” It was the spring of 2011 when the European Commission discovered it had been hacked. The intrusion into the EU’s legislative body was sophisticated and widespread and used a zero-day exploit to get in. Once the attackers established a stronghold on the network, they were in for the long haul. They scouted the network architecture for additional victims and covered their tracks well. Eventually, they infected numerous systems belonging to the European Commission and the European Council before being discovered.
Two years later another big target was hacked. This time it was Belgacom, the partly state-owned Belgian telecom. In this case, too, the attack was sophisticated and complex. According to published news reports and documents leaked by Edward Snowden, the attackers targeted system administrators working for Belgacom and used their credentials to gain access to routers controlling the telecom’s cellular network. Belgacom publicly acknowledged the hack, but has never provided details about the breach.
Then five months after that announcement, news of another high-profile breach emerged—this one another sophisticated hack targeting prominent Belgian cryptographer Jean-Jacques Quisquater. “
” Now it appears that security researchers have found the massive digital spy tool used in all three attacks. Dubbed “Regin” by Microsoft, more than a hundred victims have been found to date, but there are likely many others still unknown. That’s because the espionage tool—a malicious platform capable of taking over entire networks and infrastructures—has been around since at least 2008, possibly even earlier, and is built to remain stealth on a system for years.
The threat has been known since at least 2011, around the time the EU was hacked and some of the attack files made their way to Microsoft, who added detection for the component to its security software. Researchers with Kaspersky Lab only began tracking the threat in 2012, collecting bits and pieces of the massive threat. Symantec began investigating it in 2013 after some of its customers were infected. Putting together information from each, it’s clear the platform is highly complex and modulated and can be customized with a wide range of capabilities depending on the target and the attackers’ needs. Researchers have found 50 payloads so far for stealing files and other data, but have evidence that still more exist.
“ It’s a threat that everyone has detected for some time, but no one has exposed [until now],” says Eric Chien, technical director of Symantec’s Security Technology and Response division.
The researchers have no doubt that Regin is a nation-state tool and are calling it the most sophisticated espionage machine uncovered to date—more complex even than the massive Flame platform, uncovered by Kaspersky and Symantec in 2012 and crafted by the same team who created Stuxnet. “
The whole story may be read at Wired
Click pic for video
” 10-year-old Tiffany Miranda of Santa Fe Springs, CA suffers from a severe seizure disorder that prevents her from playing on playground equipment in public parks. To ease her quality of life, the Make-A-Wish Foundation built her a playground play set, which her parents placed in the back yard of their own property. However, according to CBS Los Angeles, the Santa Fe Springs city government has issued a citation ordering the family to remove the play set from their back yard, claiming that it is an eyesore.
Jessica Torres, Tiffany’s mother, told CBS Los Angeles, “When I asked the city, ‘So where do you expect my daughter to play?’ they said ‘Well, the city’s not responsible for your daughter’s disability…’ They said ‘Your Tiffany is not our problem.’” Stating her intention to fight back against the citation, Torres said, “I’m not going to let this go. I’m not going to remove the playhouse and I’m not going to remove her canopy and I want them to stop picking on my Tiffany.” Torres said that her daughter loves playing on her playground play set, “She’s able to be a normal kid. She has her own special park.” “
Ben Swann has more on the ever-caring State
For those who might be interested in the growing student protests and increasing crackdown of same by the Chinese authorities we provide the reader with a pair of live feeds from Hong Kong .
The above feed is from Ustream subscriber 本台設有下載區及網誌 Mee JTV
The second feed is from 佔領中環直播 Occupy Central,Hong Kong Live
Bear in mind that these feeds sometimes cease broadcasting for a time but usually go live again fairly quickly so keep checking back for the latest developments .
” The “narrative” of Ferguson, Missouri changed somewhat today. But, amid the confusion, the blundering stupidity of the city’s police department remains consistent.
This morning the Police Chief, Thomas Jackson, released security-camera shots of the late Michael Brown apparently stealing a five-dollar box of cigarillos from a convenience store. So the 18-year old shot dead by Chief Jackson’s officer was no longer a “gentle giant” en route to college but just another crappy third-rate violent teen n’er-do-well.
This afternoon, the chief gave a second press conference. Why would he do that? Well, he’d somehow managed to create the impression in his first press conference that the officer who killed Mr Brown was responding to the robbery. In fact, that was not the case. The Ferguson policeman was unaware that Brown was a robbery suspect at the time he encountered him and shot him dead. Which is presumably why Chief Jackson was leaned on to give his second press conference and tidy up the mess from the first. So we have an officer who sees two young men, unwanted for any crime, walking down the middle of the street and stops his cruiser. Three minutes later one of them is dead.
On the other hand, Jackson further confused matters by suggesting that he noticed Brown had cigars in his hand and might be the suspect.
It’s important, when something goes wrong, to be clear about what it is that’s at issue. Talking up Michael Brown as this season’s Trayvonesque angel of peace and scholarship was foolish, and looting stores in his saintly memory even worse. But this week’s pictures from Ferguson, such as the one above, ought to be profoundly disquieting to those Americans of a non-looting bent. “
Mr Steyn addresses the mess that is Ferguson , Missouri . Read it all .
