Snowden: What The Wikileaks Revelations Show Is "Reckless Beyond Words"

Tyler Durden's picture

While it has been superficially covered by much of the press - and one can make the argument that what Julian Assange has revealed is more relevant to the US population, than constant and so far unconfirmed speculation that Trump is a puppet of Putin - the fallout from the Wikileaks' "Vault 7" release this morning of thousands of documents demonstrating the extent to which the CIA uses backdoors to hack smartphones, computer operating systems, messenger applications and internet-connected televisions, will be profound.

As evidence of this, the WSJ cites an intelligence source who said that "the revelations were far more significant than the leaks of Edward Snowden."

Mr. Snowden’s leaks revealed names of programs, companies that assist the NSA in surveillance and in some cases the targets of American spying. But the recent leak purports to contain highly technical details about how surveillance is carried out. That would make them far more revealing and useful to an adversary, this person said. In one sense, Mr. Snowden provided a briefing book on U.S. surveillance, but the CIA leaks could provide the blueprints.

Speaking of Snowden, the former NSA contractor-turned-whistleblower, who now appears to have a "parallel whisteblower" deep inside the "Deep State", i.e., the source of the Wikileaks data - also had some thoughts on today's CIA dump.

In a series of tweets, Snowden notes that "what @Wikileaks has here is genuinely a big deal", and makes the following key observations "If you're writing about the CIA/@Wikileaks story, here's the big deal: first public evidence USG secretly paying to keep US software unsafe" and adds that "the CIA reports show the USG developing vulnerabilities in US products, then intentionally keeping the holes open. Reckless beyond words."

He then asks rhetorically "Why is this dangerous?" and explains "Because until closed, any hacker can use the security hole the CIA left open to break into any iPhone in the world."

His conclusion, one which many of the so-called conspiratorial bent would say was well-known long ago: "Evidence mounts showing CIA & FBI knew about catastrophic weaknesses in the most-used smartphones in America, but kept them open -- to spy."

To which the increasingly prevalent response has become: "obviously."

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PoasterToaster's picture
PoasterToaster (not verified) Mar 7, 2017 2:31 PM

Trump must clear Snowden's name and end the siege on Assange.

Looney's picture


The “Pandora’s Box” cliché doesn’t quite fit the use of Cyber Weapons, but another metaphor does – “Pinocchio’s Screw”.

When Pinocchio discovered a screw inside of his belly button, he grabbed a screwdriver and… two seconds later, his ass fell off.  ;-)


SilverRhino's picture

Time to shut the CIA down and CLEAN FUCKING HOUSE

nuubee's picture

The CIA Dindu Nuffin wrong, just hacked us all.

froze25's picture

So the CIA was doing the NSA's job, dropped the ball and let the weapons out to the world. I wonder if they were using these "tools" domestically outside of their mandate? As an agency you couldn't be more incompetent. Does anyone understand how much security they (CIA) have just compromised? This is so serous it's insane.

WordSmith2013's picture


"It doesn’t get any bigger than Vault 7!"


Vault 7 Opened Up: The Biggest Megillah of Them All
froze25's picture

Now that we know the names of the tools "FOIA" request can be made regarding "all instances of XYZ (tool)" being used.

CPL's picture

Why do you think the geek community decided to go develop their own tools in parallel (Linux, BitCoin, DevOps platforms, etc)?  We knew, we complained, we got shut down.  The issue is now all that software is running on nearly every computer out there.  Every computer in the current paradigm is considered a security risk.

It also means the insurance industry now has to pull out of all insurance guarantees on engineered systems with an ISO certification for every industry.  It's a fucked up mess that's going to cost tens of trillions of dollars to migrate and patch every existing system on the planet. 

froze25's picture

Android is Linux based as well as the routers that have been reportedly compromised use Linux as a Operating system. Nothing has been spared. I believe IOS is UNix based (or IOS is just IOS) so that one is compromised as well. Now if UNIX is compromised that means (potentially) that IBM mainframes are compromised. Now if IBM Mainframes are compromised it means, Banks, Insurance, and other behemoths (they mostly use IBM Main Frames for their back-end functions) maybe ticking time bombs. Scary shit.

Ghost of Porky's picture

But it's for your safety.

froze25's picture

The usual Zerohedge Trolls are awfully quiet today...

divingengineer's picture

You're right....that's weird.
And we thought they were Soros zombies, heh.

Madcow Kaczynski's picture


Must be a big shipment of smack and coke coming in today.

Gotta make hay while the sun shines!

Paul Kersey's picture

Really off-the-grid may come to mean off of any electronic sites or communication devices. Just wait until online bank account hacking becomes an epidemic, and then imagine if the TBTF banks or the U.S. Government was doing the "hacking". Good luck recovering any money or explaining bounced payments.

