[LINK] Obama/McCain computers compromised in northern hemi summer

Richard Chirgwin rchirgwin at ozemail.com.au
Thu Nov 6 16:02:59 AEDT 2008

Go on, surprise me ... one or the other of these fellows is going to be
the new boss, so the security people give them *both* a good scare...

Moreover, the news leaks in just such a way that any particular item can
later be abandoned, and the stories are told to people who are clearly
technically so ignorant that they just kind of throw together a string
of security scare-words in the hope that some of them are accurate.

I don't doubt that something may have happened, but every other aspect
of the story is so dim, vague, ignorant and third-hand that it sounds
like bait-dangling from people who want to protect their jobs under the
new administration.

Jan Whitaker wrote:
> In:
> http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/11/05/obama-we-cant-solve-globa_n_141358.html
>  From Newsweek's press release:
> New York--The computer systems of both the Obama and McCain campaigns 
> were victims of a sophisticated cyber attack by an unknown "foreign 
> entity," prompting a federal investigation, Newsweek reports in its 
> exclusive special election issue, "President Obama" on newsstands 
> Thursday, Nov. 6.
> At the Obama headquarters in midsummer, technology experts detected 
> what they initially thought was a computer virus, a case of 
> "phishing"--a form of hacking often employed to steal passwords or 
> credit card numbers. But by the next day, both the FBI and the Secret 
> Service came to the campaign with an ominous warning: "You have a 
> problem way bigger than what you understand," an agent told them. 
> "You have been compromised, and a serious amount of files have been 
> loaded off your system." The following day, Obama campaign chief 
> David Plouffe heard from White House chief of staff Josh Bolten, to 
> the same effect: "You have a real problem... and you have to deal 
> with it." The Feds told the Obama campaign in late August that the 
> McCain campaign's computer system had been similarly compromised (a 
> top McCain official confirmed to Newsweek that the campaign's 
> computer system had been hacked and the FBI was had become involved).
> As Editor-at-Large Evan Thomas writes, FBI and White House officials 
> told the Obama campaign that they believed that a foreign entity or 
> organization sought to gather information on the evolution of both 
> camps' policy issues--information that might be useful in 
> negotiations with a future administration. The Feds assured the Obama 
> team that it had not been hacked by its political opponents (Obama 
> technical experts later speculated that the hackers were Russian or 
> Chinese). A security firm retained by the Obama campaign took steps 
> to secure its computer system and end the intrusion. White House and 
> FBI officials had no comment earlier this week.
> Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
> jwhit at janwhitaker.com
> business: http://www.janwhitaker.com
> personal: http://www.janwhitaker.com/personal/
> blog: http://janwhitaker.com/jansblog/
> Our truest response to the irrationality of the world is to paint or 
> sing or write, for only in such response do we find truth.
> ~Madeline L'Engle, writer
> Writing Lesson #54:
> Learn to love revision. Think of it as polishing the silver for 
> guests. - JW, May, 2007
> _ __________________ _

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