Michelle Obama's passport leaked in new hack blamed on Russia

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An image identified as a scanned copy of U.S. first lady Michelle Obama’s passport was published online today by "DC Leaks," along with personal emails associated with a man identified as a “low-level White House staffer who worked with Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.”

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Polar bears hold Russian scientists hostage on tiny Arctic island

ITAR-TASS
A group of Russian scientists have been trapped for two weeks by polar bears at an Arctic island weather station. The scientists face a month-long wait for a rescue.

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Oppps.ru: patient zero in Russia's fake news epidemic

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Donald Trump did not slam the International Paralympic Committee's decision to bar Russian athletes from the 2016 Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro, and the BBC never quoted him as saying, "The decision to bar Russian Paralympics athletes was made by complete retards. These people are the real cripples." But virtually every news outlet in Russia ran a story saying both things were true, after Oppps.ru (The Optimist) ran a completely false story to that effect. Read the rest

Top Russian anti-corruption official had $120M in cash in his apartment

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Dmitry Zakharchenko, the deputy head of the Energy Industry Department of the General Administration of Economic Security and Combating the Corruption, also had €2m in cash. Read the rest

How Hong Kong's vulnerable, reviled refugee community saved Edward Snowden

Supun and Nadeeka let Edward Snowden hide in their home in Lai Chi Kok; Jayne Russell for National Post

When Edward Snowden flew to Hong Kong with thumb-drives full of damning US government documents, he assumed his freedom was forfeit: he didn't even make an escape plan. Read the rest

This week in terrifying, mind-boggling password breaches

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800,000 usernames and passwords from Brazzers, a giant porn site; 98 million passwords from Rambler.ru ("Russia's Yahoo") and, coming soon, the entire user database for VKontakte/VK.com, Russia's answer to Facebook. Read the rest

White House orders Russia hack investigation, Congress wants to know if Trump is involved

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Anonymous U.S. intelligence sources cited by NBC News say the White House has ordered a special intelligence task force to look into Russia's recent hacks of various Democratic political organizations.

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Unsuccessful hack targeted New York Times in Moscow, FBI blames Russia

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U.S. officials are investigating online security attacks that targeted reporters at The New York Times in Moscow. A U.S. official said Tuesday that the Times was among various U.S. news organizations targeted. CNN was first to report the story, and the Times has since confirmed and corrected some details.

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Was NSA Hacked? Leak from 'Shadow Brokers' suggests so, Russian intelligence suspected

GARY CAMERON/REUTERS

As our Cory Doctorow reported previously, a previously unheard of hacker group calling themselves The Shadow Brokers announced this week it had stolen a trove of ready-to-use cyber weapons from The Equation Group (previously), an advanced cyberweapons dealer believed to be operating on behalf of, or within, the NSA.

The Shadow Brokers are auctioning the weaponized malware off to the highest bidder. Read the rest

Siberian heat wave unleashes deadly 'zombie anthrax' outbreak

A family in the hospital with anthrax in Russia, 2016. Image: Channel 1

At least 90 people have been hospitalized from an anthrax outbreak in Russia, including 50 children. Eight are confirmed as infected with anthrax. Doctors believe at least 6 patients have the more virulent intestinal form of the disease, which killed one boy, age 12. Authorities say it's the first fatal anthrax outbreak in Russia in more than 75 years.

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DCCC hack: FBI probes Democratic congressional group intrusion; Links to DNC hack and Russia investigated

Congressional candidates that are running for office and being supported by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee watch a video while standing onstage at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S. July 27, 2016.   REUTERS

Yet another U.S. Democratic Party group has been hacked, the FBI said today. This latest cyberattack against the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (or DCCC) could be related to an earlier hack against the Democratic National Committee, Reuters reported, citing unnamed sources on the FBI investigation.

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Russia and other states could hack the US election by attacking voting machines

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It's been more than 16 years since faulty voting machine technology called into question a US presidential election, and in the ensuing 1.6 decades, the voting machine industry has used bafflegab, intimidation and salesmanship to continue selling faulty goods, whose flaws surface with despressing regularity. Read the rest

FBI: Russia hacked DNC. US officials: Electing Trump, crushing Clinton was Putin's goal.

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Did Vladimir Putin order the Russian government to hack the Democratic National Committee, obtaining emails that Wikileaks has since released, to take down Hillary Clinton in the 2016 US Presidential elections?

That’s the theory that emerged rapidly inside American intelligence and law enforcement agencies since the 20,000 leaked internal DNC emails spread throughout the internet, just before the beginning of the party's convention in Philadelphia.

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What is going on in this video of a Russian freeway incident?

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I watched this bizarre video a couple of times and couldn't figure out what's going on. I think Folderpirate on Reddit has the best theory:

The guy on the bike was in on it. It was a carjacking/kidnapping targeting the first car. Guy on bike stops traffic by trying to cross in front of mark. Mark stops. Argument ensues as cyclist smacks car/yells/is obnoxious/wont move out of way. Mark gets out of car while it's running. Two kidnapper cars come up, grab the mark and his passenger, and steal their car.

Also, the guy filming is in on it as well. He's filming this to mail it to whomever they are going to try and get money from.

There seems to be a bit more going on. Are the guys in white caps bodyguards? The car that stopped for the bike looks expensive, so maybe it belongs to an oligarch's kid who has two white-capped face-pushing goons to clear the way for him? Whatever happened, it was well planned and smoothly executed, like a scene from a thriller. Read the rest

To see the future, visit the most remote areas of the GBAO

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Jan Chipchase travelled 7,100km through the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Region (GBAO) ("a remote, sparsely populated, mostly Pamiri, Kyrgyz-speaking region of Tajikistan") with only a small piece of hand luggage, and in those rugged, beautiful mountains, discovered 61 glimpses of the future. Read the rest

Russia's ghastly Children's Rights Commissioner finally quits

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Pavel Astakhov -- celebrity lawyer, courtroom TV star, crime novelist, reciter of impromptu religious poetry -- has finally met a scandal he couldn't laugh off: when he met with the children who'd survived a boating accident that killed 14 of their friends, he opened with "So, how was the swim?" Read the rest

Snowden publicly condemns Russia's proposed surveillance law

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Edward Snowden has taken to Twitter to condemn Russia's proposed "Yarovaya law," which provides prison sentences of 7 years for writing favorably about "extremism" on the Internet, criminalizes failure to report "reliable" information about planned attacks, and requires online providers to retain at least six months' worth of users' communications, 3 years' worth of "metadata" and to provide backdoors to decrypt this material. Read the rest

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