Voices from Russia

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Sputnik Editor-in-Chief Gives Some Advice to the “Dear CIA”

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On Sunday, RT and Sputnik Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan said that the Western establishment considers Russia “abnormal” by default and gave the CIA some caustic advice on how to prevent Russia from being perceived as “normal” in the West. Simonyan wrote in her blog:

For the majority of the Western Establishment, the idea that Russia is normal is as wild as the suggestion that the Earth is square… Everyone stopped caring about facts long ago. There’s a conclusion that Russia is abnormal with all that follows. Facts have to be adjusted to fit the conclusion.

According to the RT editor-in-chief, part of the Establishment’s dislike for US President Donald Trump stems from his seeming willingness to review the relationship with Russia. Simonyan gave a few acerbic recommendations to the CIA on how to ensure that the public opinion of Russia doesn’t change, including constant reminders about hackers and Trump’s relations with Moscow:

Remind people about the cunning of RT and Sputnik. Use the most fear-inducing vocabulary. There’s no need to look for a newsworthy event, the people are used to it.

She cited the example of NATO spokeswoman Oana Lungescu calling Sputnik “part of the propaganda machine” in an interview with the BBC. Simonyan added sarcastically that a political assassination of a prominent activist or a politician would be a fail-safe way to avoid normalising relations with Russia and suggested that the CIA arrange that, noting that she made her suggestion “in an ironic context” and it was in no way an actual call for action.

On 6 January, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) released a report saying US intelligence agencies, including the CIA, had a high degree of confidence that Russia meddled in the US presidential election. On 7 January, Simonyan said that the report was poorly prepared and jokingly offered some facts the CIA could use in future.

12 February 2017

Sputnik International

https://sputniknews.com/analysis/201702121050597190-sputnik-rt-simonyan-cia-advice/

Editor:

My, my, my, the CIA complains of “Russian meddling in the US Presidential election”… I seem to recall that’s a favourite Langley tactic… meddling in foreign elections or overthrowing people that the US Deep State doesn’t like. I seem to recall that V F Yanukovich was the legitimate President of the Ukraine… didn’t Langley have a hand in his overthrow, kids? It seems to me that Langley is lying, yet again. Do note what they’re saying… “Donald Trump isn’t the legit prez because the Russians interfered”.

Stay tuned… the poker game between Trump and the Deep State has only begun…

BMD

Friday, 9 December 2016

Rostelecom Repels DDoS Attacks on Five Largest Financial Institutions in Russia

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On Friday, telecom giant Rostelecom stated that it thwarted DDoS-attacks on the five largest banks and financial institutions in Russia. All the attacks were on 5 December 2016, the longest of them lasting for over two hours. Muslim Medzhlumov, director of the Rostelecom Cybersecurity Centre, said in a statement posted published on the company’s website:

The analysis of the attack sources carried out by Rostelecom specialists revealed that the traffic was generated from the home routers of users usually referred to IoT devices. A distinctive feature of the attacks was that they were organised with the help of devices that support the CWMP Management Protocol (TR-069). A few weeks ago, a serious vulnerability was revealed in the implementation of this protocol on a number of devices from different manufacturers, which allows attackers [to] organise DDoS-attacks. At the beginning of last week, the largest German operator Deutsche Telecom had an attack on users’ home devices, as well as the Irish provider Eircom.

On 2 December, the Federal Security Service (FSB) reported that it’d received intelligence of foreign intelligence services preparing large-scale cyber-attacks in Russia in the period starting from 5 December 2016, aimed at destabilising Russia’s financial system and the activities of a number of major Russian banks. A RIA Novosti source close to the Central Bank reported that the Bank of Russia recorded several attacks on 5 December on the site of VTB Bank Group.

On Tuesday, President V V Putin signed into effect an updated doctrine on information security. It states that the limitless flow of information has a negative impact on international security, as it can be employed to pursue geopolitical and military goals, thus favouring organized crime, extremists, and terrorists. The doctrine notes that foreign intelligence services target Russian government agencies, scientific centres, and military industries using electronic and cyber surveillance. To counter threats and challenges in the information environment, Russia will build “strategic deterrents” and step up efforts to “prevent armed conflicts that stem from the use of IT”. The doctrine also instructs government agencies to strengthen critical information infrastructure to protect against cyber and computer network attacks.

9 December 2016

RT

https://www.rt.com/news/369738-ddos-attacks-russia-banks/

Editor:

The Anglos blubber about nonexistent Russian cyberattacks… as they mount their own bumbling attacks on Russia. Russian geeks are the tops… this shows it… it’s why I have Kaspersky on my machine… it’s been the best, it’s protected me from all kinds of cyberworld mugging, so, I’ve never regretted “going Russian”… so should you.

BMD

Saturday, 15 October 2016

Ambassador to the USA Kislyak sez Moscow has no Legal or Moral Grounds for Snowden’s Extradition

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Ambassador to the USA Sergei Kislyak said that Edward Snowden’s extradition to the USA is impossible on “legal and moral” grounds. Speaking in the wake of the WikiLeaks ‘Podesta emails’ revelations, he also denied Russian interference in US internal affairs:

When Mr Snowden got stuck at a Russian airport, we didn’t have any legal or moral reasons to give him to the government of the United States, for the very simple reason that we don’t have an agreement for mutual extradition, because the USA refused to have one with us.

