Wikileaks – Can the CIA hack you and make it look like someone else?

Somehow in the back of our minds we knew this, but didn’t want to believe it: can the CIA hack you and make it look like someone else? The answer is yes. They can steal every file on your computer. Their hacking tools can be stolen by other governments, making them a menace to our own Congress and President. The Wikileaks revelations are proof that the US government is out of control and has been for quite some time. This cover from today’s New York Daily News says it all:


How do they make it look like someone else? In the Wikileaks section that talks about the “umbrage” team, it reveals that the CIA has a trove of stolen (“borrowed”) malware from other nations and has been adapted for their use. The “fingerprint” of the hack then becomes that nation. Russia sound familiar?

Wikileaks stated:

“The CIA’s hand crafted hacking techniques pose a problem for the agency. Each technique it has created forms a “fingerprint” that can be used by forensic investigators to attribute multiple different attacks to the same entity.

This is analogous to finding the same distinctive knife wound on multiple separate murder victims. The unique wounding style creates suspicion that a single murderer is responsible. As soon one murder in the set is solved then the other murders also find likely attribution.

The CIA’s Remote Devices Branch‘s UMBRAGE group collects and maintainsa substantial library of attack techniques ‘stolen’ from malware produced in other states including the Russian Federation.” 

Who is the leaker?

The CIA and FBI are desperately trying to find the leaker, according to the Washington Post.

“The leak rattled government and technology industry officials, who spent Tuesday scrambling to determine the accuracy and scope of the thousands of documents released by the group. They were also trying to assess the damage the revelations may cause, and what damage may come from future releases promised by WikiLeaks, these people said.

It was all a familiar scenario for a government that has repeatedly seen sensitive information compromised in recent years.”

Chelsea Manning, Edward Snowden, Harold T. Martin III…just some of the recent cases of theft of documents that have ended up publicly disclosed. Tech companies are trying to find patches for their compromised software. All in all, the Wikileaks revelations have been a huge, mind-numbing disaster for both the intelligence community and tech companies.

The CIA hasn’t been shy about classifying anything they think might get them in trouble:

They can make YOUR phone spy on numerous Wi-Fi networks around you:

What is the answer?  Microsoft is calling for a “Digital Geneva Convention.” That’s nice. But what do you do with rogue states that do not adhere to the tenants of the convention? What do you do with a CIA that has amassed hacking tools that it uses at will to do whatever it wants with “no” oversight (they claim to have oversight, by the way)?  It’s going to be tough to “retain the world’s trust” now.

H/T Uncle Sam’s Misguided Children


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Faye Higbee

Faye Higbee is the columnist manager for Uncle Sam's Misguided Children. All of her posts on Conservative Firing Line are also posted on Uncle Sam's.

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