Especially worthy of notice today.
- Glenn Greenwald charged with hacking offenses in Brazil.
- Law enforcement looks to data extraction technology as an alternative to back doors.
- A DDoS protection firm was really a DDoS-for-hire racket.
- Chinese universities come under US investigation for technology theft.
- Someone's hiring demonstrators to support Huawei's CFO during her extradition hearing.
Brazil charges Greenwald with hacking.
Brazilian federal prosecutors yesterday unsealed charges against Glenn Greenwald, co-founder of the Intercept and best known for publishing Edward Snowden's leaks. The New York Times reports that Mr. Greenwald's role in publishing cell phone messages that embarrassed prosecutors and an anti-corruption task force is at issue. Prosecutors say that he played a “clear role in facilitating the commission of a crime” by being in contact with people who obtained the messages and recommending that they cover their tracks. Greenwald himself brackets his case with Julian Assange's, and claims both indictments represent an attack on journalism. Few others see it this way: Mr. Assange is generally regarded as having worked actively to facilitate hacking, whereas Greenwald merely advised sources on how to remain anonymous. The Electronic Frontier Foundation, the ACLU, and other observers promptly tweeted objections to the charges, which they see as a threat to legitimate journalism.
Cryptowars, local front.
The highest profile US source of pressure on Apple and other tech companies to provide authorities with assistance in breaking encrypted devices has been the Justice Department, and in particular the FBI. That debate has largely taken the form of whether backdoors should be built in that would enable encryption to be broken at need. But other organizations have invested heavily in data-extraction technology for law enforcement that doesn't require backdoors. The Manhattan District Attorney, for one, has invested heavily in research directed toward developing ways of getting data from seized iPhones, Fast Company reports. And a former Hong Kong police detective tells the South China Morning Post that authorities in the quasi-autonomous city have purchased Cellebrite tools as a way of keeping tabs on protesters' activities.
Not a legitimate business after all.
Tucker Preston of Macon, Georgia, copped a guilty plea in the US District Court for the District of New Jersey. He acknowledged that he "knowingly caused the transmission of a program, information, code, and command, and as a result of such conduct, intentionally caused damage without authorization to protected computers of Victim 1, and caused loss to 1 or more persons during a 1-year period affecting protected computers aggregating at least $5,ooo in value." He faces a maximum of 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000, KrebsOnSecurity reports. Mr. Preston will be sentenced on May 7th.
Influence operations, high-end and low-end.
The US Departments of Justice and State are subjecting Chinese universities to closer scrutiny. Many of them are suspected of complicity in intellectual property theft, the Wall Street Journal reports.
A British Columbia woman says she's embarrassed to have appeared in news photos holding up a sign supporting Meng Wanzhou outside the Vancouver courthouse where the Huawei CFO is fighting extradition to the US. News 1130 says that the unnamed woman got a call from a friend who asked her if she'd like to make a quick $150, and the woman agreed. It seemed like a good idea at the time, but maybe she didn't really read the sign or think about the cause she was supporting. Still, a hundred-fifty bucks...seemed legit...