I have reached an interim conclusion in my lobby against the falsehood edicts by publishing organisations in relation to the likely outcome for KOVTR and Tom Koltai.
File sharing is not damaging to the publishing companies.
Digital Distribution appears to be, but only temporarily as they re-jig their business models.
Publishing companies undergoing such a business model transition hired third party company's to protect their reputations on the Internet.
One of these third party company's has attacked and altered the web pages on KOVTR.com to include a virus that attacks browsers installed on Windows systems (only) situate on the computers of persons visiting KOVTR.com.
When I approached officials of the Company on Monday, they vigorously denied all such allegations and asked for information in relation to the hacking incident so that they might investigate whether or not their servers internal security had been breached in some manner.
Which I supplied in good faith, initially believing their claims and protestations of innocence.
In their written response they said;
Firstly I would like to assure you that Envisional does not launch malicious attacks of any nature against websites or computers on the internet. As is clear from our website, we seek out and identify potential infringements to our client’s intellectual property and report them to our clients for them to pursue though the legal process. Our product is designed to access websites as a user or search engine would do and under no circumstances do we participate in or condone any form of malicious action such as you describe.
As a result of your enquiry we have checked and verified that none of the Envisional servers used for delivering our service have been compromised in any way.
We have also checked the log files on the server that you provided an IP address for. Unfortunately the logs do not go back far enough to confirm whether the server visited the site on the date and time specified. We have further examined our results database, which holds a unique record for every URL visited, and I can confirm that we have no record of this server ever having visited your site. We have expanded our search to encompass all of our servers and our only record of visiting your blog site is from a different IP address on 30th April 2010 when we visited the following URLs:
So the logs on some of their servers go back to the 30th of April, but on the sever that I identified, they do not go back to last Friday, the 7th of May…. We think that is most curious.
They then further pointed me to;
We note that your blog is delivered using WordPress. The details that you were prepared to divulge relating to the attack on your site bare a striking resemblance to a new vulnerability that was identified by users of the WordPress product on Friday May 7th, the same day that you claim to have experienced issues with your servers. You may find the following links of interest:
So they could say – in case I had some really good evidence – like for example a Camtasia screen capture of the incursion of the IP number that they said they didn’t have records for (even though it was only last Friday…..)
Accordingly, we can only speculate that your server was probably compromised in a separate incident at an earlier time that left it in a vulnerable state such that any visitor to your site could have triggered the behaviour and circumstances that you have reported.
“such that any visitor to your site could have triggered the behaviour and circumstances that you have reported”
WOW. Extremely sophisticated hacking by the script kiddies….
Not only do script kiddies now delete their footprints and all evidence of their presence but they set a trap so the hack occurs upon the entry of a third party unsuspecting html web browser.
Excuse me !!!! Bulls%$#
In my humble experience, script kiddies usually have a definitive target reason for a hack
1. to use a host for spam attacks for which they are paid per spam email delivered.
2. to use a host as a redirector for click thru fraud.
3. to use the host as a free web server to advertise their own content on [sometimes illegal objectionable content] without paying anyone.
However in almost cases, script kiddies not only don’t bother to delete their entrance and exit, they put up signs that say “KOSOVA was here” or you have been hacked by the Iraqi Confederation for Freedom against Western Oppression”.
None of the above was evident in the KOVTR hack.
An old, relatively harmless (low level of re-infection) virus was injected into each header file ensuring that the site would be marked by the search engines as a Malware site.
Ensuring of course that level headed readers would head the other way.
So what do you call a world where free speech is stifled by officially sanctioned computer hacking that is paid for the some of the largest companies in the world? Exalted Companies like:
Although we had to recover this list of customers from their 2007 list of customers. (Available at: http://web.archive.org/web/20080312152156/http://www.envisional.com/customers/)
Since the 10th of May, (and my verbal advice to them that I had evidence of their hacking activities,) the company has updated their customers page to a more generic:
Financial Services Sector
Envisional’s work in this sector includes anti-fraud intelligence, reputation monitoring, brand awareness, anti-phishing activities and brand protection and enforcement. In a few cases Envisional has even been asked to undertake anti-counterfeit activities on behalf of its Financial Services sector customers.
Oil & Gas
Large oil conglomerates utilise Envisional’s expertise to monitor blogs and forums for current issues and opinions. Envisional also monitors B2C & B2B sites for counterfeit petrochemical products such as lubricants as well as monitoring the internet for compliance with brand guidelines.
