News report claims Dutch spies hacked Russian cyberwar operation and pwned their CCTVs, then recorded video of Russian government hackers attacking the DNC

Dutch left-leaning daily de Volkskrant has published a remarkable -- but thinly sourced -- report claiming that a Dutch spy agency called the General Intelligence and Security Service of the Netherlands (AIVD) hacked into the network of a notorious Russian spy group called "Cozy Bear" or APT29, thought to be an arm of the Russian spy apparatus, and obtained direct evidence of Russian state involvement in the hacking of the DNC during the 2016 US election campaign. Read the rest

Wells Fargo's CEO told Congress that he wouldn't enforce binding arbitration, so Wells is getting sued in Utah

A class action suit by some of the 3,500,000+ Wells Fargo customers defrauded in the company's fake account scam was foundering in Utah, thanks to the company's insistence that its binding arbitration clauses also applied to the accounts it fraudulently opened (that is, by agreeing not to sue the company for defrauding you over the accounts you opened, you were also agreeing not to sue them if it opened a bunch more accounts and forged your signature on the papers). Read the rest

Israeli firm Cyberbit illegally spied on behalf of Ethiopia's despots, then stored all their stolen data on an unencrypted, world-readable website

Researchers from the University of Toronto's amazing Citizen Lab (previously) have published a new report detailing the latest tactics from the autocratic government of Ethiopia, "the world's first turnkey surveillance state" whose human rights abuses have been entirely enabled with software and expertise purchased on the open market, largely from companies in western countries like Finfisher and Hacking Team. Read the rest

Cloudflare CEO ponders legal methods of slowing down Ajit Pai's internet connection

As Trump FCC Chairman Ajit Pai tries to kill Net Neutrality under cover of Thanksgiving, Cloudflare CEO Matthew Prince has tweeted that he is looking into ways that he can legally take up Josh Constantine's challenge to give Pai "14.4k dial-up speeds for killing net neutrality." (Image: Evan-Amos, CC-BY-SA) (via /.) Read the rest

Trump Soho, funded by mobbed-up Russians, is taking Trump's name off the door

11 years ago, Trump made a big deal out of the Trump Soho, a 46-story luxury hotel/condo that paid Trump for the use of his name and the dubious management services of the Trump Organization; now, after a string of scandals including the revelation that Trump's business-partners were money-laundering Russian mafiosi, the revelation that Trump had defrauded buyers with lies about the sell-through, and the toxification of Trump's name for anyone with a lick of sense of decency, the business is parting ways with Trump. Read the rest

After a show of solidarity from America's critics, Disney caves on blacklisting the LA Times from movie screenings

Disney has ended its blacklisting of the LA Times' movie critics from advance screenings -- a move it took in retaliation for a pair of in-depth, investigative articles that cataloged the one-sided deals it has extracted from the city of Anaheim, where it is the largest employer, taxpayer, charitable giver, and political contributor -- after the nation's movie critics announced that they would not review nor consider for awards any Disney movie. Read the rest

Spanish government announces plan to seize power in Catalonia, remove elected government

Yesterday, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy announced plans to remove the democratically elected regional government of Catalonia and replace them with direct rule by the national government in Madrid. Read the rest

Trump's war on leakers has neutered the intelligence community's whistleblower program, which diverts leakers

The Intelligence Community Inspector General office is the place where spies and spook contractors who discover wrongdoing are supposed to be able to confidentially report their suspicions and know that they'll be investigated and acted upon. Dan Meyer, who is in charge of liasing with whistleblowers is now prohibited from talking with whistleblowers, from briefing agencies or congress or send out the office's newsletter. He has been stripped of his deputy and staff. Read the rest

Corporations form coalition to ask a court to ban coalitions (of people the corporations have screwed over)

One of the major triumphs of Elizabeth Warren's Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was a rule that banned the finance industry from using binding arbitration clauses to prevent defrauded customers from joining in class action suits to sue crooked banks. Read the rest

Trump's cutback-crazed health secretary loves billing private jets to the US taxpayer

Obama's cabinet secretaries flew commercial or took the train, with a few, rare exceptions that were approved at the highest level, but Trump's aptly named Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price sure loves to charter private jets and bill them to the US government. Read the rest

America's dirtiest, biggest student lender neutralized by federal watchdog

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, founded by Elizabeth Warren prior to her career as a senator, has entered into an unprecedented settlement with National Collegiate Student Loan Trusts, the largest holder of student debt in the country. Read the rest

Bipartisan Congress blocks Jeff Sessions' plan to revive civil asset forfeiture

Civil asset forfeiture allows police departments to confiscate and keep property they claim results from criminal activity, without having to prove that any criminal activity took place -- this turned into a national scourge, until cops were stealing more from Americans than burglars, until the Obama administration shut down the DoJ's enabling program in 2015. Read the rest

Deposit "tips" that are actually fake money with Bible verses in the church collection plate

A recurring outrage theme on the internet is hard-working restaurant servers whose "tips" turn out to be fake US currency printed with Bible verses, bearing the reassurance that these are "more valuable than money." Read the rest

Monsanto's lawyers forgot to ask a court to suppress damning evidence about cancer and corrupt science

Monsanto is facing over 100 lawsuits in a Federal district court in San Francisco brought by people who attribute their non-Hodgkin's lymphoma to exposure to glyphosate in Monsanto's Roundup weed-killer, and as part of the discovery process, it submitted internal documents to the court that detailed shenanigans in the company's internal science and its dealings with regulators and the press. Read the rest

Norwegian Islamophobes mistake bus-seat-covers for burkhas, go bonkers

Members of the Norwegian Facebook group "Fedrelandet viktigst" ("Fatherland first") mistook a photo of an empty bus whose seats had been draped with black covers for a bus full of women in burkhas and went Brevik-bananas, decrying the rampant Islamification of Norway and generally being easily frightened, fragile Aryans. Read the rest

Malware sucks: crappy code makes it easy to hack hackers

Common Remote Access Trojan (RAT) tools -- which allow hackers to remotely control hijacked computers, from the cameras and mics to the hard-drive and keyboard -- are very badly written and it's easy to hijack computers running the "command and control" components that malicious hackers use to control RATted systems. Read the rest

Selling arms to alien arthropods is a tricky business

Good Business is a short science fiction film about a very dodgy arms deal indeed, with a sting in its metaphorical tail; the film was created by Ray Sullian, adapted from Simon Roy's comic of the same name. (via JWZ) Read the rest

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