Spyware On Hard Drives by NSA?: Reuters and Wired on CyberWar
Reuters: Russian researchers expose breakthrough
U.S. spying program
Read the whole Reuters article by Joseph Menn, here:
(Reuters) – The U.S. National Security Agency has figured out how to hide spying software deep within hard drives made by Western Digital, Seagate, Toshiba and other top manufacturers, giving the agency the means to eavesdrop on the majority of the world’s computers, according to cyber researchers and former operatives.
That long-sought and closely guarded ability was part of a cluster of spying programs discovered by Kaspersky Lab, the Moscow-based security software maker that has exposed a series of Western cyberespionage operations.
Kaspersky said it found personal computers in 30 countries infected with one or more of the spying programs, with the most infections seen in Iran, followed by Russia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, China, Mali, Syria, Yemen and Algeria. The targets included government and military institutions, telecommunication companies, banks, energy companies, nuclear researchers, media, and Islamic activists, Kaspersky said. (reut.rs/1L5knm0)
The firm declined to publicly name the country behind the spying campaign, but said it was closely linked to Stuxnet, the NSA-led cyberweapon that was used to attack Iran’s uranium enrichment facility. The NSA is the agency responsible for gathering electronic intelligence on behalf of the United States.
A former NSA employee told Reuters that Kaspersky’s analysis was correct, and that people still in the intelligence agency valued these spying programs as highly as Stuxnet. Another former intelligence operative confirmed that the NSA had developed the prized technique of concealing spyware in hard drives, but said he did not know which spy efforts relied on it.
NSA spokeswoman Vanee Vines declined to comment.”
(end excerpt — please hit that link above and read the entire article — it’s worth your time.)
A very intelligent article about the spy-ware insertions/implants into hard drives is over at Wired. See that one here:
Wired headline is well-done, evoking one’s interest quickly without departing from its foundation in truthful journalistic reportage. Here is Wired’s headline:
Suite of Sophisticated Nation-State Attack Tools Found With
Connection to Stuxnet
Wired’s claim is sourced to the fact that Kaspersky Labs mentioned that to Reuters. I recommend reading their article.
But let’s get real really quickly here. Let’s face it. Many of us here already know about CIA “proprietaries”, and by extension we have every reason on earth to suppose that the NSA may use proprietaries as well. That being the case, we’re left with the virgin question of whether any Internet Tech company which provides security for computer users anywhere may be an Intelligence community proprietary. That scenario would run something like this –
Hypothetically speaking of course we will say that the Internet is buzzing with screams crying out for security. Everyone is calling for PGP-type encryption on their emails and other Internet activity. Those who shop online or bank online are crying for extensive security.
An Intelligence agency notices that more and more Americans are going to private sector companies which work online and sell “secure” email services. They promise that no one can break their encryption codes and that you and the intended recipient of your email are the only ones who’ll know what you say. They will charge a fee, but it’s reasonable enough to go ahead and pay them for the service. The Intelligence agency notes all this and, like a 20th Century Bernays, gets a bright idea – “Let’s take a carload of Black Budget money and start a cyber-security email company as a proprietary. We can charge the public for encrypting their emails using our own encryption technology so we can read everything anyway, but other hackers won’t be able to. It will be a legitimate business, with employees who know nothing about what we’re doing behind the scenes, a great HUMINT proprietary exercise which will profit the Company.”
That is one scenario in paranoid playfulness. But is it really paranoid?
A proprietary is a “front” business started clandestinely and operated by an Intelligence agency. Classic examples are Castle Bank and Trust of Nassau, Air America, Civil Air Transport, Nugan-Hand Bank, and BCCI. Those businesses were started by the CIA or taken over by CIA after “friendly” start-ups. Anyone can learn about how it’s done by reading a former high-ranking CIA officer’s confessions in the book entitled “The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence” by Victor Marchetti and John D. Marks.
There are countless others. The sporting goods store down the street, the plumbing company which makes house calls, the ice cream distributor, an Internet search engine, even facebook — anything and everything that is done in the private sector, including banks and power companies, can be a front, a “proprietary”.