Car giants use Envisional to monitor for brand misuse, false claims of association or sponsorship and domain infringements as well as buzz monitoring for environmental policies and to gauge consumer satisfaction. Automotive parts manufacturers also use Envisional to identify and track counterfeit substandard parts.
Envisional provides monitoring and enforcement services to pharmaceutical companies concerned about online counterfeits and diverted products as well as general brand protection services.
The gaming industry typically uses Envisional to monitor compliance of large scale affiliate networks and feedback relating to reputation.
Envisional’s undertakes extensive work in this sector with a large number of software vendors to track down and eliminate pirated product on cyberlockers and torrent portals and illegal downloads in peer-to-peer networks.
Movies studios, record companies and publishers
Envisional’s world class experts are called upon to provide expert opinion, monitoring and investigation services to almost all of the major movies studios, record companies and literary publishers concerned with counterfeit and pirated content
RSA Security, Sony Computer Entertainment, Telefonica, 20th Century Fox, Verisign, Warner Brothers, Yves Rocher, MPAA, Legal & General, NBC Universal Studios, Microsoft, Charities Aid Foundation, EGG, BP Solar, Anglo Irish Bank, Barclays, Champions League.
Notice, not all of these companies may be aware of the full range of activities of companies like Envisional and therefore should not be automatically considered culpable or accessories to the crimes of:
Illegal and unauthorised use of a computer :
Computer Misuse Act 1990 (UK)
1. Unauthorised access to computer material.
2. Unauthorised access with intent to commit or facilitate commission of further offences.
3. Unauthorised modification of computer material.
4. Unauthorised acts with intent to impair, or with recklessness as to impairing, operation of computer, etc.
Criminal Damage Act (UK)
The Anti-Terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001
(and as amended).
Which of course requires ISP’s to maintain such records as are necessary for a an adequate period of time to assist law enforcement agencies to catch the crooks”.
But what happens when the ISP itself is the Crook ?
The World Versus Envisional
So these companies have the benefit of Envisional to protect them from consumers that may be spreading rumours, half-truths or outright lies.
So who protects us (the worlds internet bloggers and tweeters) from Envisional?
Why do we need protection from companies like Envisional?
Because I am satisfied unfortunately, that there is only one way that this story can go for me…
1. I publish evidence showing company is culpable of deliberate injection of Malware into KOVTR.COM web pages.
2. Company either:
a. Commences litigation action to remove said data form the Internet. (At which point in time I shall convert all files to PDF and release onto the P2P networks to ensure their survival.)
b. Inserts further material into the KOVTR,com website of a questionable nature and claims that I am obviously a degenenerate. (Against which I have a file list of filenames and date-stamps.)
c. The company takes down the KOVTR.com website every time I restore it from back-up (twice so far this week).
3. They will ignore me totally and hire mercenary hackers in a foreign area to take out and destroy the KOVTR website and or websites with content from Tom Koltai and or effect 2.(b) above.
Therefore, I shall ignore said company with the exception that I am now removing permission for them to be on the KOVTR.COM website.
And of course, now that they know I am watching, waiting and recording….. the Spetnatz Internet Comandos operating with impunity from within what used to be the centre of the free world’s English centre of cultural heritage, will hire no doubt elect to take option (3) and hire outside contractors to eliminate the problem.
A note to boys and girls in Cambridge.
Gentlemen (and ladies), you may have some of the largest corporations in the world as your clients, but I wont be bullied into submission. You hacked my website and then refused to apologise, instead choosing to threaten me with legal consequences.
Pushback of any kind will beget a multi-threaded, hydra response defence tactic in multiple languages.
When you were hired by the companies, that you defend so well, I am not quite so sure that the brief was “ Keep him busy so that he can’t blog about us…..” at the potential risk to your own business, shareholders and corporate value.
I suggest you take me off your interdiction list.
As far as I am concerned, any hacking attempts on KOVTR.com originate from your offices in Cambridge, regardless of the IP number shown thereon and will be classified as same and declared publicly.
Back-off and we have a workable truce. Continue your destructive incursions and be talked about. In at least six languages.
Delays in implementing a workable hacking legislation in the UK maybe in part due to corporations like NET PLC being employed by international companies to carry out their internet commando activities and the value of the earnings to the UK Government of those hacking operations.
Why did I believe their claims of innocence initially even though I have all this data proving that their IP numbers were involved? That my friends will have to wait for the ensuing trial.
· Home Office pushes tough anti-hacker law (26 January 2006)
· MPs demand big stick for hackers (30 June 2004)
· MPs urged to reform cybercrime laws (30 April 2004)