HBGary, Wikileaks, and Anonymous

I don’t normally post links to stuff unless I think I have something useful to say on my own. I am still mulling these events over, but I wanted to set a marker, to refer to later on.

It all started when Visa, and Amazon, et al. cut off services to Wikileaks, claiming criminal activity (which, of course, they haven’t even been charged with, let alone convicted of). 4chan’s infamous Anonymous struck back

Then the FBI reportedly hired HBGary to help find Anonymous, which irritated them. I mean really irritated them.

And this is how they did it, and HERE is the scary part — HBGary’s government links and the pervasiveness of their methodology….by an interesting author

How will this roll out? I’m not sure. The government seems to be willing to sacrifice American citizen’s personal freedoms in order to pursue their agenda, and it doesn’t seem to matter which party is in power. Even if we were to assume that HBGary’s presentations to government were aspirational (as DHS is wont to say about many terrorist plots) and were not adopted by any agency, the fact that they felt such presentations might fly is troubling — and smacks of the abuses we saw back in the sixties. In addition, we see many non-government actors mentioned in these discussions. Actors who operate under no constitutional restraints.

Update (19 Feb): That “aspirational” thing? Maybe a better term is “response to a sources sought request

Update (7 Mar): Here is another analysis, by a security website, about HBGary’s mistakes.

Update (17 Mar): Yeah, it’s not ‘aspirational’. DoD really does want to develop these capabilities. To the tune of $2.6 million.

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