Winston Churchill's picture

Would that be an improvement from drug smuggling ?

divingengineer's picture

The difference is I enjoy drugs.
Being spied on....meh.

Secret Weapon's picture

No -- It is for blackmail, financial gain and supression of political dissent. 

auricle's picture

As this revelation comes out I can only ask why no other president has come out against this? What conservative or liberal isn't absolutely disgusted that the three branches of government for at least the past 40 years has allowed a shadow government to exist with such sweeping and unchecked powers? They have the ability to destroy anybody they don't like and it is on display front and center with Trump. I hope he uses his authority to destroy and rebuild these agencies. 

MsCreant's picture

I hate to be paranoid, but what a great cover by which to collapse the economy-- say it is all unreliable and start "fixing" shit. 


edit: Former CIA head says wikileaks could be "very damaging."

LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL. To who, ass hole?

Hurricane Harry's picture

Just remember all the media drama the "Y2K bug" caused.  This could be orders of magnitude worse.

deth's picture

Astute observation. Cover, or neutron trigger?

CPL's picture

IBM sold them all the technology to do it. 

There is only one technology company on the planet with a staff of lawyers larger than the government to muddle any type of legislation together.  IBM is that company, it has been doing it for a very long time.  And they own all the IP that the eye can see for technology.  The problem now isn't IBM anymore though.  It's now huge risk that's been emptied like a slop bucket of designing failure into engineered products.  The places you have to worry about this isn't banks, insurance companies or any financial services.  It's all the infrastructure that keeps it running.

The nuclear plants, the dam systems, the fisheries, the wind generators, the solar cell, the coal plants, the water filtration systems, the power distribution systems, air traffic control systems, Carbon scrubbers, Trucks, trains, planes, cars.  All these systems are worth a lot more than a bank because if a nuclear plant shits the bed, everyone is going to have a really bad day.  Fukushima is just one plant out of hundreds running poorly engineered, questionable garbage sold.  All of them open to anybody with the exploit and pretending this shit doesn't leak.  No way, there's probably already a team of people of various agenda's seeking that information right now.

Basic civic safety concerns allowing, business side of this matter.  Opens the door to massive litigation to the companies that punched holes in engineered products and the companies that sold the defective products.  And we're not talking a couple of things.  We are talking about everything that keeps it running has built, has been announced that there are known flaws for anyone using them.  That's a huge risk.  Completely uninsurable and opens the door to anyone to bring any of these guys to the cleaners.  And put a steel boot in the face of the insurance industry.

This is the no win situation for the insurance industry.  Either they knew and pay a fuck tonne of money.  Or they were ignorant, and still pay a fuck tonne of money.  It's going to be a good time to be a lawyer, lots of court settlements are going to happen.

pliny the longer's picture

we are well into no man's land with this and anyone's guess is as good as the next guy's.  So u may well be right CPL.  However, as someone who has worked with insurance carriers for a career, rest assured they are not going to take the fall for this.  Insurers are the elephant in the insolvent room, every bit as bad as banks.  AIG?  Munich Re?  please.  and they are no less greedy. They will literally tell anyone and everyone to bugger off if it comes to that.  

in short, insurers suck.  

and, if this turns into a 'thing', all claims will be grouped and a fund set up, like with asbestos, like with the gulf oil spills, like with the imminent cell phone lawsuits, etc ad nauseam.  so injured parties will get in line for literally years and then be grateful for their shitty pittance.  


Zorba's idea's picture

Toatally agree...except being grateful for the shitty settlement.  The Insurance racket is much like the War racket...lots of collateral damage and profiteering. 

CPL's picture

I don't doubt, not the first time is it? 

The issue is when the security holes start to effect the insurance industry, kind of hard keeping lights on, food on the table and business running if someone were to break into the flawed systems and mess with water intake in a nuclear facility.  Or start playing with all the planes in midflight over cities.  Or telling train tracks to switch when they shouldn't. Secrets as dangerous as the key to all systems to manipulate and spy on, thats also going to happen.  It wasn't going to be used for much else given the paradigm given in the documents in the vault

Dr.Vannostrand's picture

CPL - 

I think it was about 3-4 years ago, maybe more, you had an incredible rant. Something terrible. Mothers calling for killing, etc. You identified yourself by name. Will you ever let on what that was about? It is something constantly on my mind and I rarely see you on here. I asked you once before, you mentioned a snowflake causing an avalanche. Things all around are going exponential, how long we will have ZH as a platform is anyone's guess. So again I'll ask; what did you mean by all that? I've seen your skills in action and by no means am I calling you out. Just seeking to understand better. 

CPL's picture

Yeah, and we've got a lot snowflakes nowadays don't we?  The other information is for paying customers, which none of you are.

