Say That Again

by Mike Masnick


Filed Under:
dnc, malware

Companies:
wikileaks



Democratic National Committee Claims That Wikileaks Has 'Malware Embedded Throughout The Site'

from the say-what-now? dept

We've long been supporters of the concept of Wikileaks around here, though we've had some concerns about some of the decisions it has made. Generally speaking, though, we find the accusations and conspiracy theories around Wikileaks to be somewhat ridiculous. The latest comes buried in a Politico article about the massive amount of dysfunction within the Democratic National Committee. Apparently since Wikileaks released a bunch of DNC emails, leading to chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz stepping down, it has freed up a bunch of people to bitch and whine about her (lack of) leadership and what a mess the whole DNC has been recently.

But, buried deep within that article is this wacky tidbit:
Staff members were briefed in a Tuesday afternoon meeting in Washington that their personal data was part of the hack, as were Social Security numbers and other information for donors, according to people who attended. Don’t search WikiLeaks, they were told — malware is embedded throughout the site, and they’re looking for more data.
We've seen various organizations impacted by Wikileaks come up with all sorts of excuses and claims about why people shouldn't use the site, but "the site is embedded with malware" is a new one. It also seems hellishly unlikely. It's the kind of thing that someone would discover and it would destroy whatever credibility Wikileaks has left. I guess anything is possible, but this sounds like the DNC freaking out over the leaks and trying to spread bogus rumors in the hopes that it will get people to stop looking at their leaked files.

Reader Comments

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  • identicon
    UniKyrn, 29 Jul 2016 @ 10:56am

    And being the upstanding citizens they are, with safety in mind, the immediate notified WikiLeaks about the problem, right?

    After they tried to hide the fact they'd put it there ...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 29 Jul 2016 @ 10:57am

    Nothing to see here, trust us, move along now.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Uriel-238 (profile), 29 Jul 2016 @ 10:57am

    Wait, that's not news.

    If Forbes can get away with demanding users turn off their adblockers and then hosting malware-loaded adverts, why shouldn't the rest of the internet be held to the same standard.

    That level of malware is background noise.

    How can they tell us to _nerd harder_ when they can't nerd at all?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 29 Jul 2016 @ 10:59am

    the DNC is filled with a bunch of knownothings that lack the prescience to understand that they should probably hire better professionals.

    Its bad enough that the FBI notified them of the potential hack months before they finally took action, now they're spreading some outright falsehoods to prevent their staff from reviewing the data.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 29 Jul 2016 @ 12:43pm

      Re:

      "the DNC is filled with a bunch of knownothings that lack the prescience to understand that they should probably hire better professionals"

      It's very possibly true that they don't know what they don't know.

      "Its bad enough that the FBI notified them of the potential hack months before they finally took action,"

      I seem to recall both DNC and RNC were hacked in the run up to the 2008 election. I'm of the opinion that there is a high probability the RNC was also hacked this time around. If a state, or someone working on behalf of a state, wants to damage the perception of one side they'll probably want to blackmail the other at some point ("see what we did to them, now what else do you think we have?")

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 Aug 2016 @ 8:04am

      Re:

      now they're spreading some outright falsehoods

      Isn't this par for the course for anything the DNC says?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 29 Jul 2016 @ 11:01am

    Don't read it. It's against the laws of whatever we say it is. Also, don't let others read it. It makes us look bad, I mean it's illegal.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    mcinsand, 29 Jul 2016 @ 11:05am

    translation

    Apparently, 'malware' is a new term for inconvenient truths.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 29 Jul 2016 @ 11:41am

      Re: translation

      Apparently, 'malware' is a new term for inconvenient truths.

      ooooohhhhhh! A new movie for Al Gore to make. :)

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 29 Jul 2016 @ 11:05am

    Don’t search WikiLeaks, they were told — malware is embedded throughout the site, and they’re looking for more data.

    Does that mean that an insider would have the missing piece to discover a good scandal if they searched the emails?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 29 Jul 2016 @ 11:08am

    "... leading to chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz stepping down"


    She did not step down, she stepped UP!!!

    And regarding "trying to spread bogus rumors." This is hardly the first time. Claiming that the emails were a result of a state-sponsored Russian hack job seems like another wild accusation, because either they have a smoking gun trail to the FSB, or they're just blowing smoke. (that's assuming a government even needs to hack servers to acquire email, since emails are sent across the globe in unencrypted text and can be harvested and read by anyone along the way.)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 29 Jul 2016 @ 1:59pm

      Re:

      The new position she was given in the Hillary campaign is a meaningless irrelevant vanity position, so no, she did not step up.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Jeremy2020 (profile), 29 Jul 2016 @ 3:19pm

        Re: Re:

        He may have meant that she stepped up to DNC Chair when the former DNC chair, Tim Kaine(Where have I heard that name recently?), stepped down and recommended her for the position.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Jeremy2020 (profile), 29 Jul 2016 @ 3:20pm

      Re:

      Why can't the nerds nerd harder and make this about Russia?!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 29 Jul 2016 @ 8:51pm

        Nerding harder

        It might be with all the magic unicorn key rhetoric about backdooring crypto, both parties have scared away all the nerds.

