The phone hacking scandal is a controversy over illegal acquisition of confidential information by news media organizations that reportedly occurred in the United Kingdom, the United States and Australia between 1995 and 2011. This article includes reference lists for various topics relating to that scandal. These lists are organized according to the topics shown below in blue type. By 2002, the practice of publications using private investigators to acquire confidential information was widespread, with some individuals using illegal methods. Victims of these illegal methods included celebrities, politicians, law enforcement officials, solicitors, and ordinary citizens. As this illegal activity became apparent, arrests were made and some convictions achieved. Upon learning their privacy had been violated, some victims retained solicitors and filed suit against news media companies and their agents, in some cases receiving financial payments for violation of privacy. Successful suits and publicity from investigative news articles led to further disclosures, including the names of more victims, more documentary evidence of wrongdoing, admissions of wrongdoing, and potentially related payments. Allegations were made of poor judgement and cover up by news media executives and law enforcement officials. As a result, new investigations were initiated and several senior executives and police officials resigned. There were also significant commercial consequences of the scandal.