Posts Tagged ‘Julian Assange’

Hacker group Anonymous says it will release Bank of America emails

March 13, 2011 Comments off

The loose-knit hacker collective known as “Anonymous” plans to release emails obtained from Bank of America Corp. early today, an Anonymous-related Twitter feed said.

“[S]ee you guy’s Monday Morning 5am…London Time,” a post from the Twitter username OperationLeakS said.

“Meet my demands Release Pfc. Bradley Manning and I will remove every #BoA Employee from the Emails,” the feed said Saturday, referring to the US Army private accused of leaking sensitive US cables to WikiLeaks.

Manning is currently being held at the Quantico Marine base, outside Washington, D.C.

Anonymous is not officially affiliated with WikiLeaks, but members have previously targeted websites including PayPal, Amazon, Visa and the head office of the Swedish Prosecution Authority for hampering WikiLeaks’ activities.

WikiLeaks said in December 2010 that it would soon release information about banks and advised “that all people who love freedom close out their accounts at Bank of America,” prompting speculation that the bank would be the next target of a major WikiLeaks document dump.

Twitter must give user info in WikiLeaks probe

March 12, 2011 Comments off

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A federal magistrate ruled Friday that prosecutors can demand Twitter account information of certain users in their criminal probe into the disclosure of classified documents on WikiLeaks.

The prosecutors’ reasons for seeking the records remain secret and it’s unknown how important they are to the investigation of the largest leak ever of classified American documents.

The Twitter users argued that the government was on a fishing expedition that amounted to an unconstitutional violation of their freedoms of speech and association.

But in a ruling issued Friday, U.S. Magistrate Judge Theresa Carroll Buchanan said the government’s request was reasonable and did nothing to hamper the Twitter users’ free speech Read more…

Paul Craig Roberts: CIA May Assassinate Julian Assange

March 1, 2011 Comments off

Late last week the City of Westminster Magistrates’ Court ordered the extradition of Julian Assange from England to Sweden under a European Arrest Warrant. Assange will likely be extradited to Sweden and questioned about a trumped-up rape allegation, two allegations of sexual molestation, and an allegation of unlawful coercion by two Swedish women who have been variously described as hoenytraps.

The Wikileaks founder is afraid that he will be extradited from Sweden to the United States where his lawyers argue he could be sent to the Guantanamo Bay detention facility or face the Read more…

Giving personal information to websites such as Twitter, Facebook and Gmail is about as secure as putting it on “a postcard”

January 18, 2011 Comments off

An Icelandic politician whose Internet records are being targeted by Washingtons WikiLeaks investigation warns that giving personal information to websites such as Twitter, Facebook and Gmail is about as secure as putting it on a postcard.”

They are on a fishing expedition,” Birgitta Jonsdottir told The Globe and Mail editorial board, making some of her first public comments since learning that U.S. prosecutors are after her Twitter account. Her private messages, credit-card and telephone numbers are all being sought from the social-networking site – and, almost certainly, from other U.S.-based Internet corporations, too.

The request speaks to how state secrets will be won, lost and protected during the Internet Age, where libraries worth of data can be uploaded onto thumb drives, and where unfathomable amounts of person-to-person correspondence reside on corporate computers inside the United States.

A freedom-of-information advocate, Ms. Jonsdottir, 43, became a crucial WikiLeaks volunteer in 2009, but left last fall amid fallings-out with the leadership of founder Julian Assange. U.S. President Barack Obama’s administration is now under tremendous pressure to charge Mr. Assange amid the deep embarrassment caused by the ongoing disclosure of more than 250,000 diplomatic cables. Read more…

WikiLeaks to speed release of leaked docs

January 11, 2011 Comments off

In the event of his untimely death or long-term incarceration, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange would make public all the leaked documents his group has.

LONDON – WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange vowed Tuesday to step up his site’s release of secret documents while he fights extradition to Sweden, as his lawyers argued that sending him to Stockholm could land him in Guantanamo Bay or even on U.S. death row.

That claim, regarded by many legal experts as extremely unlikely, is part of a preliminary defense argument released by Assange’s attorneys ahead of a court hearing next month.

The Australian computer expert is wanted in Sweden to answer sex-crimes allegations. American officials also are trying to build a criminal case against WikiLeaks, which has published a trove of leaked diplomatic cables and secret U.S. military files on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Assange’s lawyers are seeking to link the two issues, claiming the Swedish prosecution is politically motivated — an allegation that Sweden strongly denies.

Assange’s defense claims “there is a real risk that, if extradited to Sweden, the U.S. will seek his extradition and/or illegal rendition to the USA, where there will be a real risk of him being detained at Guantanamo Bay or elsewhere.”

The document, prepared by Assange’s lead lawyer, Geoffrey Robertson, adds that “there is a real risk that he could be made subject to the death penalty” if sent to the United States.

Under European law, suspects cannot be extradited to jurisdictions where they may face the death penalty.

It also is not clear what, if any, charges U.S. authorities could bring against Assange, and unclear how he could be classed as an “unlawful enemy combatant,” which could expose him to detention at Guantanamo Bay.

“Mr. Assange would not be sent to Guantanamo,” said John Bellinger, a former legal adviser to the U.S. State Department. “He would be prosecuted in U.S. federal court. He would not be treated as an enemy combatant. Read more…

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NASA Sold Computer Hard Drives Containing Sensitive Government Info

January 10, 2011 Comments off

Julian Assange may have needed a mole inside the Army to get sensitive government documents for WikiLeaks, but thanks to the lax IT procedures at NASA, it looks like he may have only needed an eBay account.

Due to weak security measures and an agency culture that struggles with properly handling property transfer, NASA sold hard drives to the general public that contained information that could help hackers penetrate the space agency’s computers, according to a new report from the NASA’s Office of Inspector General (OIG).

The computers were left over from the shuttle program, which NASA sold off publicly after they had been properly sanitized of any sensitive information. However, it seems that a combination of poorly designed procedures and individual failures led NASA personnel to skip that sanitation step. Overall, 10 entires PCs that might have contained IP information and other sensitive data are known to have ended up sold to private citizens.

“During our audit, we discovered significant weaknesses in the sanitization and disposal processes for IT equipment at four NASA Centers – Kennedy and Johnson Space Centers and Ames and Langley Research Centers,” the report reads.

This is not the first time that NASA has come under fire for poor information technology and equipment management. According to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), NASA misplaced $94 million in equipment between 1997 and 2007, and failed to meet their goals of stopping such losses in six of those ten years.

A 2007 GAO report portrayed a NASA culture where property mismanagement and loss rarely results in punishment. In one instance, a NASA employee escaped punishment despite providing an explanation for losing a laptop consisting of the excuse “this computer, although assigned to me, was being used on board the International Space Station. I was informed that it was tossed overboard to be burned up in the atmosphere when it failed,” the 2007 GAO report said.