Are Russian Hackers Under Your Bed?

It's time to face facts. There are Russians under your bed, under my bed, under everyone's bed, and they want to steal your vote!
They are under the beds of Germany.

Germany's intelligence agency accused Russia of deploying cyberattacks against the country, including the spread of propaganda and attempts to destabilize the government. And why not?

Yes, why not!
Those dastardly Russian hackers are violating innocent German maidens!
They are, uh, nevermind.

Germany’s intelligence agencies have found no evidence that Russia is meddling in the country’s politics following a government-commissioned investigation.

Germany dodged a bullet, but France wasn't so lucky.

Hackers with connections to the Russian government played a role in an effort to damage centrist French politician Emmanuel Macron's presidential campaign by hacking and leaking emails and documents ahead of the election, according to two U.S. intelligence officials.

Both the WashPo and NY Times confirm that brave French voters defeated those dastardly Russian hackers and saved the virtues of innocent French maidens.
They, uh, nevermind.

The head of the French government’s cyber security agency, which investigated leaks from President Emmanuel Macron’s election campaign, says they found no trace of a notorious Russian hacking group behind the attack.

russians-are-under-my-bed.jpg
Recently there was a report leaked about how Russia "hacked" our election.
But did anyone else bother to read it?

Russian General Staff Main Intelligence Directorate actors … executed cyber espionage operations against a named U.S. company in August 2016, evidently to obtain information on elections-related software and hardware solutions. … The actors likely used data obtained from that operation to … launch a voter registration-themed spear-phishing campaign targeting U.S. local government organizations.

Hmmm. Spear-phishing.
Why does that sound familiar? Oh yeah.

The attacker or attackers registered a deliberately misspelled domain name used for email phishing attacks against DNC employees, connected to an IP address associated with APT 28/Fancy Bear.
The DCLeaks.com domain was registered by a person using the same email service as the person who registered a misspelled domain used to send phishing emails to DNC employees.

So let me see if I've got this right: We are in a panic about spear-phishing "attacks"?
Spear-phishing? The same stuff that fill up my email inbox at work? The same stuff that bored teenagers create for fun in their parent's basements? This is the best that the entire resources of the Russian state can manage, and we are supposed to be scared?

There's another thing to remember - the only source of the report of the DNC hack was a private company, Crowdsource.

As far as we know, the FBI still has not examined the DNC server that Russia allegedly hacked.
There has been no corroboration or second opinion on who may have hacked the server. The only source for this claim is CrowdStrike, who began monitoring the DNC system on May 5th, 2016, according to DailyMail.com.
The DNC also reportedly paid $168,000 to CrowdStrike.

You might think that with so much dependent on this private organization, that there would be more attention paid to their record, background, and connections to the Democratic Party.

In April 2016, two months before the June report that alleged a Russian conspiracy, former President Barack Obama appointed Steven Chabinsky, the general counsel and chief risk officer for CrowdStrike, to the Commission on Enhancing National Cybersecurity.

The Co-Founder of CrowdStrike Dmitri Alperovitch is a senior fellow on the anti-Russian Atlantic Council.
Crowdstrike also accused Russia of hacking Ukrainian artillery.

U.S. cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike has revised and retracted statements it used to buttress claims of Russian hacking during last year's American presidential election campaign. The shift followed a VOA report that the company misrepresented data published by an influential British think tank.

There is a winner from all this. Crowdstrike has raised a quarter of a billion dollars so far this year, and is now worth $1 Billion.
I'm sure it's just a coincidence.

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54 users have voted.

Comments

Lol, it must be mere coincidence. At any rate, those damn Russians are evidently much too busy sending me notifications of problems with non-existent Paypal and AppleID accounts to be bothering with spear-phishing those incompetents when there are computer illiterates like me around. On the other hand, they seem to fall for them, forming a valuable source of Russian National basement-dwelling teenager income...

Although if I ever find some totally hot, male Russian agent under my bed... I'll be off-line for a while. So far, I've had to throw them all back.

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35 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

@Ellen North lol! Give me enough vodka, I don't give a shit if he isn't (sober) hot!
Come on, Boris, let's do this thang!

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18 users have voted.

@on the cusp

Lol, once I find a good one, I'll have my dust-bunnies escort him to you once I'm done. If I ever am... ROFLMAO And Checking Quickly Under The Bed Again, In Case

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15 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

lotlizard's picture

@Ellen North

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16 users have voted.

@lotlizard

Lol, just raining dogs here, so far; still waiting for the right Russian cat!

