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  • Wash. Post: More fake news about Russian hacking...

    "Grizzly Steppe" is the fake Russian hacking operation which supposedly was used to defeat Hillary Clinton. It was apparently also the fake Russian hacking operation which used to supposedly penetrate our electrical grid...
    JAN 1, 2017

    'Fake News' And How The Washington Post Rewrote Its Story On Russian Hacking Of The Power Grid

    Kalev Leetaru , CONTRIBUTOR

    On Friday the Washington Post sparked a wave of fear when it ran the breathless headline “Russian hackers penetrated U.S. electricity grid through a utility in Vermont, U.S. officials say.” The lead sentence offered “A code associated with the Russian hacking operation dubbed Grizzly Steppe by the Obama administration has been detected within the system of a Vermont utility, according to U.S. officials” and continued “While the Russians did not actively use the code to disrupt operations of the utility, according to officials who spoke on condition of anonymity in order to discuss a security matter, the penetration of the nation’s electrical grid is significant because it represents a potentially serious vulnerability.”

    Yet, it turns out this narrative was false and as the chronology below will show, illustrates how effectively false and misleading news can ricochet through the global news echo chamber through the pages of top tier newspapers that fail to properly verify their facts.

    [...]

    [A]s the Post’s story ricocheted through the politically charged environment, other media outlets and technology experts began questioning the Post’s claims and the utility company itself finally issued a formal statement at 9:37PM EST, just an hour and a half after the Post's publication, pushing back on the Post’s claims: “We detected the malware in a single Burlington Electric Department laptop not connected to our organization’s grid systems. We took immediate action to isolate the laptop and alerted federal officials of this finding.”

    From Russian hackers burrowed deep within the US electrical grid, ready to plunge the nation into darkness at the flip of a switch, an hour and a half later the story suddenly became that a single non-grid laptop had a piece of malware on it and that the laptop was not connected to the utility grid in any way.

    However, it was not until almost a full hour after the utility’s official press release (at around 10:30PM EST) that the Post finally updated its article, changing the headline to the more muted “Russian operation hacked a Vermont utility, showing risk to U.S. electrical grid security, officials say” and changed the body of the article to note “Burlington Electric said in a statement that the company detected a malware code used in the Grizzly Steppe operation in a laptop that was not connected to the organization’s grid systems. The firm said it took immediate action to isolate the laptop and alert federal authorities.” Yet, other parts of the article, including a later sentence claiming that multiple computers at the utility had been breached, remained intact.

    The following morning, nearly 11 hours after changing the headline and rewriting the article to indicate that the grid itself was never breached and the “hack” was only an isolated laptop with malware, the Post still had not appended any kind of editorial note to indicate that it had significantly changed the focus of the article.

    [...]

    Only after numerous outlets called out the Post’s changes did the newspaper finally append an editorial note at the very bottom of the article more than half a day later saying “An earlier version of this story incorrectly said that Russian hackers had penetrated the U.S. electric grid. Authorities say there is no indication of that so far. The computer at Burlington Electric that was hacked was not attached to the grid.”

    Yet, even this correction is not a true reflection of public facts as known. The utility indicated only that a laptop was found to contain malware that has previously been associated with Russian hackers. As many pointed out, the malware in question is actually available for purchase online, meaning anyone could have used it and its mere presence is not a guarantee of Russian government involvement.

    [...]

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/kalevlee.../#6be14d1d291e
    Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

  • #2
    My,my, my what's with all your sudden defenses of all things Russian. Did your company get a new contract for oil exploration in the Arctic or something?
    "Ask not what your country can do for you"

    Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

    you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Half Pint John View Post
      My,my, my what's with all your sudden defenses of all things Russian. Did your company get a new contract for oil exploration in the Arctic or something?
      This may help... Reading Activities For Struggling Readers
      Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

      Comment


      • #4
        When will the Russia hysteria fade away?
        Russia Hysteria Infects WashPost Again: False Story About Hacking U.S. Electric Grid


        Glenn Greenwald
        December 31 2016

        THE WASHINGTON POST on Friday reported a genuinely alarming event: Russian hackers have penetrated the U.S. power system through an electrical grid in Vermont. The Post headline conveyed the seriousness of the threat:



        The first sentence of the article directly linked this cyberattack to alleged Russian hacking of the email accounts of the DNC and John Podesta — what is now routinely referred to as “Russian hacking of our election” — by referencing the code name revealed on Wednesday by the Obama administration when it announced sanctions on Russian officials: “A code associated with the Russian hacking operation dubbed Grizzly Steppe by the Obama administration has been detected within the system of a Vermont utility, according to U.S. officials.”

