Sunday, October 02, 2011

That censorship bent of chavismo

A Twitter logo used by a few...
On occasion chavismo loves to remind us how it is dead set to someday turn off all the voices from people who disagree with them.  The latest attack is on Twitter where a group self called N33 has been hacking all sorts of twitter accounts from opposition figures.  This is not pretty game like we see on occasion in other countries where a political twitter account is as often hacked as the one from some celebrity.  In Venezuela, as far as I know, the only twitter accounts that have been hacked are those from opposition politicians and now well known OpEd columnists. the latest victim being one of my very favorites, Milagros Socorro.

Of course, nothing will be done against that situation, and those people who worked hard at building a large fellowship will lose it all , including possibly some of their best one liners.  Nothing will be done not because it is impossible (at the very least after a few days Twitter will suspend the hacked accounts though I do not know whehter the original owner can recover them).  It is impossible because the law in Venezuela will not do anything against it because chavismo takes pride in such attack on freedom of expression and any declaration from any prosecutor is only a pro-forma.  A convenient pro-forma is seen from outside people who think it is a child's game, without serious consequences. 

 The article I linked above is from FOX news becasue it is the lone one I found in English.  And yet it comes from AP and neither one gets it when they write:
Both Twitter and Google say the attacks most likely involved phishing
or when they allude easily to the "immaturity " of the hackers language forgetting to note that chavismo cultivates such "immature" language to reach better its base....

The truth here is that it is all part of the Cuban influenced attacks because in Venezuela after a few years of chavismo most people have learned to change passwords frequently, and to use separate accounts for their private lives and their political ones (as this blogger does). For so many accounts to be hacked in a few days you need an active participation of some governmental organization which has access to Internet, that is, a "secret laboratory" inside CANTV which is now well linked to Cuban intelligence through the fiber optical cable recently laid between the two countries, largely helped by the French who once again did not show any concern for dictators as long as they pay cash.

The hacking consequences are of course very simplistic but not because these people are immature: they are mature but they are ideologized idiots (redundancy intended).  The accounts of the victims quickly publish a stream of comments supporting Chavez and insulting other members of the opposition.  In a way it reminds me of the reasons why I had to start moderation in my comment section: the chavistas who used to visit were posting as many comments as possibel to drown in noise any other comment that might support my post, criticize chavismo and what not.  It was, and still is, the strategy of those who have no argument, or no defensible arguments, or cannot be bothered in their self righteousness to cobble together a pretense of coherence and debate.  When moderation came to the blog I was accused of censorship when that was exactly what they were doing with their noise, and that is exactly what N33 is doing to Twitter, silence as much of it as possible and blur it with red noise.

One has to wonder what is it with these people who after 13 years still think that if the hoi polloi is not totally behind Chavez at this point it is because they cannot access the regime information.  Amen of them absolutely unable to understand why someone woudl chose to pay for El Universal instead of reading the free red tabloids of Correo del Orinoco or Ciudad Caracas (free at least in hotels and many downtown offices).  And even more unable to understand why people will pay cable TV to watch Globovision when they can have VTV  and TelSur for free.

It is tragic for the regime to have to resort to such idiotic maneuvers to force its opinion on folks.  One would think that by now a substantial chunk of the 2 million followers of Chaevz is from the opposition who use to insult Chavez.  And thus they should know that hacking Milagros Socorro is not goign to gain a single new adept to chavismo.  But now, at Miraflores Palace they still keep such hopes even though almost everywhere else chavista commenters are on a steep decline.  Even here, where moderation has been suspended for a few months now, I have had not a single instance of a PSF visiting and forcing me to erase an inappropriate message.  The new feature of blogger that gives moderation on only posts older than 3 days has worked out quite well, helped along with Chavez discredit as he supported what PSF cannot support; Assad, Qaddafi and the like....

If it were not so sad and ominous one would laugh at the inability of chavismo to force its message, of it feeling like hacking Twitter is dividend to enjoy.  Make no mistake, that twitter hacking episode is yet another sign that the beast is lurking and that when pressed enough it will close Globovision or a major paper, or both....