CPL's picture

Millions of little know nothing snowflakes, the odds and numbers are now primed not just for a single avalanche, but 10000 of them.

mc888's picture

I think you're giving IBM technology way too much credit. AIX on P series is still pretty good; but their x86 platform is garbage, and the Z series market share crashed long ago. So IBM joined the slave trader industry with companies like CSC and HCL. That's the lion's share of their global revenue.

The only technology move they got right in the last few years was partnering with Brocade on 8G FC.



CPL's picture

IBM is really a bunch of credit and holding companies.  They directly and indirectly through their downline own a lot of business.  They lost the ability to make good products years ago, but they certanly did partner with governments and agencies to make the earth's largest security hole happen.  If people are wrecking their shit without them knowing.  They've only got their own stupid ideas on engineering to blame for being such clods.

To be blunt, you don't save that.  You step out of the way so it kills off everyone by accident.  In short, shut up and watch them fall on their own sword.  Stop helping them.

mc888's picture

Fair enough point. And how many security holes do the slavers import into the US with every block of approved H-1B's?


CPL's picture

The USA is not my concern.  Again, they are not my customer.  As a contractor I don't hire myself to countries that have bounced cheques before, failed on payments or listen to professional advice.  To those people you feed them bullshit and bad ideas when they don't pay.  You let them steal all the good ideas that only look good, but are horribly destructive in the short and medium term.

Good ideas are only for paying customers.  Because my comfort > people that don't pay and waste my time.  I can do that last one quite well by myself.

One World Mafia's picture

Redundancy, if it can be bugged, they will bug it over and over again open source notwithstanding.  None of it is really news, but news revivals are sure needed to get the word out.

Google spokeswoman Gina Scigliano confirms that the company has already inserted some of the NSA’s programming in Android OS. "All Android code and contributors are publicly available for review at" Scigliano says, declining to comment further.


Through its open-source Android project, Google has agreed to incorporate code, first developed by the agency in 2011, into future versions of its mobile operating system, which according to market researcher IDC runs on three-quarters of the smartphones shipped globally in the first quarter.NSA officials say their code, known as Security Enhancements for Android, isolates apps to prevent hackers and marketers from gaining access to personal or corporate data stored on a device.Eventually all new phones, tablets, televisions, cars, and other devices that rely on Android will include NSA code, agency spokeswoman Vanee’ Vines said in an e-mailed statement. NSA researcher Stephen Smalley, who works on the program, says, “Our goal is to raise the bar in the security of commodity mobile devices.”

See, there's no need to worry: the reason the NSA is generously providing the source code for every Google-based smartphone is for your own security. Oh but it'sopen-sourced, so someone else will intercept any and all attempts at malice. We forgot.
Zorba's idea's picture

Well, I'm bullish on the emerging "patching sevices".  It'll be interesting who capitalizes on this...I know, I'll call my senator, no doubt he/she will have the inside scoop from the little piggies. 

divingengineer's picture

TOR is the least of our worries it sounds like.

ReZn8r's picture

No we aren't paying for that shit. Take every fucking dime from the criminals and use their ill gotten gains tp pay fpor this.

prime american's picture
prime american (not verified) ReZn8r Mar 8, 2017 1:58 AM

I'm making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life. This is what I do...

Chris Dakota's picture
Chris Dakota (not verified) froze25 Mar 7, 2017 3:24 PM

Snowden gave the docs to "Glenn Greenwald" who decided what we need to know.

"Because until closed, any hacker can use the security hole the CIA left open to break into any iPhone in the world."

Why they gave Steve Jobs cancer, he wouldn't let them in.

The old commie homo did.

Chupacabra-322's picture

@ Chris,

Criminal Offshore Globalist are committing Corporate Espionage against USA Citizens with the Collusion and Pimping of the High Ranking INTEL GOONS within the CIA/NSA/OTHER INTEL BUREAUCRACIES.

UselessEater's picture

Snowden gave the docs to "Glenn Greenwald" who decided what we need to know.

THAT is my propblem with Snowden. Look at who Greenwald associates with.


UselessEater's picture

Pay Pal blocked Assange.... Peter Thiel.


Edit: My bad I was thinking of Omyidar ...same bucket really Thiel thinks monopolies are good for human kind and Omyidar loves Ag21...hail from the same clan

Zorba's idea's picture

that is a baseless and useless insinuation.  Julian has shared WIKI contents with most of the planet. Pfffffffff

jaxville's picture

  Steve Jobs did not die from cancer.  He died from stress.  Somewhere, someone in the world was making a nickel on his products and he wasn`t getting a cut.  Trying to figure a way to get a cut of that nickel is what killed him.  Total greed.


NidStyles's picture

Steve Jobs only got paid $1 a year from Apple products...

Abbie Normal's picture

Yeah, he died of greed...and pancreatic cancer that took five years to kill him...when 99% die within a year.  He sure looked like an end-stage AIDS patient in those final days.

I_Am_'s picture

Maybe relates to Your 15 March event  date.......