        [...]

        The article went on and on in that vein, with all the standard tactics used by the U.S. media for such stories: quoting anonymous national security officials, reviewing past acts of Russian treachery, and drawing the scariest possible conclusions (“‘The question remains: Are they in other systems and what was the intent?’ a U.S. official said”).

        The media reactions, as Alex Pfeiffer documents, were exactly what one would expect: hysterical, alarmist proclamations of Putin’s menacing evil...

        [...]

        The Post’s story also predictably and very rapidly infected other large media outlets. Reuters thus told its readers around the world: “A malware code associated with Russian hackers has reportedly been detected within the system of a Vermont electric utility.”



        WHAT’S THE PROBLEM here? It did not happen.

        There was no “penetration of the U.S. electricity grid.” The truth was undramatic and banal. Burlington Electric, after receiving a Homeland Security notice sent to all U.S. utility companies about the malware code found in the DNC system, searched all its computers and found the code in a single laptop that was not connected to the electric grid.

        [...]

        So the key scary claim of the Post story — that Russian hackers had penetrated the U.S. electric grid — was false. All the alarmist tough-guy statements issued by political officials who believed the Post’s claim were based on fiction.

        Even worse, there is zero evidence that Russian hackers were even responsible for the implanting of this malware on this single laptop. The fact that malware is “Russian-made” does not mean that only Russians can use it; indeed, like a lot of malware, it can be purchased (as Jeffrey Carr has pointed out in the DNC hacking context, assuming that Russian-made malware must have been used by Russians is as irrational as finding a Russian-made Kalishnikov AKM rifle at a crime scene and assuming the killer must be Russian).

        As the actual truth emerged once the utility company issued its statement, the Post rushed to fix its embarrassment, beginning by dramatically changing its headline:



        The headline is still absurd: They have no idea that this malware was placed by a “Russian operation” (though they would likely justify that by pointing out that they are just stenographically passing along what “officials say”). Moreover, nobody knows when this malware was put on this laptop, how, or by whom. But whatever else is true, the key claim — “Russian hackers penetrated U.S. electricity grid” — has now been replaced by the claim that this all shows “risk to U.S. electrical grid.”

        [...]

        THIS MATTERS NOT only because one of the nation’s major newspapers once again published a wildly misleading, fearmongering story about Russia. It matters even more because it reflects the deeply irrational and ever-spiraling fever that is being cultivated in U.S. political discourse and culture about the threat posed by Moscow.

        [...]

        The level of groupthink, fearmongering, coercive peer pressure, and über-nationalism has not been seen since the halcyon days of 2002 and 2003. Indeed, the very same people who back then smeared anyone questioning official claims as Saddam sympathizers or stooges and left-wing un-American loons are back for their sequel, accusing anyone who expresses any skepticism toward claims about Russia of being Putin sympathizers and Kremlin operatives and stooges.

        [...]

        Few things are more dangerous to the journalistic function than groupthink, and few instruments have been invented that foster and reinforce groupthink like social media, particularly Twitter, the platform most used by journalists. That’s a phenomenon that merits far more study, but examples like this one highlight the dynamic.

        In this case, the effect is a constant ratcheting up of tensions between two nuclear-armed powers whose nuclear systems are still on hair-trigger alert and capable of catastrophic responses based on misunderstanding and misperception. Democrats and their media allies are rightly alarmed about the potential dangers of Trump’s bellicose posture toward China, but remarkably and recklessly indifferent to the dangers of what they themselves are doing here.

        [...]

