Tag Archives: FBI

Manhunt underway for CIA ‘traitor’ who leaked ‘Vault 7’ to WikiLeaks – report

The FBI and CIA are investigating hundreds of possible suspects in one of the biggest security breaches in CIA history, CBS News reports. The WikiLeaks “Vault 7” release, which contained thousands of top-secret documents, revealed the agency’s hacking tools.

A joint investigation and manhunt by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Central Intelligence Agency into the source of WikiLeaks’ “Vault 7” dump last month has begun, CBS News justice and homeland security correspondent Jeff Pegues reported Wednesday evening.

The release last month brought to light the CIA’s digital arsenal for hacking into computer systems and smart devices such as phones and televisions. Thousands of top-secret classified files that had previously been guarded within a “highly secure section of the intelligence agency,” as CBS News sources described it, were made available to the world for free by WikiLeaks.

The source of the leak, the FBI and CIA reportedly believe, was one of the hundreds of agents or contractors who had physical access to the material, not an outside hacker. That suspicion seems to align with what WikiLeaks said in their press release announcing the Vault 7 release on March 7.

“The archive appears to have been circulated among former US government hackers and contractors in an unauthorized manner, one of whom has provided WikiLeaks with portions of the archive,” the pro-transparency group said.

Unnamed US intelligence sources told Reuters within a day of the release that the CIA had been anticipating it since near the end of 2016.

The FBI and CIA coordinated reviews of the incident and a criminal investigation was opened within a day of the release, the Washington Post reported at the time, based on an unnamed former intelligence official who said to expect “another major mole hunt.”

Former CIA Deputy Director Mike Morell told CBS News less than a week after the release that the leak “has to be an inside job,” as the data was on a CIA top secret network “not connected to any other network.”

Former NSA contractor and whistleblower Ed Snowden tweeted hours after the release that “only a cleared insider” could be responsible for the leak.

Last week, in his first public comments in his new position, CIA director Mike Pompeo blasted WikiLeaks as “a non-state hostile intelligence service often abetted by state actors like Russia” and called founder Julian Assange a “demon.”

Assange on Wednesday hit back at Pompeo on ‘The Intercepted’ podcast with Jeremy Scahill of The Intercept, accusing him of attacking WikiLeaks “to get ahead of the publicity curve.”

“In fact, the reason Pompeo is launching this attack is because he understands we are exposing in this series all sorts of illegal actions by the CIA, so he’s trying to get ahead of the publicity curve and create a preemptive defense,” Assange said.

From RT

Posted by The NON-Conformist

FBI investigating arson, ‘Vote Trump’ tag at black church

The FBI opened a civil rights investigation into the arson and vandalism of an African-American church in Mississippi, where someone spray-painted “Vote Trump” in what the mayor called a “heinous, hateful, cowardly act.”

Image: AP

The pulpit and pews were burned, and soot stained the brick around some windows. Greenville Fire Chief Ruben Brown Sr. said the fire was set by someone and estimated the Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church was 80 percent destroyed.

“We consider it a hate crime,” Mayor Errick Simmons said. “Because of the political message which we believe was intended to interfere with worship and intimidate voters.”

More from WRAL.com

Posted by Libergirl

FBI in new push to probe web browser history – report

The FBI hopes to amend surveillance laws as early as this year, giving the agency explicit authority to access a personal Internet browser history by simply issuing an administrative “national security letter,” the Washington Post reports.
The new legislation being readied would empower the FBI to obtain “electronic communication transactional records” bypassing judges’ approval with the help of a “national security letter” (NSL) which could be issued by the special agent in charge of a bureau field office, the paper says.

The FBI chief made a specific point that gaining this access through changing legislation is topping agency’s priorities for the year 2016, since the inability to get the necessary data “affects our work in a very, very big and practical way,” James Comey told the Senate Intelligence Committee in February.

The Obama administration already tried to adopt a similar amendment some six years ago, but had to retreat after fierce opposition from the IT industry and privacy advocates.