On Tuesday, Kislyak was at Johns Hopkins University to talk about “what Russia is and what it’s not”… he also acknowledged the “very unfortunate” relations between Moscow and Washington. Snowden’s asylum in Russia, where he arrived in 2013 after leaking documents related to the NSA’s foreign and domestic surveillance operations, hit Russian-American relations, signalling a major setback. Followed by the conflict in the Ukraine and the continuing disagreement over Syria, bilateral ties reached new lows. Most recently, during the US election campaign, voices in Washington blamed Russia for hacking attacks on its computer systems. On Friday, the Obama administration officially accused Russia of directing the hacks of emails and documents and their posting on WikiLeaks and DCLeaks. On Sunday, Hillary Clinton blamed Moscow for trying to interfere in the US election process. In his opening remarks, Kislyak said:

I’d also like to say that we are watching very carefully the election campaign in this country. Yes, we do and no, I’m not going to comment on this, because we don’t interfere into internal affairs of the United States, neither by my statement nor by electronic and other means.

Referring to hacking accusations, he said:

It’s not correct. We’ve seen a number of statements by our colleagues in American intelligence on a number of issues that weren’t exactly proved by the history. I won’t speculate further.

White House spokesman John Earnest told reporters that regardless of Russia’s denial and lack of factual evidence, the Obama Administration is weighing a “proportional response”. He added that whatever Barack Obama decides on, they wouldn’t announce it in advance and might never disclose it. Earnest said:

It’s certainly possible that the president can choose response options that we never announce.

12 October 2016

RT

https://www.rt.com/news/362449-russia-extradite-snowden-hacking/

Editor:

The arrogance and vacuity of the Duopoly now regnant in Washington is apparent to all comers. “Whatever Barack Obama decides on, they wouldn’t announce it in advance and might never disclose it”. Well… dog my cat, as the great philosopher Jed Clampett said. Everyone has to kiss America’s ass, eat its shit, and like it. There was a short window in the nineties when that was true… it isn’t true today. Clinton, Johnson, and Trump are all sleepwalking in the 90s Bizarro World… only Jill Stein isn’t.

Vote for the only sane candidate. The other three are puppets of the oligarchs… furthermore, they’re stuck in a timewarp… America the Great… America the Great… they believe their own mantra. God have mercy on us all.

BMD

Saturday, 20 August 2016

“Weapons Better Than Stuxnet”: NSA Spies Get Hacked

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Someone hacked the US National Security Agency, considered the world’s most advanced electronic espionage and surveillance group. An anonymous group of hackers calling itself the Shadow Brokers said that it breached the networks of the world’s most advanced spying agency, the NSA. On Monday, the hacker group claimed that it extracted software used by the NSA to hack computers and networks belonging to governments and corporations, including Cisco Systems and Fortinet Inc. The Shadow Brokers released a bit of the captured data (some 300 MB) on the web to prove their claim. Security experts analysed the files and agreed that the software is authentic. Curiously, the hackers put the rest of the software on an online auction, aiming to collect 1 billion USD (63.9 billion Roubles. 6.62 billion Renminbi. 67.14 billion INR. 1.286 billion CAD. 1.312 billion AUD. 883 million Euros. 765 million UK Pounds) in bitcoins. They claim that the package has software “weapons better than Stuxnet”, a malicious worm that caused significant damage to computer networks serving the Iranian nuclear programme. When the online auction raises one million bitcoins (some 568 million USD (36.3 billion Roubles. 3.76 billion Renminbi. 38.14 billion INR. 730 million CAD. 745 million AUD. 502 million Euros. 435 million UK Pounds)), the group says that it’d release another chunk of software to the public free of charge. The group claims that it successfully hacked the NSA’s Equation Group division. Moscow-based software security group Kaspersky Lab first announced the Equation Group’s existence in 2015. Kaspersky called the Equation Group the most sophisticated cyber-attack group in the world, and “the most advanced… we have seen”. Whistleblower Edward Snowden provided documents that allowed the Intercept to confirm that the Equation Group has connections with the NSA.

The malware package is part of the NSA’s involvement in violating vulnerabilities in computer systems, which first became public in 2014, when President Barack Obama signed an order that government agencies must disclose discovered vulnerabilities to developers. However, according to Wired, this order had a major loophole, in that one can keep secret and exploit vulnerabilities that have “a clear national security or law enforcement” significance. This led to creating a massive arsenal of attack software, now in hands of unknown hackers. NSA-veteran-turned-whistleblower William Binney told Sputnik’s Loud & Clear that the Agency “has a tendency not to fix things”, as once they report a vulnerability, “this window is closed for them and they can’t see through it”. Binney thought that this particular attack was likely an inside job. He stated that the NSA network isn’t physically part of the internet, so someone inside the NSA, “another Snowden-type person”, must have compromised the software and handled it over to the Shadow Brokers. If that isn’t the case, and if the internal network was, in fact, breached from the outside, “the implications are much, much greater in terms of compromising information and data than simply [someone] draining their exploitation software”. Binney also underscored the clear and present danger that, should the offensive software fall into hands of foreign specialists, it could be reverse-engineered, updated, and used for attacks even after they patch the exposed vulnerabilities. Binney believes that Iran is already studying Stuxnet, seeking to reverse engineer and upgrade it, to use it in its own interests.

Edward Snowden suggested that Russia is behind Shadow Brokers, tweeting, “Circumstantial evidence and conventional wisdom indicates Russian responsibility”. James A Lewis, of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, added to his comments, suggesting that the NSA dump is “some Russian mind game”. Snowden observed:

The NSA leak is likely a warning that someone can prove US responsibility for any attacks that originated from this [NSA] malware server. That could have significant foreign policy consequences. Particularly, if any of those operations targeted US allies.

Thus, a simple hack balloons from being a cyber-security issue to, possibly, becoming a full-scale foreign policy crisis.

20 August 2016

Sputnik International

http://sputniknews.com/us/20160820/1044450599/nsa-hacked-shadow-brokers-malware.html

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