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12 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

@Ellen North
russia.jpg

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23 users have voted.
Bollox Ref's picture

Elena, care of PutinMarriageGrrls.ru, is very worthy of interest.

Thank you Vladimir.

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14 users have voted.

Gëzuar!!

@Bollox Ref

Congratulations! Putin certainly multitasks admirably, doesn't he!

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10 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

movie buff's picture

This from just today:

Europe has been working to expose Russian meddling for years

Here's one choice tidbit:

In the recent French elections, the Kremlin-friendly presidential candidate lost to newcomer Emmanuel Macron, who was subjected to Russian hacking and false allegations in Russian-sponsored news outlets during the campaign. In Germany, all political parties have agreed not to employ automated bots in their social media campaigns because such hard-to-detect cyber tools are frequently used by Russia to circulate bogus news accounts.

That first sentence has been debunked by Macron's own government (although that doesn't stop WaPo from going back to the French thing later in the article) and the second sentence is just...weird. I think someone should tell German politicians that Russians wear pants, so they all must immediately take off their pants.

And this part was interesting:

And sometimes the effort goes face-to-face. Here in Riga, Vladi­mir Dorofeev, a 42-year-old reporter for the Kremlin’s Sputnik news site, widely regarded as a conduit for propaganda as well as news, found out personally how Latvian authorities deal with the challenge.
In Dorofeev’s first week on the job, the Latvian Security Police questioned him about Sputnik’s local staff size, its editor and its payment procedures.
“Aren’t you ashamed of yourself?” he said they asked him. “Do you understand they can use you?”

No word on whether they beat him senseless. But the message was clear: Riga will not tolerate Russians coming to their country and doing anything fishy with staff sizes and payment procedures. Latvia, like Wu-Tang Clan, ain't nuthin' to fuck with.

And I have to say, for an article bemoaning the alleged propaganda of others, the picture the Post put at the top--which shows a crowd watching a larger-than-life video image of Vladimir Putin's head--looks an awfully lot like the 'Two Minutes Hate' scene from 1984.

Just sayin'.

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28 users have voted.

"The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum." --Noam Chomsky

@movie buff

Luckily, most of us in Orwellian-land know that corporate media mention of 'bogus news' means 'facts they seriously do not want getting out'... Malice in Dunderland - not just for nightmares/bad SF anymore.

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17 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

lotlizard's picture

@Ellen North  
everything else is public relations.” —George Orwell

“Journalism is printing what elite folks have ‘curated’: everything else is conspiracy theory and 'fake news’.” —Barack Obama

https://www.counterpunch.org/2016/12/02/obama-and-propornot/
https://www.yahoo.com/news/obama-decries-wild-west-media-landscape-21464...

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18 users have voted.
thanatokephaloides's picture

It's time to face facts. There are Russians under your bed, under my bed, under everyone's bed,

No Russkies under my bed! That space belongs to the Chocolate kitty. And she Does. Not. like being surprised in it by strangers!

Wink

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15 users have voted.

"Some members of the government are now investigating opioid pain killers but they are investigating the wrong thing. Despair-masking drugs are not the problem. Despair is."
-- featheredsprite

CB's picture

@thanatokephaloides

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18 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@CB
Love the beagle:)

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10 users have voted.

The Democrats are beyond morally bankrupt. The Party’s very soul has been replaced with pure ratfuckery.

@CB

It's a Russian BLUE! Not Red at all!

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9 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

travelerxxx's picture

@Ellen North

Russian Blues, that is! Our little Holly is identical to that rascally spy cat in the video! Come to think of it, she just showed up at the door one day... Hmmmm....

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9 users have voted.
thanatokephaloides's picture

@CB

I am certain Choc isn't a Russian.

(Cute clip, although a bit cat-hater for my taste.....)

Smile

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8 users have voted.

"Some members of the government are now investigating opioid pain killers but they are investigating the wrong thing. Despair-masking drugs are not the problem. Despair is."
-- featheredsprite

CB's picture

@thanatokephaloides
a Russian identity. Our society instills distrust/fear of Russians from an early age so it is no wonder the average American is so easy to propagandize.

Several generations were raised on Boris Badenov and Natasha Fatale. When you say "Russia" they respond "Boris"? "Natasha"?

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7 users have voted.
edg's picture

that no Republicans on any of the committees investigating the Russian invasion of America have bothered to subpoena CrowdStrike and it's Russian-hating COO to ask them detailed technical questions about the so-called hacking.

And there was only one mild question to the FBI about why they didn't examine Clinton's email server themselves. What the heck are they doing with all that money in the FBI budget if they can't even conduct a simple forensic server exam?

