US Cybersecurity Director Expecting To Be Fired After Refusing To Edit Page Debunking Election Hacking Myths

from the ridiculousness-in-a-bag dept

One of the few parts of the federal government that hasn't dissolved into a complete partisan trash heap was the newly created Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), a division of Homeland Security that was created as part of the problematic CISA bill five years ago. While we were disappointed in many aspects of the bill itself, as an organization CISA has done some pretty good work in coordinating and dealing with cybersecurity threats. Throughout the tech industry I've heard nothing but good things about CISA as a government organization, and its director Chris Krebs (as well as the staff of CISA). Indeed, I've heard from many companies preparing for this year's election how useful CISA has been in providing clear and useful information regarding potential cybersecurity threats.

Relatedly, CISA has an excellent Rumor Control page that debunks various myths about potential cybersecurity risks regarding the election. It's very good and very thorough. And, in fact, it debunks many of the myths that various Trumpists have been spreading around social media in pretty clear and concise language:

It appears that the White House has finally realized this exists and decided it's not a good look for its own organization to be debunking the very same myths that the White House itself is trying to boost and spread as real. The White House apparently asked Krebs to have the page changed, and Krebs rejected the request. He's now telling colleagues he expects to be fired for standing up for the truth and against nonsense about election hacks.

White House officials have asked for content to be edited or removed which pushed back against numerous false claims about the election, including that Democrats are behind a mass election fraud scheme. CISA officials have chosen not to delete accurate information.

In particular, one person said, the White House was angry about a CISA post rejecting a conspiracy theory that falsely claims an intelligence agency supercomputer and program, purportedly named Hammer and Scorecard, could have flipped votes nationally. No such system exists, according to Krebs, election security experts and former U.S. officials.

The article notes that an assistant director at CISA, Bryan Ware, has handed in his resignation and it is believed that this was demanded from the White House related to this particular issue.

Krebs deserves kudos for standing up for truth and a secure election, rather than to be fired for it, while Trump continues to lie, obstruct and pretend he didn't lose the election.

Oh, and thanks to the White House for driving a ton more traffic to CISA's super useful Rumor Control website.

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Filed Under: chris krebs, cisa, cybersecurity, donald trump, elections, myths, white house


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  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 13 Nov 2020 @ 10:10am

    That must have been a fun conversation

    'So we've been making all these baldfaced lies and baseless claims and there you are, a government agency and therefore someone who owes your undying loyalty to The Almighty Trump, running a site telling people what liars we are! We demand that you take al that down right away so we can get back to lying!'

    'Uhh... no?'

    Major kudos to Bryan Ware for sticking to his guns there and refusing to be complicit in sabotaging his agency just so Trump's cult could continue lying unchecked, I could but wish that more in the USG were so principled.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Bloof (profile), 13 Nov 2020 @ 10:19am

    Honestly surprised he hasn't been purged already and replaced with someone Trump saw on Fox News saying that he's great..

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Thad (profile), 13 Nov 2020 @ 10:40am

      Re:

      For all his reputation as the "you're fired" guy, Trump seldom has the guts to actually fire anyone himself. If Krebs hasn't been fired yet, it's probably because Trump told somebody else to do it and they're like "Yeah, sure, I'll get around to that in a little while."

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Jairus, 13 Nov 2020 @ 10:30am

    White House, meet Streisand Effect...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    David, 13 Nov 2020 @ 3:36pm

    Another deep state actor who cannot deal with the truth

    Where's the point in keeping some dweeb who has so little skill dealing with the truth that he puts it up unedited on some web page? What place has such an outblurter in the greatest administration in U.S. history?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      wereisjessicahyde (profile), 14 Nov 2020 @ 7:41am

      Re: Another deep state actor who cannot deal with the truth

      The truth doesn't need editing because Krebs got it right the first time.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Bloof (profile), 14 Nov 2020 @ 8:02am

      Re: Another deep state actor who cannot deal with the truth

      If you have to edit the truth to fit your narrative then your narrative is wrong.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 16 Nov 2020 @ 12:46am

      Re: Another deep state actor who cannot deal with the truth

      Well, the dweeb has been voted out now. So you won't have to listen to his lies for much longer.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Bobinator, 13 Nov 2020 @ 8:43pm

    Overton Bubbles are radicalizing.

    First of all, for the specific example you posted here Mike, the CISA, and any security org, should clearly know better than to pawn off data structuring and data quality problems around birth dates as "just things states normally do because computer reasons". This is like the Chicago PD posting a debunking page about Chicago Murders and stating "There's legal due process, they don't happen in our state because guns, it's normal". Is the public supposed to accept this at face value? The bar ought to be a lot higher. You yourself know what is involved in computer forensics and prooving out a case; generalizing like this is just not professional.

    Second, the CISA, whom I will state is still respect-worthy despite this kind of malarky, shouldn't be discussing election security measures except for technical measures that should be implimented or specific cases and intel about security events. That's their place and they do a damn good job at it. Debunking rumors or myths is not something they should be doing until they are accused or a specific situation arises. They should also not be doing so when there are public statements about Biden admitting publicly he is engaging in election fraud and HOW he's doing it (flood with fraudulent ballots in key areas then delay the legal process) intentionally per the below link (and caveat, what Biden said here can be taken out of context so the entire video is linked, decide for yourself):

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C6u1uKznCYw&feature=youtu.be&t=1152

    This just adds gasoline to the fire.

    Given the contentious time, any reasonable executive org would demand a resignation. Want to Debunk things? Be objective. This is not objective.

    What I find very dangerous about this article, and what TechDirt is putting up on their site specifically in this article, is a willful ignorance about facts and the confusion of sensationalism with jounralistic riguer.

    The election has not yet been certified by all states, there are ongoing lawsuites and election recounts in several states with margins slim enough they could flip the election. Furthermore, some of the lawsuits such as the the Pensylvania state supreme court has decided not to rule on a determination if voters rights are equal (A mail in ballot is not equal to an in person ballot becuase the individual mailing in their ballot was granted more time) which is a constitutional issue at both the state and federal level and SCOTUS has requested to be the one who determines issues of voter equality.

    https://www.scribd.com/document/484162801/PA-Suit#download&from_embed

    Also, the pensylvania legal firm, Porter Wright Morris & Arthur, who given a mostly republican SCOTUS (and who have axes to grind specifically at biden BTW) at this point, is confident in winning, was recently Dox'd then flooded with hate mail and death threats and dropped from representing the republicans.

    When I see the failure to do basic fact checking or present the state of an election objectively or even factually, I begin wondering if the legal points made in the articles are advisable and it leads me to the conclusion that a news source is not trustworthy. Certainly the MSM incessingly and unprecidentedly attacking Trump has been a test of that; when a rich man threatens to take away the wealth from the wealthy, they might as well spend every last nickel they have latching on to power and fortune.

    Please stop pouring gas on the fire with sensationalism. It will only ruin your reputation but it injures people by wasting their time with anxiety and guilt they don't need.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Tanner Andrews (profile), 16 Nov 2020 @ 6:19am

    you won't have to listen to his lies for much longer

    It will still seem like a rather long time.

    Of course there are the Faux News folks who will likely continue to repeat the lies long after the small-fingered cheeto-faced ferret-wearing shitgibbon is fading in our rear-view mirrors. So we should be hearing the lies for a good, long time. Of at least a long time.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Bobvious, 18 Nov 2020 @ 12:53am

    Aaaaaand it's happened

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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