        UPDATE: Just as The Guardian had to do just two days ago regarding its claim about WikiLeaks and Putin, the Washington Post has now added an editor’s note to its story acknowledging that its key claim was false:



        Is it not very clear that journalistic standards are being casually dispensed with when the subject is Russia?

        https://theintercept.com/2016/12/31/...electric-grid/
        Last edited by The Doctor; 04 Jan 17, 07:22.
        Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

        Comment


        • #5
          It's good to see Trump has not been stampeded by the 'fake news'. As President-elect, Trump shows more Presidential poise than Obama after 8 years in the Presidential seat.
          Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

          Comment


          • #6
            When is the media going to criticize Obama McCarthyism? Back when Russia was communist the left demonized anyone who suggested the Russians were actively infiltrating Western Society.
            We hunt the hunters

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Half Pint John View Post
              My,my, my what's with all your sudden defenses of all things Russian. Did your company get a new contract for oil exploration in the Arctic or something?
              The Trumpsters will defend Trump no matter what he does-fraud, being a sexual predator, lying, and just being plain stupid.
              We are not now that strength which in old days
              Moved earth and heaven; that which we are we are; One equal temper of heroic hearts
              Made weak by time and fate but strong in will
              To strive to seek to find and not to yield.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Massena View Post
                The Trumpsters...
                Can read.
                Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by The Doctor View Post
                  Can read.
                  Aint it amazing- your thread is so good they can't argue with it, so they just start a mirror-thread about the same thing but without all your posts, for which they have no argument.

                  Arguing with Kindergardeners about Santa would be more sensible.
                  And probably more productive.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by The Exorcist View Post
                    Aint it amazing- your thread is so good they can't argue with it, so they just start a mirror-thread about the same thing but without all your posts, for which they have no argument.

                    Arguing with Kindergardeners about Santa would be more sensible.
                    And probably more productive.

                    It's Worse Than Bush Derangement Syndrome
                    ...

                    This is basically the same format as the Gorebal Warming arguments...
                    Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The Washington Post fake news was even worse than initially reported and partially the result of misinformation from anonymous "U.S. officials"...
                      What the Washington Post’s Hacked Electrical Grid Report Got Wrong

                      Robert Hackett
                      Updated: Jan 03, 2017

                      A Washington Post report on Friday said that Russian hackers had breached the nation's power grid via a utility in Vermont, citing unnamed U.S. officials. Almost immediately, digital security experts panned the story, criticizing it as prematurely alarmist and lacking key details.

                      The supposed discovery linked "code" found on the utility's computer network to Russian election meddlers, who were widely believed to be Kremlin-sponsored and associated with state security and intelligence agencies such as the FSB and GRU. The finding came a day after the government published an intelligence report, criticized by many as overly broad, claiming to contain evidence of a Moscow-backed election interference campaign dubbed "Grizzly Steppe."

                      Soon after the initial Post story appeared, Burlington Electric came forward as the reportedly hacked organization. The municipally-owned utility clarified that had it had "detected the malware" on a single laptop, separate from its grid systems.

                      In other words, the main premise of the Post story—indeed, its headline—turned out to be incorrect. The breach involved a solitary laptop and no penetration of the grid, the Post said in an editor's note appended Saturday.

                      [...]

                      The code in question was not a malicious software program, as some people suspected, but rather the appearance of a certain Internet connection.

                      In a follow-up story published Monday evening, a different set of Post reporters—citing more unnamed officials—revealed that a security alert at Burlington Electric had tripped when an employee accessed a Yahoo (YHOO, +2.98%) email account. The alerts had been put in place after the Department of Homeland Security issued an industry-wide warning to the nation's utilities, pointing to certain IP addresses contained in its "Grizzly Steppe" report, jointly produced with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

                      [...]

                      Before the investigators who were responding to Burlington Electric's findings could suss out what really happened within the utility's computer network, U.S. officials had apparently tipped the Post to an incomplete version of the news. It's unclear whether the U.S. officials relayed inaccurate information, whether the reporters made false assumptions, or a combination. Then, the report spread like a computer worm.

                      The dubious attribution to Russian hackers in the Burlington Electric incident—specifically, to Russian hackers associated with U.S. election mischief—arose because the utility had detected Internet connections that seemed to be linked to "Grizzly Steppe," per the government's report, despite the intelligence containing a range of IP addresses not exclusive to that hacking campaign. Indeed, a significant chunk of the IP addresses listed in the joint report mapped to ordinary proxy servers that privacy advocates, digital attackers, and others use to mask their tracks, as analyses of the set have showed.

                      Cybersecurity experts who had pored over the White House-mandated "Grizzly Steppe" report, expecting to find revelations about the tactics of Russian election hackers, were disappointed to discover that the paper contained little actionable information. For security teams looking to find and block Russian malware, the data was "nearly useless," as one expert, Robert Lee, founder of Dragos Security, put it in a widely read critique.

