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Archive for October 5th, 2009

FBI Probing Whether Tex Gov’s Campaign Website Was Hacked

Tex. Gov. Rick Perry/official photo

Tex. Gov. Rick Perry/official photo

To be honest, as dirty as politics is, I’m surprised there hasn’t been more of this type of activity.

By JAY ROOT
Associated Press

The FBI confirmed Monday it is investigating whether hackers disrupted a live webcast on Gov. Rick Perry’s campaign Web site last week during a re-election announcement.

“The FBI confirms that it is conducting a preliminary inquiry into the possibility that an intentional intrusion was conducted on the governor’s computer from out of state,” said Erik Vasys, a spokesman for the FBI in San Antonio. “The FBI considers this a hacking event with unknown origin at this time.”

The webcast was to have been streamed from a closed event at the San Antonio headquarters of Holt Caterpillar last Tuesday.

For Full Story

Like Plot out of “24”, FBI Agent Says Suspected Teen Terrorist Made Video and Researched Detonating Bomb With Cell Phone

dallas-map1By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Down in Dallas, the story behind the Jordanian teenager who wanted to blow up a skyscraper is beginning to sound more and more like a plot out of the popular Fox Tv show “24”.

The Dallas Morning News reports that an FBI agent testified that the teen had researched how to detonate a bomb with a cell phone and made a 7-minute video, which he thought would end up in the hands of Osama bin Laden.

To read more about this wild plot, click here.

Big 3 in Law Enforcement Send Message to Police Chief Convention in Denver: “We’ve Got Your Back”

police-chief-logo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com
DENVER— The Big Three of Federal Law Enforcement — Attorney Gen. Eric Holder, FBI Dir. Robert Mueller III and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano– rolled into this western town and delivered speeches Monday morning to a roomful of receptive police chiefs who gave them standing ovations.

There wasn’t anything particularly breathtaking or moving about the speeches. But there was a message the Washington honchos  wanted to send, and perhaps Atty.  Gen. Holder summed it up it best when he told the group at the 116th Annual International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference: “We’ve got your back.”

FBI Dir. Mueller echoed similar sentiments while serving up some self-deprecating humor about the himself as well as the FBI and its image as being hogs of the limelight.

He said he hoped he’d had some success over the years addressing that issue on the limelight. (Though truth be told, there are still plenty complaints from other agencies like ATF and DEA that the FBI doesn’t always want to share the ball, so to speak, during the game.)

And he said of cooperation:

“Regardless of the threat, whether criminal or terrorist, we face the same challenges you do. We need to know where any given threat is moving, and we need to get there first.”

Read more »

Terrorist Nearing Ability to Launch Major Cyberattacks in U.S.

More often than not, when we think of terrorist attacks we think of bombings and biological threats. But cyber attacks are no laughing matter. They could shut down commerce and create major chaos.

computer1
By Jill R. Aitoro
nextgov

The biggest threat to U.S. computer networks is terrorist organizations that will purchase software code from cybercriminals to penetrate sensitive systems, a possibility that could be just a few years away, information security and former intelligence officials said on Friday.

Although enemy states often are blamed for cyberattacks against the United States, it is not common because political and financial repercussions dissuade most countries from launching a widespread effort, James Woolsey, a former CIA director, said during a panel discussion at the International Spy Museum. The talk was part of the launch of a new gallery on cyber threats.

For Full Story

Police Chiefs Convention Adopts Community Watch Program for Terrorism

It’s good to use people in the community to help look for suspicious activities. But this, as agencies like the FBI have learned in the Post 9/11 era, can create an endless stream of worthless tips. Too much encouragement may create endless busy work. FBI Director Robert Mueller III is scheduled to speak at the conference later today.  It will be interesting to see if he addresses this particular issue.police-chief-logo

By EILEEN SULLIVAN and P. SOLOMON BANDA
Associated Press
DENVER — A store clerk’s curiosity about why Najibullah Zazi was buying large quantities of beauty supply products indicated that something about the transaction wasn’t quite right – and it’s an example of the kind of citizen vigilance that can combat terror, a police commander said Saturday.

Los Angeles police Cmdr. Joan McNamara cited this summer’s incident as police chiefs meeting in Denver adopted a model for a nationwide community watch program that teaches people what behavior is truly suspicious and encourages them to report it to police.

For Full Story

Terrorism Probes Test FBI-Muslim Relations

This endless tightrope act will continue so long as these types of investigations pop up. And so far there’s no sign of these probes vanishing any time soon. The FBI is going to have to work hard on it’s relations with the Muslim community, something it has tried to work on in the post-9/11 era, and not always with success.

mosque

By Carrie Johnson and Robin Shulman
Washington Post Staff Writers
WASHINGTON — Investigators seeking to uncover terrorist plots for years have walked a fine line between keeping tabs on the Muslim community and alienating the same people who could serve as an early warning signal.

That tenuous balance has been tested again in what law enforcement authorities say is one of the most worrisome terrorism investigations in decades, the unfolding case against Denver shuttle bus driver Najibullah Zazi, who has been charged with conspiracy to unleash weapons of mass destruction in the form of hydrogen peroxide bombs.

For Full Story