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29 users have voted.
CB's picture

@edg
When this house of cards comes tumbling down, the FBI can blame Crowdstrike for misleading them.

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22 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@edg
speaking about this in front of congress.

This article is about Seth Rich and how he brought the democrats and the republicans together, but it goes to your question about why the republicans have stayed silent about the Russian 'hacks'.

How Seth Rich finally brought Dems, GOP together

The silence of Republicans – the very ones who could not stop slinging mud at Obama and Hillary – now that they could bring down the entire Democratic apparatus, is strangely conspicuous. An even bigger mystery is Trump. He could take the air from the tires of the Russia “collusion” story overnight, just by appointing a special investigator to examine the Seth Rich death. So why doesn’t he? Are they all just holding hands with the “Deep State,” doing the circle dance through the hall of mirrors?

The republicans also stayed quiet about the CIA and the state department running weapons out of the Benghazi embassy when Hillary was testifying before congress about the attack on the embassy. I think that they would have asked what was Stevens doing during the attack unless they already knew what the CIA were doing at the time.

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19 users have voted.

The Democrats are beyond morally bankrupt. The Party’s very soul has been replaced with pure ratfuckery.

@edg

Gee, maybe they're saving all of that FBI budget money along with their desiccated powder, just like the Dems, do you think?

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10 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

Pluto's Republic's picture

I find it mildly amazing that no Republicans on any of the committees investigating the Russian invasion of America have bothered to subpoena CrowdStrike and it's Russian-hating COO


I have this in my notes:

CrowdStrike's co-founder Dmitri Alperovitch and its president Shawn Henry turned down an invitation to testify on June 8 before the House Intelligence Committee about Russian interference in the U.S. election.

'They declined the invitation, so we're communicating with them about speaking to us privately,' said Jack Langer, a spokesperson for House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes.

@edg

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20 users have voted.

As it reaches its endgame, a poorly regulated capitalism becomes cannibalism.

@Pluto's Republic

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10 users have voted.
Pluto's Republic's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness

in the article I clipped it from in the Daily Mail.

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4 users have voted.

As it reaches its endgame, a poorly regulated capitalism becomes cannibalism.

@Pluto's Republic

I was questioning them.

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3 users have voted.
ppnortney's picture

@Pluto's Republic Gosh, it's such a major threat to our Democracy, Russians hacking our elections and stuff, which explains why the Republicans are frantically scrambling to get to the bottom of it and the Democrats are demanding they leave no stone unturned. /s

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0 users have voted.

Government is instituted for the common good; for the protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness of the people; and not for the profit, honor, or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men. - John Adams

@edg
'if you don't ask the right question the answer doesn't matter'- Orwell

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14 users have voted.

bygorry

Big Al's picture

terrorists. Just wait until they reveal that aliens do exist.

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19 users have voted.

@Big Al

There will be some not bought up by The Psychopaths That Be, and will have been merely blackmailed or bullied into it... pull the plug, or flush, whatever works. Hopefully, the sewer won't puke them back up again.

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10 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

At this point the democrats are in a mass psychosis and are immune to facts or even mere incredulity over some of the charges (Putin knew the Rust Belt was in play?). I don't even think at this point that the democrats are driven by cynical political calculus. But instead are driven by a rage to punish anybody and everybody over Clinton's loss. They will find ways to ignore or explain away anything that contradicts the narratives they have constructed.

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18 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

Tapper was telling congress how the DNC wouldn't let the FBI look at their comp. The only people who checked it was crowdstrike which its owner has ties to Russia.
Jimmy also talks about the Hillary/Russia uranium deal which she did when she was Secretary of State. She sold Russia 20% of our uranium and during this deal, Bill Clinton was paid $500,000 to give a speech. Plus the Clinton foundation received another donation after she completed the deal. She was told that she had to keep her foundation business separate from her duties as SOS.
This happened too many times to count and yet not one person from the government has said anything about it.
She also helped Boeing sell jets to Russia and again, Bill got paid....$$.$.the Clinton foundation received another donation.
Funny how no one has mentioned her ties to Russia.

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25 users have voted.

The Democrats are beyond morally bankrupt. The Party’s very soul has been replaced with pure ratfuckery.

@snoopydawg

As always, fabulous comment but regarding:

... The only people who checked it was crowdstrike which its owner has ties to Russia. ...

pardon my whoops, but did you mean to write 'ties to Russia' or anti-Russia? Speaking as the Typo Queen, of course, lol.

