Infiltrated dot Net

Enemy of the Cyberstate
Written by J. Oquendo   

Researcher Jacob Applebaum recently made some statements that raised my eyebrows. "it appears the United States of America had been involved in illegal break ins in Berlin, Germany. Jacob Appelbaum, a Berlin-based US journalist with access to some of Edward Snowden´s documents, claims there have been a series of raids on his apartment, saying he suspects possible US involvement." [1] In my opinion, there are flaws in his logic. For those unaware of Mr. Applebaum, here is the gist of it: Jacob (ioerror) is a respected security peer, he has worked on Tor, is a member of the Cult of the Dead Cow, and has done some phenomenal security research throughout the years however, his theory of the US being after him may be all wrong.

Jacob is one of a few individuals who is privy to the documents stolen by Edward Snowden. However you choose to view what Snowden did is irrelevant. Fact of the matter is what it is, Snowden stole documents, Jacob received said documents. With that tidbit out of the way, let us put into perspective who would want to target Jacob, and why, as well as, why I don't believe the United States is to blame for the alleged break-in at his flat.

 

 

ENEMIES TARGETING JACOB

  • Every Government Worldwide
  • Every Terrorist Organization Worldwide
  • Corporations Worldwide
  • Black, White, and Grey Hat Hackers Worldwide
  • Organized Criminals Worldwide


Every government in the world, would love to view the documents stolen by Snowden. There is no hocus-pocus to this statement. Even US allies are salivating at the opportunity to see what the United States is doing, has done, how it's doing it. This makes Jacob a prime target for everyone.

Every terrorist organization in the world now knows via news reports that they are under monitor in some capacity. If Jacob thinks for one second, that a terrorist organization would not like to see what is occurring via way of the USA, then he is living in a fantasy land.

Corporations worldwide. There is a lot of money at stake with regards to loss of finance (being outed as working with the NSA), as well as monies to be made by developing capabilities for the United States, and other governments worldwide. If Jacob believes that a corporation does not have the capacity to perform high levels of espionage, he apparently has not heard of companies like XE, Chameleon Associates, Protection Group International, and that list goes on. There are plenty of "for hire" players in this market.

Black, White, and Grey Hat Hackers. None can be trusted, not even the closest friends. This is not to say a friend would deliberately "own" (compromise) Jacob, it is to state fact, not everyone has the "fortitude" to carry the weight of the world on their shoulders. People crack, all the time, and let's face it, money talks. Jacob's friends, are vulnerable, whether they choose to accept, or realize it. There are thousands of hackers who would, and likely are, targeting Jacob.

Organized criminals worldwide also salivate at the chance for a quick payday. This is common sense. If it hasn't been realized, outside of any "moral" position that Jacob can take, the documents in his possession are worth a lot of money. Does this not resonate to Mr. Applebaum and others commenting from the sidelines: "the United States is out to get ioerror!"

Let me postulate why I do not believe the United States is targeting Jacob, and was not responsible for the alleged break-in at his house. "What would the US gain?" The NSA is aware of what documents Jacob has in his possession, this is because they will speculate he has the entire kit and kaboodle. [2,3] Even if Jacob has a dozen documents, the NSA is likely going under the theory that Jacob possesses all 1.7 million documents stolen by Snowden. So what do they gain by targeting Jacob? Deleting those files? What would they gain given the premise there is an "insurance" file [4].

Now Mr. Applebaum stated that "3 out of his 4 security systems" were "touched" and things in his apartment were moved. Let us look at the reality of a tactical break in a quick summary: when tactical teams infiltrate an area, a lot of recon is taken way before hand. There is no reason the NSA or any other US, or related intelligence group wouldn't have poured through Applebaums financials to see what he purchased, when, and so forth. This would put together a dossier of what to expect before entering his flat. "He purchased N amount of cameras, he pays N security company to monitor his home, he purchased N amount of audio recorders" and that list grows. That is pre-entering his flat. Then there comes the pictures once inside the apartment. In order to make sure everything is in place and undisturbed, many photos would be taken to ensure that nothing is out of order on the way out. This is forensics/counter-forensics/intel 101.

With that said, we are to believe that the United States, sloppily broke into his flat, knocked over a cookie jar, didn't clean up the mess, and here they are, caught red-handed just because Jacob says so. Apparently Jacob (if you read this), you are in far over your head. Unless you have been living in a cave, you are public enemy number "top ten" along with Snowden. But it's not by the US government, I believe you have bigger problems you're not even understanding here.

Think about it logically for a moment, it is not in the United States' best interest to break into your flat. They gain little. They cannot delete the documents because they have no idea who has what, otherwise, they'd of done so. They are not out to "get you" on the contrary, I believe it would be in the US' best interest to intercept someone else who MAY be out to get you. I would hate to be in Jacob's shoes right now. I am thinking the pressure of it all is affecting common sense... Just my opinion.


[1] http://www.eturbonews.com/41015/us-government-breaking-apartments-germany
[2] http://www.businessinsider.com/how-many-docs-did-snowden-take-2013-12
[3] https://twitter.com/60Minutes/status/411563084734791680
[4] http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/11/25/us-usa-security-doomsday-idUSBRE9AO0Y120131125