Accounts are also found in Alfred McCoy’s bombshell book, “The Politics of Heroin: CIA Complicity In The Global Drug Trade”.
I would invite readers to peruse a section of that book which I typed into an Internet forum twelve years ago. That will give readers a good idea of how it’s done in the business of Intelligence.
Same scenario could work with search engines, yes? Could Google be a CIA or NSA proprietary? We’ll likely never know, unless we the people get our hands on one of those new-fangled quantum computers and dedicate it to the liberty movement, and reinforce it with other tangential systems related to Humint and Sigint and all the other tricks of the trade let loose in our world by the National Security Act of 1947. But we would be foolish to trust either the CIA or the NSA, that’s for sure.
[ot-video type=”youtube” url=”https://youtu.be/cGhcECnWRGM”]
There has long been a secret passion for spying, and nowhere is it more protected than inside compartmentalized areas of our Intelligence community, where it hides and acts in shadowy sins with the blessings of sitting U.S. Presidents – all of them since President Truman. For example, Truman’s successor, Dwight D. Eisenhower himself authorized the invasion of Cuba by CIA clandestine forces, and Kennedy extended that Finding to carry forward the project which ended in disgrace and shame as the world first heard President Kennedy lie about the Bay of Pigs and then discovered the painful truth, that Kennedy had not only known about it but had authorized it as a continuation of Eisenhower’s foreign policy regarding Cuba. Don’t believe me? Some of Princeton University’s archived notations on Allen Dulles, whom Kennedy fired from being head of CIA after the Bay of Pigs scandal, are reproduced by Peter Grose, who also authored the history of the CFR.
I must add one more extension here, and then I’ll quote Stewart Rhodes, founder of Oath Keepers, to make my point. This extension has to do with Zbigniew Brzezinski in his 1970 masterpiece of globalist elite arrogance, entitled “Between Two Ages: America’s Role In The Technetronic Era”.
In that book Brzezinski makes the following statement. (Remember, he published this in 1970)
“The technetronic era involves the gradual appearance of a more controlled society. Such a society would be dominated by an elite, unrestrained by traditional values. Soon it will be possible to assert almost continuous surveillance over every citizen and maintain up-to-date complete files containing even the most personal information about the citizen. These files will be subject to instantaneous retrieval by the authorities…Today we are again witnessing the emergence of transnational elites…[whose] ties cut across national boundaries… It is likely that before long the social elites of most of the more advanced countries will be highly internationalist or globalist in spirit and outlook….”
So to my point. The power elite have long known of the possibilities presented by the invention of the computer and the subsequent Internet and world wide web. They have wittingly determined to use such possibilities to the advantage of the global power elite while characterizing the proletariat in general as a servant class with a low “need-to-know” factor, yet one which could be managed to produce the GDP of all developed nations for the benefit of the elite.
The power elite use governments to achieve their ends. Governments use the force of “authority” to modify public behavior patterns and “keep the barbarians from coming together”. (Brzezinski) That authority would extend into the usage of Internet Technology and computer technology to surveil and control the masses. That very premise, predicted in 1970 by Brzezinski before he and David Rockefeller created the Tri-lateral Commission, has now morphed into a militarized police state which promises to become a martial-law police state as government seeks to forge favorable consensus in the public mind toward its preferred policy.
Meanwhile, we have long ago passed through the portal of intermission, and the final act is due any moment as we learn that the government can enter our computers at will any time it wants to, that it can and will use ELF Waves on us, that it is storing all of our communications for future data-mining, etc etc etc. And the Government shalll intrude any time it sees some imagined need to. Stewart Rhodes puts it this way: (quoting)
“[The] Big picture point is that there really is no such thing as online security or even computer security.” – Stewart Rhodes
Indeed, as Orwellian as it may sound, in the name of “security” our protector state has stipped us of all individual privacy, wreaked havoc around the globe to create perpetual enemies so we can fight perpetual wars for perpetual “peace”, and under such rule of “security” we now have less security than ever before in America’s history. And for it all, the world hates us for funding the most intrusive and aggressive nation-state in history, which makes us more and more insecure by anyone’s way of looking at things.
Elias Alias, editor