In the United Kingdom a group of hackers found that a twitter account allegedly belonging to ISIS where they boasted of their misdeeds , tracked the originating IP address to a number assigned to BritisH Government offices in the City of London.
The Government responded by claiming they sold a batch of IP addresses to the Saudi's and this was one of them.
In reaction to the revelations of the back door in Juniper hardware , the US immediately blamed hackers in a China and Russia.
A number of countries including Brazil, Germany , China and Russia are blocking use of US manufactured hardware because they claim they not secure as the NSA has back doors into such.
The FBI insists such back doors be put in all technologies,
I find it highly unlikely that this due to hackers from Russia. Just as the British point elsewhere so as to cover their own backsides over those ISIS twitter accounts, the US Government uses the same tactics to deflect blame from the NSA.
Maybe if they focussed on "keeping us safe" instead of spying on us ..
I am glad to see the attention given this.
With and since Snowden's revelations, enough information has become public to draw some conclusions about this sort of thing.
First, we know that the NSA and presumably assorted other agencies have placed back doors in operating systems and hardware, with little respect for law.
Second, we know that NSA and other agencies, particularly the CIA, regularly make sweetheart deals with other agencies within the US, intelligence agencies and parties of various sorts in other countries, and organized crime.
(Anyone skeptical of this latter should review reporting of the history of the drug trade out of Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War, the Iran-Contra affair in the 1980's, the opium trade out of Afghanistan since the American invasion, and Seymour Hersh's recent reporting of intelligence sharing around the destruction of Syria).
The information flow looks a bit like this:
individual --> agency --> business, call it mafia or no.
The motive is pretty simple. Agents claiming to be part of the government are regarded by much of the populace to be entitled to break all sorts of rules. They are accorded status and trust that they have not earned. It's a bit like going up to someone's door in a suit and flashing a badge. Partly, government is able to do this because there are restrictions on the ability of the government workers to profit from the information.
That's why it goes from the government to other governments and businesses. Through the miracle of privatization, they can use it in more predatory and aggressive ways with less fear that the pretense of legitimacy that allows the information to be stolen shall be compromised.
To make it easier to follow, let's trace a gift of arms rather than information. Barack Obama gives the PRI government of Mexico arms "to fight drugs."
Of course, the guns wind up in the hands of a local narcotrafficker. In Mexico, there are multiple drug dealing cartels fighting for turf, so they are indeed "fighting drugs" in that sense, though not as most Americans might imagine upon hearing the phrase. However, some entity with access to the US executive has made some sort of a deal with one or another party that has access to the Mexican executive.
Of course there is little press Stateside, and much assumption that the fault is with that corrupt Mexican government, just as though the US with all its agencies and spies knew less about that system than a Mexican schoolboy, and might have imagined that its guns were used "for good."
Consider the risks to the PR of Obama and the Democrats in this delivery of arms. and ask yourself what is the corresponding risk from information sales for people at various bureaucratic levels and in different sorts of businesses within the basic snarls of conspiracy that surround information farming. There are protocols and protocols, of course, and most people do not understand most of what they are handling, let alone what other hands have been on it. Let's face it, if you are harvesting ramps, you can't take more than a small percentage on a given trip, or they will not be there again when you come back. And in this case, some of the ramps bite.
Your business been hacked? Yes!--your business, your bank, your government, your PC, your phone, and your car if it was made in the last decade or two, somewhere in there (and no, I do not know the year). If you have not felt the burn, no one has bothered to harvest, or you were not aware how it happened.
Now, how long might you wait where you are before someone decides that you are ripe?