Yes, if you looked closely on Twitter there WAS something more interesting than the Oscars going on tonight. Well, photosynthesis is more interesting, but you know what I mean.
Anonymous and Wikileaks combined forces to leak over five million emails from “private CIA” company Stratfor. Anonymous has gone up against Stratfor before, but by routing the dox through Wikileaks they leverage a chain of media relationships and thus publicity that Anon alone could never reach. Said it before and I will, in fact, say it again: Wikileaks is a PR agency for documents. Wikileaks had a vested interest in this leak because over 4000 of the emails mention Julian Assange or Wikileaks.
Just when everyone thought they had become; a) irrelevant and b) preoccupied, Wikileaks comes out with a fatal stroke that, because of its more than 25 international media partnerships, is as instantly ubiquitous as it is effective.
On Monday February 27th, 2012, WikiLeaks began publishing The Global Intelligence Files, over five million e-mails from the Texas headquartered “global intelligence” company Stratfor. The e-mails date between July 2004 and late December 2011. They reveal the inner workings of a company that fronts as an intelligence publisher, but provides confidential intelligence services to large corporations, such as Bhopal’s Dow Chemical Co., Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon and government agencies, including the US Department of Homeland Security, the US Marines and the US Defence Intelligence Agency. The emails show Stratfor’s web of informers, pay-off structure, payment laundering techniques and psychological methods.
Did I say “fatal?” I sure as hell did. Take a gander at this document, a mere two hours old.
Date: 2012-02-26 19:02:07
It is with great personal disappointment I have to inform you that I will resign from my position as CEO for Stratfor to immediate effect.
Please rest assured that this decision was not an easy. But in the light of the recent events, especially the release of our company emails by WikiLeaks, I have decided that stepping down is in the best interest of Stratfor and its customer base.
I want to emphasize that this will have no effect on Stratfor’s business or its members and we will continue to provide state-of-the-art intelligence services.
Regarding the latest breach, Stratfor is fully in control of the situation However, while I cannot take any personal responsibility for this incident, I still have to admit that mistakes have been made on our side. To be clear: We certainly do not condone any criminal activities by groups like Anonymous or other hackers. This is theft and we will continue to cooperate with law enforcement to bring those responsible to justice. But we must acknowledge that this incident would not have been possible if Stratfor had implemented stronger data protection mechanisms – which will be the case from now on. Indeed we will immediately move to implement the latest, and most comprehensive, data security measures.
While I played no role in our technical operations, as the company’s CEO I do accept full responsibility thus will resign from my position effective immediately.
Again, my sincerest apologies for this whole unfortunate incident.
Yes, George Friedman, former CEO of Stratfor, is officially Fried, if not Fired. That’s a neat trick, saying you can’t take any personal responsibility but that you do accept full responsibility; not to mention claiming to be fully in control of a situation where five million of your security company’s “secure” emails, many of them mortifying, have been released.
Mortifying? How about institutionalized bigotry and opportunistic, malevolent greed for starters, not to mention this high-level security company being shown up, repeatedly, on the security front. There are five million more emails to sift through, and a press conference coming up in a few hours. Who knows what lulz may come?