” The Pentagon along with the Minerva Research Initiative, appears to have resuscitated and partially reconstituted a 60′s Cold War-era social science program used to detect political protest…
The controversial program called Project Camelot had been operational nearly a decade into the Vietnam war, as the Special Operations Research Office (SORO) located at American University had received millions in funding from the US Army to conduct a six country study on civil unrest. The current social science program directed by Minerva and the Department of Defense (DoD), appears to have also partnered with some of the most well-known universities in the United States by studying the behavior of peaceful activism and how political ideology shapes protest movements in the world at large.
The Minerva Research Initiative has been conducting its studies with the sponsorship of the Department of Defense and its university partners since 2010. This new program has prompted a rebirth of the militarization of social science and in the process has undoubtedly opened a floodgate of ethical concerns. The creation of this partnership was born out of a speech by former Secretary of Defense as well as past Director of the CIA, Robert Gates. In April of 2008, Gates delivered a speech at the Association of American Universities, there he provided a vague outline for research that worked in conjunction with academia and other Pentagon affiliated agencies such as the DoD :
“What we are considering is based to some degree on the success we had in the Cold War. During that period, we built up the Department of Defense’s – and the nation’s – intellectual capital with new research centers such as RAND and new mechanisms like, as I mentioned, the National Defense Education Act. With the Minerva initiative, we envision a consortia of universities that will promote research in specific areas. These consortia could also be repositories of open-source documentary archives. The Department of Defense, perhaps in conjunction with other government agencies, could provide the funding for these projects.”
Read more at 21st Century Wire
” A Brazilian police officer was filmed firing what appear to be live rounds at anti-World Cup protesters this weekend.”
” The incident was captured by the Associated Press close to Rio de Janeiro’s Maracana stadium during the Argentina vs Bosnia-Herzegovina match on Sunday.
The scenes also saw a man in plain clothes who identified himself as a police officer fire two shots into the air. He continued firing as he was driven away. The news agency was not able to confirm his identity.
Some residents have turned to artistic protest – daubing walls with anti-Fifa graffiti.
These powerful images show a nation discontent with corruption, greed and injustice. “
” One mural in particular, at a Sao Paulo school by renowned street artist Paulo Ito, has gone viral on social media, showing a weeping, starving Brazilian boy, knife and fork in hand, being served a football on a plate.”
Lots more here and at the link below:
RIO OFFICER SHOOTS LIVE ROUND DURING CUP PROTEST
” The federal response will definitely come. It will likely be in three areas; two of which don’t involve the Bundys specifically. First, a multi-faceted attack will be made on the Bundys; second, a broad-front regulatory response against other land users will be made for the purpose of retaliation against the whole group and as a deterrent; and third, new provocateur deployments will probably be made across the West into similar situations.
The attack on the Bundys will be planned to be large enough so as to not fail since precedents are being considered by the feds. To give an historical example, the precedent of voluntary militias forming in the nineties as a constitutional concept in lieu of standing armies was effectively derailed for twenty years when the whole movement was painted as obscene by multiple federal law enforcement agencies intensely targeting them, or anything that looked like them, while prosecuting a P.R. campaign in conjunction with the sycophant mass media in the wake of the provocateured Oklahoma City fiasco.
There is the possibility that doors will be smashed down in the darkness of early morning raids for all the Bundy family members, supporters, and ranch hands. There is the possibility that plants are feigning inside knowledge at this very moment and are seated with prosecutors scrolling through video and pointing out participants and ascribing statements or actions to them. Such violent raids on houses and places of business targeting these designated domestic terrorists represent one possibility. If that happens, it probably won’t be immediate. The following factors all affect the time-line for the response which I estimate to be in about three weeks, give or take a week or two.”
Our guess is bloodshed , as the Feds are sure to feel the need to make an example so as to: “Pour encourager les autres”
Read the whole thing and decide for yourself .
” New York gun owners who possess firearms classified as assault weapons under a new state law have until the end of Tuesday to register their guns — or face potential criminal charges.
The requirement is part of a provision of New York’s so-called SAFE Act, the package of tighter gun restrictions signed into law in Albany months after the Sandy Hook school massacre. The law broadened the state’s “assault weapons” ban to cover more kinds of semiautomatic weapons.
Gun owners who lawfully possessed guns that are now on the banned list were allowed to keep their weapons, but had to register them with the state police. They were also given the option of selling their guns to a licensed New York dealer or out-of-state buyer by Jan. 15 of this year.
Those who fail to comply could face a misdemeanor charge or — if they were already disqualified from owning a gun because of a prior criminal conviction or other reason — a potential felony.
Some gun owners say they have no intention of obeying the edict, reports the Daily Gazette of Schenectady:
Fulton County Sheriff Thomas Lorey said he has attended pro-gun rallies in the Capital Region over the past year at which thousands of people from across the state said they do not plan to register their assault weapons.
“ So many people have said they won’t register their guns. I haven’t been told personally, but I’m sure there are some people who have not registered in Fulton County and some who have,” Lorey said. “But I think everyone who plans to register their weapons has already done so.”
Do not expect huge lines at your local State trooper barracks , as Sheriff Lorey says , whoever is going to register has most likely already done so , and we’ll wage it’s damn few .
WSJ has more