Tag Archives: Federal Bureau of Investigation

FBI Agents Hit By Coulrophobia

Fear of clowns (coulrophobia) is no laughing matter, at least not for those unfortunate to suffer from it. But when it comes to the American Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) – spending 14 months, substantial manpower and a small fortune of taxpayers money – to investigate a group of musicians dressing up as clowns, only to find that they are just that, musicians dressing up as clowns, it’s time for therapy.

Insane Clown Posse can’t get its music on the radio, but claims to have 1 million devoted fans who call themselves ‘Juggalos’ or ‘Juggalettes,’ and sometimes paint their faces to look like wicked clowns. “

FBI Agent

juggalol

Never mind the guns, or the drugs, there are things that scare the US law enforcement even more; clown makeup. Newly disclosed documents reveal the genesis of one of the strangest tales involving youth culture, drugs,  law enforcement and clown makeup,  one that prompted a 14-month FBI investigation that ultimately proved to be totally  worthless.

This almost unbelievable story began in 2011 when the FBI for some reason listed s group of music fans calling themself “Juggalos”  in its 2011 report on national gang activity.

images (3)According to the Bureau, the “Juggalos” were more than just goofy kids who sprayed themselves with soda at Insane Clown Posse festivals. In the eye of the FBI, they were a “loosely-organized hybrid gang” that’s “forming more organized subsets and engaging in more gang-like criminal activity.”

For a long time many of the involved musicians and their fans have been wondering how on Earth the experienced investigators at the FBI could come to such a conclusion.

But recently MuckRock, a Massachusetts company that built web tools to help journalists, activists and lawyers file Freedom of Information Act requests, set out to find an answer to the question.

And the records show that the whole thing was triggered by the arrest of two Juggalos by Utah local police for possession of drug in March 2011,  then leading an obviously coulrophobic FBI agent in Salt Lake City to open a sprawling investigation into “the structure, scope and relationships pertaining to the captioned violent street gang.”

FULL POST@Rational Arrogance

 

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Filed under Laws and Regulations, Technology

US Federal Reserve: Hacked, Tapped and Smacked

Last Sunday’s cyber attack on US Federal Reserve Bank of St.Louis appears to be a lot more serious than the St.Louis FED have told the media, the authorities  and  financial institutions they serve. According to ZDNet the hacktivist group Anonymous may have released important banking information that could be connected to Federal Reserve computers, including contact information and cell phone numbers for U.S. bank Presidents, Vice Presidents, COO’s Branch Managers, VP’s and more. The FBI has now opened a criminal investigation into  hacking incident.

“As an information security expert, its my official position that there was a blatant and irresponsible lack of tact and urgency in the response by the Federal Reserve to the individuals and institutions contained in this list. I’d go as far as to say they have irrevocably LIED to their constituents here.”

Security Expert

anonymous-fed-hack

According to the ZDNet report, the information security community is outraged at the Federal Reserve for its dismissive attitude and lack of transparency around Sunday’s emergency contact system hack. A Federal Reserve Spokesperson told reporters that Anonymous’ claim to the hack’s importance was “overstated,” but information security professionals that serve financial institutions says the exact opposite. Now they are angry with the Federal Reserve for downplaying the incident – very angry.

The hacktivist group Anonymous accessed  the US Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis‘ internal files and servers, by hacking the FED’s  emergency contact system,  ZDNet reports.

anon 0The emergency contact system (ECS) enables agencies to establish two-way communications channels with institutions during a crisis to exchange critical information; crises such as natural or man-made disasters; weather, fire, and so on, chemical biological events or threats, and events affecting the financial markets

One of the people who express his concern with the hacking incident is Veracode chief technology officer, Chris Wysopal, calling the hack “a spearphishing bonanza and the most valuable account dump by quality I have seen in a while.”

anon 1Another person expressing concern on the incident is Jon Waldman, a senior information security consultant whose firm specializes in serving small-to-medium sized financial institutions, explain his anger at The FED’s downplaying of the incident.

Here are some quotes by the security excerpts:

“The Federal Reserve is simply incorrect by saying there’s not account details on the list. I’ve seen that list and it is absolutely rife with account details. Usernames and hashed passwords are included with salts.”

“As an information security expert, its my official position that there was a blatant and irresponsible lack of tact and urgency in the response by the Federal Reserve to the individuals and institutions contained in this list. I’d go as far as to say they have irrevocably LIED to their constituents here.”

Hacking for…….Chris Dorner!?

ZDNet points out that the Anonymous previously hacked other US government websites, including the U.S. Sentencing Commission and the Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center. The report also claim that Anonymous new attack’s filename refers to Christopher Dorner, an ex-LAPD officer that is currently the target of a California state-wide manhunt for killing three people, but has been characterized by some Anons as “an avatar” of the man of conscience pushed to the point of desperate action due to the alleged corruption happening within the LAPD.

anon 2However, the latest government hacking incident may also be attributed to a group of Anonymous’ demand for a US computer crime reform law, as well as the group’s extended show-off in protest for the early demise of Reddit’s co-founder Aaron Swartz, a famous hacktivist who committed suicide during a rough investigation by the FBI into his activities.

I certainly hope that no one commits suicide as a result of this new FBI investigation, but I curious about the results. And also if the investigation will target the officials at St.Louis FED – or just the Anonymous…

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Filed under Laws and Regulations, National Economic Politics, Technology

All Facebook Users Are Now Potential Terrorists

At least that’s the opinion of American and British authorities. While the US FBI are hunting down script kiddies who’s messing with their websites, the British police are cracking down on users of social media for allegedly encouraging a mass uprising during a time ripe with riots.

One single message on Facebook recently resulted in four years behind bars for two British citizens because of something they say was just a drunk joke.

Now human rights groups are sounding the alarm, saying the courts are over-reacting by dishing out penalties which are far too harsh.

Russia Today reports:

As if that’s not enough; we now also got a Facebook group dedicated to expose terrorist on Facebook….or should I say “Farcebook”?…

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