China Preparing for Possible High-Profile Hacks?

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NSA Seems to Think So

Cristal M Clark

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Rob Joyce an official at the NSA seems to think that China is getting ready for some possible high-profile hacks, at least that is what he is telling the Wall Street Journal.  

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According to Rob, thus far China has focused it’s hacks on stealing trade secrets and spying which Rob could not be more wrong about by the way.

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The suspicion is that China prepositioning itself to attack “critical infrastructure” such as energy, health care, finance and transportation.  

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What makes this a rather curious situation for the NSA – as far as the US Government is concerned this is simply just speculation, they have no proof of this – at all.

China has always denied conducting any hacking attempts, and the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Geng Shuang said to the NYT that: “China firmly opposes all forms of cyberattack and cracks down on it in accordance with the law.”

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China by the way, as recently reported, the preliminary investigation results into the Marriott/Starwood hacking incident suggests it was in fact part of a Chinese intelligence operation.

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In all honesty the NSA is not so far off the mark in it’s suspicion of China.

However, the NSA is wrong to think China is merely prepositioning itself. China as well as other countries are already in a position to attack our “critical Infrastructure.”

While US leadership was asleep at the wheel other nations have had years to “preposition” themselves for a major cyberattack on the US and they are in fact already in a position for a major cyber attack on the US “critical infrastructure.”

Come now, nobody really believes that all of these hacks and cyber attacks were done just to merely siphon trade secrets and just simply to spy do you?

Cristal M Clark

IOS users can find The Crime Shop on Apple News

@thecrimeshop on twitter

And https://gab.ai/thecrimeshop

 

Global ransomware epidemics – Are Here to Stay

Computer security and hacking concept. Ransomware virus has encrypted data in laptop. Hacker is offering key to unlock encrypted data for money.

WannaCry, Petya, GoldenEye – With More to Follow Any Day Now

Someone mentioned to me today that a news outlet published an article today or yesterday that suggested that the global ransomware epidemic was pretty much here to stay.

I almost spit out my coffee laughing because many security experts, writers and other major news outlets, myself included, have been warning the world about this issue for well over a year now.

News Flash: This is Not Surprising, it’s hardly even new news these days.

Ransomware has been around for years however it was used to only target individual networks, such as a single business, hospital or person.

After the infamous Shadow Brokers hacker group leaked the National Security Agency exploits back in April, cyber-criminals were able to learn about a more dangerous weapon.

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The kind that can strike on a global level.

But is that really all that true? I mean, I love poking fun at the NSA for losing the intel in the first place but…

Anytime you see that someone, anyone is capable of widespread hacking, you should automatically assume they or another someone or group is capable or nearly capable of global hacking, ransomware, the ability to steal data on a global level and gain access to major networks including those that are tasked with running things like banking systems, power grids and governments just to name a few.

It is not like these guys are stupid, we make the mistake of assuming that no one else in the entire world other than the NSA or any government for that matter is capable of and working on developing cyber weapons like WannaCry, Petya or GoldenEye.

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That is so far from the truth it is not even remotely funny. Just because a cyber-criminal hasn’t used a cyber weapon such as this before does not necessarily mean they haven’t developed it or are not working on it.

These guys could have very well been waiting for some type of leak, before moving forward with unleashing the weapon that they created so that they could tweak for instance the NSA’s weapon so that it would be more difficult to trace back to the point of origin.

Usually eventually one can figure out who created what cyber weapon by pouring through the code after all, so in an attempt to disguise that, so if it were me, I would use someone else’s cyber-weapon with that someone else’s code and tweak it just slightly enough to change it without giving away from what country I am in, or what group I am part of and so on.

The point is, without a doubt, cyber-criminals were already moving in this direction believe it or not. Criminals on any level who do not want to become upstanding citizens spend a good majority of their time thinking of new and improved ways around the laws, and that includes new and improved ways of breaking the law, ways that are less detectable by law enforcement.  

Those in the business of committing cyber-crimes are no different than any other type of criminal in that respect.

So no, global epidemics of ransomware being unleashed is not going anywhere soon, new and improved weapons are already being made and developed so as to unleash.

We’ll all have to find better security measures, but a word of caution, much like the flu virus every year, the one we get flu shots for,  we will not truly know how to protect ourselves or whether or not our newest security measures will actually work, until we know what kind of virus we are facing as each new attack is released.

Last but not lease, some of these attacks may also be disguised as mere ransomware, they could actually end up being something much worse that we have yet to learn about.

