File Sharing and National Security

This little security breach and its cause are disturbing (italics mine):

A Cranberry company that monitors peer-to-peer file-sharing networks discovered a potentially serious security breach involving President Barack Obama’s helicopter.
Tiversa employees found engineering and communications information about Marine One at an IP address in Tehran, Iran.
“We found a file containing entire blueprints and avionics package for Marine One, which is the president’s helicopter,” said Bob Boback, CEO of Tiversa.
The company told Target 11 that it was able to trace the file back to its original source.
“What appears to be a defense contractor in Bethesda, Md., had a file sharing program on one of their systems that also contained highly sensitive blueprints for Marine One,” Boback said.
Tiversa also found sensitive financial information about the cost of the helicopter on that same computer.
Boback said someone from the company most likely downloaded a file-sharing program, typically used to exchange music, not realizing the potential problems.
“When downloading one of these file-sharing programs, you are effectively allowing others around the world to access your hard drive,” Boback said.

“We found where this information came from,” said Retired Gen. Wesley Clark, an adviser to Tiversa. “We know exactly what computer it came from. I’m sure that person is embarrassed and may even lose their job, but we know where it came from and we know where it went.”

I think a lot of people, even those who regularly use computers and the internetz, really don’t know how they work….

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6 Responses to File Sharing and National Security

  1. Tony P says:

    There was a file sharing case on and I commented on it.
    I’ve never heard of I.T. pro’s, particularly systems and security types being snared in the RIAA round up. Why? Because all of us know how to shut off file sharing in things like Limewire, etc. If you don’t share out, they can NEVER find you.

  2. davem says:

    to see the open letter to Richard Dawkins
    and how we won the million dollar paranormal challenge…

  3. A says:

    It is certainly disturbing that some defense contractor was negligent enough to allow such files on non-secure computers.
    This event is also great advertisement for the company Tiversa, which found this file. Apparently now also some insurance company are among their customers, presumably searching for privacy breaches on their patients’ and doctors’ information. I wonder if they also search for their customers’ medical information to establish pre-existing conditions or other reasons for uninsurability?
    So, better not put the letter saying that you have a gene for breast cancer on the same drive as the one you share with P2P!

  4. jorge says:

    Posted by: davem | March 9, 2009 12:35 AM
    Mission Troll Dennis Markuze – Most blogs just block the insane such as davem/dennis markuze. PZ finally got you stamped out of his blogs, now Mike the Mad Biologist will need to call the fumigators to get rid of you from his blogs.

  5. Captain Obvious says:

    I’d put good money on the poor guy losing his job and taking the whole blame for this.
    He does certainly have a share of that blame but files like that shouldn’t even be on a network connected to the internetz in the first place and from the sounds of what little there is to go on “he” didn’t put them they deliberately. So a fair amount of the reponsibility needs to be shouldered by the appropriate management types as well – not that it will be.

  6. Eamon says:

    There’s a big problem over here in Japan with a file sharing programme called ‘Winny’. Every few months there’s another Defense Force or Police computer spilling its guts on the net, courtesy of Winny.

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