Incidentally, Comey believes the current state of things is thanks to a “scrivener’s error” in the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, enabling internet providers and other technical companies to refuse providing certain personal information to the agency, citing infringement of American citizens’ privacy.

The ECPA is “needlessly hamstringing our counterintelligence and counterterrorism efforts,” Comey stressed.

The FBI also insists that a broader update of the ECPA should set electronic communication transactional records equal to telephone billing records.

The personal web ‘transactional records’ in question will allegedly include protocol addresses and the exact time a person spends on a web resource, but not content like search queries and email texts.

A coalition of privacy and civil society groups united with internet industry organizations to oppose the legal initiative, warning that the amendment would “dramatically expand the ability of the FBI to get sensitive information about users’ online activities without oversight.”

Security letters requesting data usually come with a gag order forbidding the internet providers from making the fact of the FBI request public.

The FBI has issued over 300,000 such requests within the past 10 years and in most cases they were accompanied by gag orders, estimated American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) legislative counsel Neema Singh Guliani.

“That’s the perfect storm of more information gathered, less transparency and no accountability,” Guliani said.

From RT

Posted by The NON-Conformist

 

Here’s what exactly the FBI wanted from Apple

Apple Inc. Chief Executive Tim Cook said in a sharp online letterthat the company will oppose a federal judge’s order to help unlock a San Bernardino, Calif. attacker’s phone.

Image: Apple

“Apple complies with valid subpoenas and search warrants, as we have in the San Bernardino case,” Cook wrote. “We have also made Apple engineers available to advise the FBI, and we’ve offered our best ideas on a number of investigative options at their disposal.”

So what more did the FBI ask for that Cook is outright refusing? Here’s a breakdown of what exactly the feds wanted from Apple and why Cook said no:

More from MarketWatch

Posted by The NON-Conformist

Sheriff to Oregon protest holdouts: ‘There doesn’t have to be bloodshed’

Federal and state authorities said Wednesday the shooting death of one protester and arrest of 8 others who had occupied a federal wildlife refuge came after futile efforts to end the standoff peacefully for 25 days.

“Instead, they have chosen to threaten and intimidate the America they profess to love and through their criminal actions bring these consequences upon themselves,” said Greg Bretzing, FBI special agent in charge.

In a particularly emotional statement before reporters, Harney County Sheriff Dave Ward spoke directly to the remaining half-dozen holdouts at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge near Burns, Ore., which has been occupied since Jan. 2.

More from USA Today

Posted by Libergirl

Report: DOJ, FBI Admit Years of Flawed Testimony From Forensic Unit

The Justice Department and FBI have formally acknowledged that nearly every examiner in the FBI Laboratory’s microscopic hair comparison unit gave flawed testimony in almost all trials in which they offered evidence against criminal defendants over more than a two-decade period before 2000, The Washington Post reported.

Image: Getty

Twenty-six of the 28 examiners overstated forensic matches in ways that favored prosecutors in more than 95 percent of the 268 trials reviewed so far, the Post reported Saturday, citing information from the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Innocence Project.

 The organizations are assisting the government with the post-conviction review of questioned forensic evidence and provided the statistics under an agreement with the government to release results after the review of the first 200 convictions, the Post reported.
Posted by Libergirl

FBI pushing for new domestic and global internet hacking powers

Image: Getty

In a move that watchdog groups are calling an unconstitutional power grab, the Federal Bureau of Investigation is reportedly looking to rewrite the espionage rulebook, giving it the authority to hack into computers at home and abroad.

With little public debate and congressional oversight on the issue, the FBI appears set to make the fourth amendment to the Constitution wholly redundant, which protects Americans against “illegal searches and seizures,” The Guardian reported.

The Department of Justice will present its case on November 5 to the Advisory Committee on Criminal Rules.

“This is a giant step forward for the FBI’s operational capabilities, without any consideration of the policy implications. To be seeking these powers at a time of heightened international concern about US surveillance is an especially brazen and potentially dangerous move,” Ahmed Ghappour, an expert in computer law at the University of California, who will participate in next week’s meeting, told the Guardian.

More from Russia Today

Posted by The NON-Conformist