  1. Anonymous1:09 AM

    Do you have any links to places where I can read about the techniques used by N33 and/or the Cubans to hack Twitter? I find your post very interesting from the political point of view, but I also like to learn about the technology.

  2. Anonymous6:13 AM

    OK, here is a guy who posted a code to do the hacking using a well known exploit.

    I don't know if it still works. We shall soon find out.

    I wouldn't go near any of the many "free" programs out there that claim to retreive Twitter passwords. You don't know what they do in the background.

  3. Island Canuck8:37 AM

    The easiest way would be to own the internet connection, like CANTV ABA, & simply have your Cuban technicians monitor the computer connections of know opposition political leaders.

    Not hard at all.

  4. I'm pretty sure this is done monitoring internet traffic at the CANTV-level. We've seen cases earlier where email has been hacked as well.

  5. El Comandante Candanga has such a strange love-hate relationship with such imperialistic, bourgeois, capitalistic tools as Twitter. The man must be perplexed with his own inner dichotomies, or just blind and drunk with power. Bipolar syndrome perhaps?

  6. Charly1:52 PM

    Why do you people keep talking about Chavez, please have mercy, let him die in peace.

  7. Charly, you are a good person.
    Sorry I must say I am not so much. He will be spitting in our faces until the last moment, so I don't think he deserves to die in peace. If our comments annoy him, tough...

  8. jose

    sorry, i am not a computer geek even though my favorite show currently is the big bang theory.

    i am afraid i would not even know where to look for the links you ask.

  9. Roger4:39 PM

    N33 seems to be what shut down Radar de Los Barrios and as I said before one of my favorite blogs. Hacking happens all over the world all the time. Those who want to avoid it use precautions that most IT professionals know quite well. Needless to say, they need help to keep these sites open and uncluttered.

  10. Anonymous6:23 PM

    So Jose, admit it, you want to learn about hacking.
    I have a site for you by Florida hacker kid jeffk (hax0r in hacker speak), that may be of help:



  11. Charly10:58 PM

    Daniel: Big bang theory? You are just right down my alley, I think this (as well as climate change) is just a big pile of nonsense.

    What is happening with your comment section? Is it being hijacked like twitter? Very frustrating to try to comment on your site. I suspect the lower than life at CANTV are having their last hurrah before their messiah croaks.

  12. charly

    i am sorry to report that i count myself among those who think that climate change is a reality we must deal with.

    as for blogger, it is giving me a lot, lot of problems lately, but other venezuelan blogs in blogger do not seem to suffer as much. it might be the CANTV filtering but then again it might be a problem with the server in the US where my blog is....

  13. The Canadian and Norwegian got it right. They are doing that all the time. There is also the possibility for screening through other mechanisms, but I'm sure that would do for most cases.

  14. Island Canuck7:01 AM

    I can only post about 20% of the time that I try but it's not only your blogger account. I also have problems loading Venpiramides & others.

    Something is causing Blogger to hang. In all cases when it's slow the top beige bar with the search box doesn't load.

    This morning it's fine.

  15. This is very general and outdate already, but some of the main roads used by the regime are there.

    They use Chinese technology for some of the data gathering from telecom. The Iranians were using Siemens-Nokia stuff for the same end.

  16. Canuck,

    It's not blogger that's hanging. It's Venezuela hanging...on a cliff, being pushed by Chavistas.

    I can access blogger without any problem.
    By the way: how do you compare Internet speed in general with Canada?

  17. Danielito...
    de alguna manera me imaginaba que te gustaba Big Bang Theory!!! One of the few things I watch on TV nowadays.

  18. Island Canuck12:32 PM

    Kepler, I haven't lived in Canada for almost 25 years but from hotels on visits there it was pretty fast.

    Here in Margarita we have ABA with 1500 kps & 4 computers connected & pages load pretty quickly. I can load 3 or 4 large content pages like ND or LaPatilla in the time that Daniel's page needs to load sometimes. Again it's intermittent.

  19. Kepler - As you, I have no problem loading Blogger pages. Internet is pretty fast here in Calgary. I used and I got 3592 Kbps
    Not too sure if that's fast or not compared to others, but it works for me.


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