                      [...]

                      http://fortune.com/2017/01/03/hacked...-report-wrong/
                      Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by The Doctor View Post
                        The Washington Post fake news was even worse than initially reported and partially the result of misinformation from anonymous "U.S. officials"...
                        What the Washington Post’s Hacked Electrical Grid Report Got Wrong

                        Robert Hackett
                        Updated: Jan 03, 2017

                        A Washington Post report on Friday said that Russian hackers had breached the nation's power grid via a utility in Vermont, citing unnamed U.S. officials. Almost immediately, digital security experts panned the story, criticizing it as prematurely alarmist and lacking key details.

                        The supposed discovery linked "code" found on the utility's computer network to Russian election meddlers, who were widely believed to be Kremlin-sponsored and associated with state security and intelligence agencies such as the FSB and GRU. The finding came a day after the government published an intelligence report, criticized by many as overly broad, claiming to contain evidence of a Moscow-backed election interference campaign dubbed "Grizzly Steppe."

                        Soon after the initial Post story appeared, Burlington Electric came forward as the reportedly hacked organization. The municipally-owned utility clarified that had it had "detected the malware" on a single laptop, separate from its grid systems.

                        In other words, the main premise of the Post story—indeed, its headline—turned out to be incorrect. The breach involved a solitary laptop and no penetration of the grid, the Post said in an editor's note appended Saturday.

                        [...]

                        The code in question was not a malicious software program, as some people suspected, but rather the appearance of a certain Internet connection.

                        In a follow-up story published Monday evening, a different set of Post reporters—citing more unnamed officials—revealed that a security alert at Burlington Electric had tripped when an employee accessed a Yahoo (YHOO, +2.98%) email account. The alerts had been put in place after the Department of Homeland Security issued an industry-wide warning to the nation's utilities, pointing to certain IP addresses contained in its "Grizzly Steppe" report, jointly produced with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

                        [...]

                        Before the investigators who were responding to Burlington Electric's findings could suss out what really happened within the utility's computer network, U.S. officials had apparently tipped the Post to an incomplete version of the news. It's unclear whether the U.S. officials relayed inaccurate information, whether the reporters made false assumptions, or a combination. Then, the report spread like a computer worm.

                        The dubious attribution to Russian hackers in the Burlington Electric incident—specifically, to Russian hackers associated with U.S. election mischief—arose because the utility had detected Internet connections that seemed to be linked to "Grizzly Steppe," per the government's report, despite the intelligence containing a range of IP addresses not exclusive to that hacking campaign. Indeed, a significant chunk of the IP addresses listed in the joint report mapped to ordinary proxy servers that privacy advocates, digital attackers, and others use to mask their tracks, as analyses of the set have showed.

                        Cybersecurity experts who had pored over the White House-mandated "Grizzly Steppe" report, expecting to find revelations about the tactics of Russian election hackers, were disappointed to discover that the paper contained little actionable information. For security teams looking to find and block Russian malware, the data was "nearly useless," as one expert, Robert Lee, founder of Dragos Security, put it in a widely read critique.

                        [...]

                        http://fortune.com/2017/01/03/hacked...-report-wrong/


                        I'm wondering if "Washington Post" is pronounced "Pravda" in Russian.
                        Nice to have a major newspaper serve as a party organ.


                        Speaking of "fake news", I have noticed that the chicago media is now referring to the hacking of podesta and the DNC as "hacking the election", which is a demonstrably false statement.

                        And the left used to complain about a few "birthers" being a problem.
                        Avatar is General Gerard, courtesy of Zouave.

                        Churchill to Chamberlain: you had a choice between war and dishonor. You chose dishonor, and you will have war.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Cambronnne View Post
                          I'm wondering if "Washington Post" is pronounced "Pravda" in Russian.
                          Nice to have a major newspaper serve as a party organ.


                          Speaking of "fake news", I have noticed that the chicago media is now referring to the hacking of podesta and the DNC as "hacking the election", which is a demonstrably false statement.

                          And the left used to complain about a few "birthers" being a problem.
                          "Hacking the election" is just following the Goebbels "Big Lie" model.
                          • The Facts: The malware used to hack Podesta's email had Russian "fingerprints" and WikiLeaks published his emails.
                          • The Big Lie: Russia hacked the election to help Trump win.


                          The funniest thing is that the Big Lie was inconceivable from the release of the Billy Bush video, right up until the AP called Wisconsin for Trump...
                          Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

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