February 17, 2011

Caught with their hands in the Internet age cookie jar

Andy Greenberg and Glenn Greenwald are reporting on Salon about some alleged cyber misdeeds (or proposed misdeeds) by The US Chamber of Commerce, Bank of America and their law firm, Hunton & Williams. BoA and the USCoC apparently have wadded panties over a Wikileaks threat to dump a pile of unfavorable info, and were looking to launch a smear campaign targeting the perpetrators.

Targets included bloggers, union groups, Internet activists, and the loose knit hacker group, Anonymous. It is that group which turned the tables, releasing some 77,000 email messages hacked from Internet security firm HBGary Federal, implicating involvement by Hunton at the highest levels. The Twitter account of Aaron Barr, HBGary’s CEO, was also hacked, revealing some damning tweets.

The proposed actions against those threatening to expose BoA and USCoC qualify at best as unethical, and in some cases illegal. Hunton and HBGary have serious egg on face and HBGary, at least, is backpedaling as fast as they can. Hunton is yet to make a statement.

This story is unlikely to soon go away. Multiple versions may be found online: News sites are Mother Jones News, the NY Times, WaPo, the LA Times, the Guardian, Daily Finance, and American Lawyer. \

Of course the law blogs are abuzz with the story. See the David Ingram piece at BLT, Brad Wendel’s Legal Ethics Forum, a short note on Overlawyered, Furious George on the Daily KOS, the SAHOS blog nakedsecurity, and Above the Law.



Anonymous said...

Thanks for the links.