Podesta Leaks More Likely Due To Incompetence Than Russian Hack

Thursday the third of November saw the 27th release of confidential e-mails from the server of Clinton Campaign Chairman John Podesta by Wikileaks. In addition to revealing how President Barack Obama appears to have been fully aware of the illicit use of a private email server by Hillary Clinton, the biggest data dump in U.S. Election history has also shone a light on how Podesta himself has been on the payroll of top Clinton donor the Sandler Foundation for some time. Additional revelations have also established the full extent of the links between the Clinton Foundation and Teneo Holdings: an organization that describes itself as ‘a global advisory firm that works exclusively with the CEOs and leaders of the world’s largest and most complex companies.’ This fact in itself has apparently resulted in donations of $4.3m from Coca Cola, $1.1m from Barclays Capital and $780,000 from Dow Chemical to the Clinton Foundation; whilst the Podesta revelations have also seen the political analyst Donna Brazile being dumped by CNN as a result of her collusion with the Campaign leadership.

Other embarrassments for Podesta, the Clintons, the DNC and even President Obama have included revelations that Bill Clinton and Barak Obama attempted to influence the EU’s austerity deal with Greece; and that there were major disagreements among Clinton staffers with regard to the wording of Hillary’s testimony at the Benghazi hearing in October of last year. In an attempt to get the heat away from themselves, and onto those that they view as being responsible for the mess that they are currently in, members of the Clinton Campaign Team have tried to accuse the Russian news agency RT of direct involvement in the apparent email hack without producing any evidence to support their claims. And, although WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has already hinted that the source of at least some of the trouble may indeed lie closer to home, there is evidence to suggest that the entire political farce came about as a direct result of Podesta’s own stupidity.

According to a report posted by Chris Menahan on the InformationLiberation website on October 20 and subsequently picked up by the YOUR PERCEPTION IS NOT REALITY blog spot, which the mainstream media have largely ignored, John Podesta fell for a routine internet phishing scam as a direct result of his own stupidity and ineptitude. The source of the trouble appears to have originated from Podesta’s Gmail account. And, according to Menahan’s detailed assessment of the situation, at no point were Gmail’s servers hacked into or compromised. What actually appears to have happened is that a standard bit.ly link characteristic of what is generally referred to by hackers as a ‘spear-phishing’ exercise was sent to him in an unsolicited email which redirected him to a phishing site.

The site he was taken to redirected him to a standard fake login page which informed him that his password had been compromised and told him that he needed to change his password immediately. This he promptly did and the rest is history. According to Menehan the URL that took him to the fake google login page that successfully compromised his account is associated with a well-known hacker persona generally referred to as ‘Fancy Bear’, who is alleged to have links to a number of Russian interests. Thus far however, no one has linked this person or persons to RT. However, U.S. intelligence officials have since confirmed that the Fancy Bear hacker used similar techniques in an attempt to hack the DNC, and was directly responsible for the successful hack of former Secretary of State Colin Powell’s email.

In spite of reports on the Motherboard and Politico websites firmly laying the blame on Fancy Bear, the former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt, a well-known ally of the Soros Camp, has been amongst those who have since attempted to put RT in the frame for merely reporting what was being released by Wikileaks. On October 29 however the situation appears to have backfired as it emerged that tens of thousands of e-mails belonging to Huma Abedin, a prominent Clinton staffer who has been at the centre of a number of allegations of sexual impropriety directed at Hilary Clinton had been found on her estranged husband Anthony Weiner’s laptop.

In an article for Zero Hedge a journalist using the nom de plume Tyler Durden revealed that large numbers of the emails that had been migrated from Adedin’s personal e-mail server, to an open account accessible from Anthony Weiner’s computer, had been extensively redacted. This would tend to suggest that those responsible for forwarding them were aware of the sensitive nature of the materials contained within them. Which means that those ultimate responsible for allowing them to be sent were aware of what they were doing, and that there might be problems if they were found out. And, the fact that the email account being used by Huma Abedin, to which Weiner appears to have had direct access, was unsecured and therefore open to being compromised could well result in a criminal prosecution at some stage after the Presidential Election has taken place. A situation which is unlikely to be made better by continued attempts to put the blame on Russia for a matter for which Podesta himself appears to have been largely responsible.





John Podesta Wasn’t ‘Hacked,’ He Fell For An Email Phishing Scam






Rupert Ferguson
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Rupert Ferguson

Journalist at Distract The Media
Rupert Ferguson is a published author, journalist and radical film maker with specialist interests in local government, politics, environmental issues and Traditional English and Scottish Folk Music. His academic work has been endorsed by the likes of Sir Melvyn Bragg, the late Sir James Watt KBE and the former head of Humanities at Bingley College in Yorkshire, England; James Reed.

Having begun his career as a junior researcher at Thames Television in London, he has written for a wide range of publications including 'The Brighton Reporter', 'Durham Town and Country', 'The Brighton and Hove People' and 'The New Celtic Review'. As an exhibited film maker he has been a regular contributor and award nominee at the Portobello Film Festival in London; and has seen his work shown at the annual London Film Makers' Convention at the prestigious Round House Theatre.

As well as receiving enthusiastic reviews from BBC Radio 4 and others for his book on Sir Walter Scott, his pioneering work as an Underground Film Maker on the fledgeling Goa Trance Scene has set him in a field of his own amongst many of his contemporaries; both in the UK, where he presently resides, and elsewhere. Current projects presently in hand include a book centred on his 'Legendary London' series of documentary films, which have stimulated an enthusiastic response from the likes of Glenda Jackson and others; and a novel set in France and Edinburgh during the eighteenth century Scottish Enlightenment.

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