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12 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

snoopydawg's picture

@Ellen North
When I wrote my comment I was thinking that the owner of crowdstrike had ties with Russia. I thought that I had read an article that stated that, but now I can't find the article on this to back up my claim.
I instead found an article that states that the owner of crowdstrike is anti-Russian

The second article has lots of links to other information and I suggest that people read the whole article and click on them if they are interested.

This link goes to the report that crowdstrike gave to the DNC. It's pretty long and I haven't read it yet.
Crowdstrike report

Cybersecurity Firm That Attributed DNC Hacks to Russia May Have Fabricated Russia Hacking in Ukraine

In lieu of substantive evidence provided to the public that the alleged hacks which led to Wikileaks releases of DNC and Clinton Campaign Manager John Podesta’s emails were orchestrated by the Russian Government, CrowdStrike’s bias has been cited as undependable in its own assessment, in addition to its skeptical methods and conclusions. The firm’s CTO and co-founder, Dmitri Alperovitch, is a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, a think tank with openly anti-Russian sentiments that is funded by Ukrainian billionaire Victor Pinchuk, who also happened to donate at least $10 million to the Clinton Foundation.

Gee, no conflict of interest here Smile

Hopefully this makes sense. I have one of my famous migraines. Sigh

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16 users have voted.

The Democrats are beyond morally bankrupt. The Party’s very soul has been replaced with pure ratfuckery.

Pluto's Republic's picture

@snoopydawg

Dmitri Alperovitch and his father immigrated to the US when Dmitri was a teenager. They are likely Ukrainian, but it was the Soviet Union when they left.

Dmitri Alperovitch hates Russia as only a proto-nazi Ukrainian can. All his ilk wants the US to go to war with Russia. He has been busted in the past for posting phony anti-Russian data in his intelligence reports. He was under contract with the FBI at the time he was called in on the DNC leak.

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16 users have voted.

As it reaches its endgame, a poorly regulated capitalism becomes cannibalism.

I thought I would give it go and predict future leaks.

The collusion narrative is getting mixed up with too many people. Leaks will reveal that the Russians sent an actual agent to the Trump campaign while an actual Russian agent infiltrated Hillary's campaign. This is how communications happened between Trump and Vlad.

Some sort of accusations will be created around Melania Trump. She is too Slavic.

Serious charges will be raised against Putin beyond some vague notion that he effected the election. For example, supporting the Taliban (previous charge), arming ISIS in France, or blamed for any disaster which took American or EU lives. Unnamed sources with secret evidence. Trump will look like a real traitor.

Sleeper cells everywhere in America who infiltrated election boards.

I asked the Russians under my bed about the predications. They would give it up only if I got them some Whoppers.

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15 users have voted.

@MrWebster

Lol, the Dems are coming out with plenty of Russian-directed whoppers, but these are not sweet treats, just more Big Lies.

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6 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

mimi's picture

I am a German innocent maiden (ahem) and do YOU know what is in my bed? Don't get jealous, Uncle Sam.

Ok, now I will really read all your comments and not understand half of them. What a waste of hilarious fun.

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6 users have voted.

"History is what the present chooses to remember" - Eric Foner

EdMass's picture

Let's see. Trolls, Terrorists, Bogey Man, Freddie Krueger, Dust Bunnies. Check, check, check, check, check.

No Ruuussiianns.

What am I doing wrong?

This might help?

Eliminate Monsters Under the Bed.

http://www.wikihow.com/Eliminate-Monsters-Under-the-Bed

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9 users have voted.

“The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy defines the marketing devision of the Sirius Cybernetic Corporation as "a bunch of mindless jerks who'll be the first against the wall when the revolution comes.”

Stop The War!

Great essay. What I believe to be the intentional blurring of lines regarding the spear-phishing that actually occurred has root in a much more boring and pervasive situation I've heard referred to as the entitled CEO syndrome. For instance, every company I've worked for, the people closest to the top are among the most likely to fall for any phishing or install every malware, but they always scream bloody murder when we try to give them the same security settings as everyone else (although there's never a legitimate reason they need administrator access other than ego.)

If the story was accurately reported as spear-phishing, that would show that those who were phished had to respond to the same kind of emails even my grandmother was sharp enough to recognize as spam and delete. While the Russia story was already in progress and this provides a way to move that along, at the same time it prevents people like John Podesta to having to answer for being taken in by an extremely common thing. As a bonus, it also deflects attention from the DNC's lack security. It's the whole lack of responsibility that permeates the DNC that is literally bringing us to the brink of war.

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10 users have voted.