was seen by some as a threat to national security; top secret operations strategy had been blurted out. The unauthorized disclosure also published the names of hundreds of Afghan citizens who were secretly working with the United States military - and who reportedly since have been put on a "death list" by the Taliban.

However, others regarded the inside information reliable and important to citizen understanding, calling the leaked information a direct and unedited picture of the war in Afghanistan. WikiLeaks supporters commend the controversial site for revealing the true story for the first time.

WikiLeaks openly expresses intent to add to the 1 million confidential documents it already hosts online.

Leaking, or what can seem to be sneaking out information, is not just the stuff of international debate. Closer to home, anyone may find times when it's important to sort through rumors, opinions, or second-hand reports to gain more insight into the real deal.