Cybersecurity

For the Delicious Irony Files

By Paul Rosenzweig
Friday, May 16, 2014, 9:20 AM

A report from the cyber underground where most of my Lawfare colleagues don't normally follow:  File this one as a delicious irony (or, if you prefer, a delightful irrationality).  Many will recall that back in 2010 when WikiLeaks first started releasing classified materials many of the financial intermediaries (Visa, Mastercard, Western Union and PayPal) started blocking donations to WikiLeaks.  In retaliation, hackers affiliated with Anonymous initiated DDoS attacks on those web sites.

Fourteen Anons were subsequently arrested for their actions, charged criminally, and pled guilty.  They are known in the blogosphere as the PayPal14.  Among other terms of sentence, they owe PayPal $80,000 in restitution.

PayPayl is owned by Pierre Omidyar, the founder of e-Bay.  Omidyar is also one of the funders of Firstlook.org, a new internet journalism organization that employs, among others, Glenn Greenwald.  So the irony, of course, is that the PayPal14 owe Omidyar money, yet he profits (they say) from the disclosures that WikiLeaks enabled.  As Raw Story reports, Anonymous is protesting the "profit" being made by Greenwald through his new book and Greenwald's association with Omidyar who has not waived the restitution claim.  According to Raw Story, Greenwald could not be reached for comment.

And, in a further (unrelated) irony, Greenwald's book is available for illegal download on Pirate Bay.  NOTE:  It probably is a copyright violation in the US, so don't do it! :-)

HT: My Norwegian colleague ...