        Especially any nerds that are capable of hard nerding.

        We don't like being taken for granted.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ninja (profile), 29 Jul 2016 @ 11:08am

    I think it depends on what they put in their pages. It's easy to imagine some ad network delivering malware there specially when major networks and payment processors actively block wikleaks from using them. Because the US says so.

    Still, it smells like made up stuff to scare people away from the site and deviate the focus from their misdeeds.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    David, 29 Jul 2016 @ 11:33am

    If they hacked the DNC

    Imagine how easy it would be to hack someones home server in their basement. Especially one mis-configured to the point other people would have to disable anti-spam/virus protections in order to receive mail from it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 29 Jul 2016 @ 11:38am

    You see there's a simple explanation to all of this really and it's basically WHAT THE HELL IS THAT!?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    SpaceLifeForm, 29 Jul 2016 @ 11:45am

    Website does not have to be serving the malware

    It can be injected on the fly.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Padpaw (profile), 29 Jul 2016 @ 11:52am

    never take responsibility, always blame anyone and everyone you can think of, when all else fails lie, lie, lie.

    I am talking about both parties here not just 1

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 29 Jul 2016 @ 12:02pm

    The Trickle Down

    Soon to be former chief technologist for the DNC proudly lists his most recent employment on the application. The Mc Donalds manager laughs and says "you want to run the cash register?"

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    darkhorseman (profile), 29 Jul 2016 @ 1:50pm

    Malware? Where?

    Seriously where is this malware on the site as someone who does malware analysis I would like to know. I haven't check all the attachments in the DNC emails to see if there is malware in them. If that was the case I want to know why the DNC was not checking their attachments.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 29 Jul 2016 @ 1:56pm

    New way to distribute malware...

    The DNC may know about this malware, because they may have put it there *purposely*.

    Leak the malware as part of an email trove from someone or some organization that is famous.

    Hide the malware in email in *html + javascript* format, for example. Or hidden in .pdf, .docx, etc. attachments.

    When Wikileaks publishes the trove, the malware gets distributed to everyone who tries to read it.

    It's going to take a lot of work for Wikileaks to prove that there's no malware embedded in *any* of the emails.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    JoeCool (profile), 29 Jul 2016 @ 2:17pm

    They would know

    They know that wikileaks has malware because they have the DNC's emails, which were chock-full of malware. Why, almost half the DNC folk can't boot their computers anymore for all the malware they had, and now that's all at wikileaks.
    ;)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Brandon, 29 Jul 2016 @ 4:42pm

    Not that unlikely

    https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12146920

    I don't have any particular insight into why Google listed them originally, but if you dump a huge trove of email anywhere, there's a good chance it contains some virus files, if the original receivers didn't have great av protection.

    The site report still says there are specific bad pages, but the overall site isn't listed anymore.

    No conspiracy necessary.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 30 Jul 2016 @ 12:08am

    They try and elect people to a government that tells workers that even if the information is widely available to the public it is still secret & they can face charges.

    They have the worst infosec practices, despite paying way to much money for the best of the best. When security by obscurity fails them, they invent boogeymen to scare people from looking for themselves... (seems to be a common policy of governments).

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 30 Jul 2016 @ 1:47am

      Re:

      despite paying way to much money for the best of the best.

      that would be:-
      The best of the best of people who inflate their salary way beyond what their actual abilities justify..

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 30 Jul 2016 @ 12:52am

    They're just trying to scare their lame brained, sycophantic drones from visiting the site.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Whatever, 30 Jul 2016 @ 1:04am

    Of course Wikileaks has malware embedded throughout the site. I hate Assange and I think he's an asshole, that proves Wikileaks is a rogue site.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Zem, 30 Jul 2016 @ 2:56am

    The X Files almost got it right.

    The Truth Is Malware

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Tejat, 30 Jul 2016 @ 4:48am

    Wikileaks is spreading dangerous truths.

    Sounds like malware alright.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    James Buchanan, 30 Jul 2016 @ 5:29am

    The?

    With every government checking Wikipedia, I would not doubt there is malware in every script there. But, that being said. Where are the emails from the rnc? Why was it not illegal for them to use another server? The law was changed after? Uh? No the rules were in place after tricky dickies three missing minutes. Archive rules of open government for preserving government records.
    But don't let a little sexist hate, override your political Bernie love.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 30 Jul 2016 @ 8:14am

    Apparently the malware wrote the missing 30,000 emails that Hillary won't turn over.

    Also it infiltrated her brain to make her order her PA to destroy those emails.

    Also the malware paid the feds tens of thousands of dollars to put shitty 'investigators' onto the case, who were ordered from day one to find nothing and no-one responsible.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    mike_m (profile), 31 Jul 2016 @ 4:32am

    You can take them at their word

    They are the DNC's top security experts.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Aug 2016 @ 4:34pm

    Democratic National Committee sounds just like the MAFIAA: "Don't visit piracy websites, they contain malware!"

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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