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Archive for March 18th, 2015

Border Patrol Agent Accuses Homeland Security of Manipulating Statistics

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Border Patrol agent told a Senate committee Tuesday that Homeland Security is fudging border statistics to make the border seem safer than it actually is, The Business Insider reports.

“I want to be crystal clear – the border is not secure,” said border agent Chris Cabrera in prepared testimony before the Senate Homeland Security Committee on Tuesday.

“That is not just my opinion or the position of the NBPC,” he said, speaking on behalf of the National Border Patrol Council. “Ask any line agent in the field and he or she will tell you that at best we apprehend 35 to 40 percent of the illegal immigrants attempting to cross. This number is even lower for drug smugglers who are much more adept at eluding capture.”

Cabrera said the number of footprints from immigrants, for example, are severely undercounted and that supervisors create incentives for agents to lie.

“Agents who repeatedly report groups larger than 20 face retribution,” he said. “Management will either take them out of the field and assign them to processing detainees at the station or assign them to a fixed position in low volume areas as punishment.”

“Needless to say agents got the message and now stay below this 20 person threshold no matter the actual size of the group,” he added.

FBI Investigating Massive Cyberattack on Premera Health Insurance Company

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is investigating a large cyberattack on the Premera health insurance company after concerns that personal and financial information of nearly 11 million customers has been compromised, ABC News reports.

Premera said there’s no evidence yet that data was used “inappropriately.”

The company discovered the “sophisticated attack” nearly seven weeks ago and quickly learned that the hacking began in May 2014. The FBI was immediately notified, the company and bureau said.

“Cybercrime remains a significant threat and the FBI will continue to devote substantial resources and efforts to bringing cyber criminals to justice,” FBI spokesman Joshua Campbell said in a statement.

Premera is beginning to warning customers of the breach.

“[T]he attackers may have gained unauthorized access to members’ information, which could include members’ name, date of birth, Social Security number, mailing address, email address, telephone number, member identification number, bank account information, and claims information, including clinical information,” Premera said in its statement. “Individuals who do business with Premera and provided the company with their email address, personal bank account number, or Social Security number are also affected.”

Letter Addressed to White House Headed to Third Round of Testing for Cyanide

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

 Did an envelope addressed to the White House contain cyanide?

It’s going to take a third round of testing after the initial biological testing came back negative but a follow-up test found a “presumptive positive” for the deadly poison, the Secret Service said.

The New York Times reports that the letter was found in an off-site facility where White House mail is screened. 

The Secret Service declined to further discuss the issue.

In early 2013, a Mississippi man sent a ricin-laced letter to President Obama, Sen. Roger Wicker and Mississippi judge Sadie Holland. He was sentenced to 25 years in prison, The Times wrote.