Cristal M Clark

IOS users can find The Crime Shop on Apple News

@thecrimeshop on twitter

And https://gab.ai/thecrimeshop

 

 

U.S. Department of Justice – Resorting to veiled threats…against the Kremlin?

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Instead of resort to preventative measures

In light of the recent political hacks here in the U.S. today, 9/14/16, the Justice Department dropped a couple of hints that they do in fact, plan to hold Russia accountable for what is suspected to be a broad hacking campaign that has targeted U.S. political organizations and election databases.

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Assistant Attorney General John Carlin said “You’ve seen us use it time and again, the message is clear: You are not safe because you are doing it under another nation’s flag. We can figure out who did it … and when we do, we’re committed to holding people accountable.”

True enough, we have seen it and heard it, over and over again. What we are more interested in seeing are preventative measures. Something along the lines of being proactive rather than reactive.

Both Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Assistant Attorney General John Carlin fell short of actually coming right out and saying they in fact knew that Russia was behind the recent hacks in today’s announcement.

Attorney General Loretta Lynch had this to say: “Whether you are a rogue hacker or a uniformed soldier, the shadowy corners of the internet will not provide respite for long. The light of our efforts is bright, the reach of our resolve is long. There literally is no hiding place.”

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Yet, whomever these hackers are, they have still managed to be hiding, they are unnamed, they have no face for us to look upon, we don’t even really know where they reside, for all we know, the hacks could have all been inside jobs.

Information and access can both be bought and sold for a fairly reasonable price these days…

Assistant Attorney General John Carlin named Russia as one of the 4 main actors that have been involved in supporting hackers targeting the U.S., the other 3 are North Korea, Iran and China.

While it’s true that the U.S. has taken action against hackers with regards to hacks against Sony Pictures, financial institutions and U.S. companies. The action taken so far was against North Korea, Iran and China, nothing for Russia.

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Russia has been suspected of the Democratic Party hacks, as well as for hacks into election systems in both Arizona and Illinois. The word on the street is, they did it in an effort to disrupt the November elections.

Forbes reported that Edward Snowden suspected Russia as being behind the leak over at the NSA last month, something I am personally convinced is part of an inside job, rather than Russia kicking down the air-gapped network doors of the NSA.

Right now Russia is also being accused of hacking the medical records of Olympic Athletes…

President Obama has not acknowledged that he believes Russia is behind the hacks either. At least not publicly.

In Fact, so far most Government officials have hesitated at pointing the blame to Russia and Russia has denied any involvement in the recent hacks.

All save for…

Senator John McCain-R Arizona who today subtly suggested that “Russia is conducting cyber-attacks to undermine American interests at every turn.”

It’s one thing to have irrefutable evidence against someone, it’s an entirely different thing to blame someone for something you cannot prove they did.

It’s unforgivable to place blame on a very public level…When you lack THE EVIDENCE to support that!

What’s that thing we tell all criminals in this country…oh help me out here, isn’t it something along the lines of, being innocent until proven guilty…

Don’t we also allow for defendants to ask for and receive a change of venue if they feel they will not get a fair trial where they were charged because so much media attention was placed on the case that they feel the public, their jury would not give them a fair shot?

Way to practice that public persecution thing here, we are publicly persecuting another country who the U.S. Government hasn’t proven did anything.

I keep seeing headlines suggesting what the U.S. might do should they discover Russia was behind the recent hacks.

What I am not seeing is what the U.S. plans to do if they learn that Russia in fact, had absolutely nothing to do with the recent hacks?

It matters not right now who is behind the hacks as far as the public is concerned, what matters is that our Government is taking steps to prevent future hacks while at the same time investigates what did happen without and this is important, casting blame on another country.

For a country that wants to be a world leader, be seen and known as a world leader, this blame game is not the move a progressive, forward thinking world leading country, would make.

Whether or not someone is hacking for the Russian Government, or it’s a lone hacker if it were me, I’d hold off on blaming anyone outright until I did have irrefutable proof.

While we are all focused on who did it, we are failing to see and realize these hacks clearly illustrate our inability as a nation to prevent cyber attacks.

These hacks illustrate our weakness when it comes to the cyber world.

Because of that, I wouldn’t want to risk rocking the boat without having proof to back up my accusations because until anyone can prove anything…we are still pretty vulnerable to yet another hack and/or cyber attack.  

From a still unknown and unnamed hacker or group of hackers.

Cristal M Clark

IOS users can find The Crime Shop on Apple News

@thecrimeshop