Simone Biles responds to being targeted by Russian hackers: I have ADHD

US gymnast was provided with Therapeutic Use Exemption to take prescribed drug on Wada banned list 

Heather Saul
Wednesday 14 September 2016 16:12 BST
The gold medal-winning gymnast says the medication is to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
The gold medal-winning gymnast says the medication is to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (Getty)

Simone Biles has responded to a leak of her confidential medical data after she was one of a number of athletes targeted by a group of Russian hackers.

The hackers, who call themselves Fancy Bears, published records of some American athletes’ Therapeutic Use Exemptions (TUE), which permit athletes to take certain otherwise banned substances if they have a verified medical reason to do so.

Hackers claimed the TUE in records from the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) database were proof of doping by Olympic athletes.

The hack came after more than 100 Russian athletes were banned from competing at the Rio 2016 Olympics following the publication of an independently commissioned Wada report, which found evidence of a Russian state-run doping programme.

In a statement, the US Olympic gold-medalist gymnast said she uses prescription medication to treat her attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). “Having ADHD, and taking medicine for it is nothing to be ashamed of, nothing that I’m afraid to let people know,” she added on Twitter.

USA Gymnastics said Biles submitted and was approved for therapeutic-use exemption.

Steve Penny, president of USA Gymnastics said: “Simone has filed the proper paperwork per USADA and Wada requirements, and there is no violation.”

Venus and Serena Williams were also targeted in the hack.

Wada director general Olivier Niggli said: “Wada condemns these ongoing cyber attacks that are being carried out in an attempt to undermine Wada and the global anti-doping system.

“Wada has been informed by law enforcement authorities that these attacks are originating out of Russia.

“Let it be known that these criminal acts are greatly compromising the effort by the global anti-doping community to re-establish trust in Russia further to the outcomes of the agency's independent McLaren Investigation Report."

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