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posted by martyb on Friday August 19 2016, @01:03PM   Printer-friendly
from the Who-knows-what-evil-lurks-in-the-hearts-of-machinery?-The-Shadow-Brokers-do! dept.

Excerpt:

"It's certainly possible that an NSA [National Security Agency] hacker goofed massively and left files in the wrong place at the wrong time. Human error can never be ruled out. Russian cybersleuths carefully watch for possible NSA operations online—just as we look for theirs—and even a single slip-up with Top Secret hacking tools could invite a disastrous compromise.

However, it's far more likely that this information was stolen by an insider. There's something fishy about the official story here. It's far-fetched to think a small group of unknown hackers could infiltrate NSA. Furthermore, explained a former agency scientist, the set-up implied in the account given by The Shadow Brokers makes little sense: "No one puts their exploits on a [command-and-control] server...That's not a thing." In other words, there was no "hack" here at all.

It's much more plausible that NSA has a Kremlin mole (or moles) lurking in its ranks who stole this information and passed it to Russian intelligence for later use. This isn't surprising, since NSA has known since at least 2010 of one or more Russian moles in its ranks and agency counterintelligence has yet to expose them."


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  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 19 2016, @04:13PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 19 2016, @04:13PM (#390131)

    NSA has known since at least 2010 of one or more Russian moles in its ranks and agency counterintelligence has yet to expose them."

    why haven't they caught them in six years and why would they tell anyone there is a mole? everything about this runs counter to logic. what makes more sense is this story is simply speculative enough to be a cover story and you can't prove a negative which makes it irrefutable.

    What doesn't make sense about this? Let's take a more intuitive example to illustrate what could be going on: Hollywood.

    You have Galactic Films, a major producer of movies. They notice that their latest movie, "Y-Men: Apocalypse Tomorrow," was distributed on a bittorrent website a week before their film opening weekend. Moreover, their previous movie, "Iced," likewise was on bittorrent a week before release, as had their previous movie, "What About Susan?"

    It's easy to know they have a mole in their ranks, as their movies have leaked inappropriately. However, there are so many people (actors, producers, directors, critics, etc) who have had contact with their movies that they don't know who the person is. They may be able to narrow it down to a few hundred, or maybe a few dozen people, but that's still a lot. Moreover, these are among the most important people to their business; who wants to risk offending a powerful movie critic with a false accusation?

    So they know they have a mole, but aren't sure who it is. As for why they would discuss it, that could be to either get the mole to stop (from fear) or to react in a way they can spot.

    I'm sure you can see the parallels between this and the situation an intelligence agency may (or may not) be in.

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