If You Have Nothing To Hide

Trigger Warning: Schadenfreude ahead.

Anonymous hacked the Fraternal Order of Police.  Tell me there isn’t a smirk on your face.  The dump is being offered online by CTHULHU, who says he’s in the UK and, well, isn’t particularly concerned about the fury of irate cops.

Today I released some files from the Fraternal Order of Police, allegedly the largest union-type body in the US representing sworn-in police officers. Since then, many groups have shared it over social media and other means, for which I thank all who have donated their bandwidth to seed the files over the torrent.

I haven’t downloaded the dump, nor read it, nor really given a damn about what it offers.  Others will sift through it, and if there is anything in there that comes as a surprise, it will no doubt be subject to huge scrutiny and criticism. Given the reaction by some cops, it’s likely that there will be stuff in there to bring a twinkle to someone’s eye.

Note to irritated members of law enforcement
Don’t bother with legal threats or trying to get UK law enforcement to seek revenge. This is me playing nice.
If you want to go nuclear with me, feel free to do so, but trust me when I say you might want to think long and hard before you do.
I’m not known for bluffing, and I know many more of your secrets. About 18TB all in all actually, all unpublished yet.
“I dare you – I double dare you motherfucker” 

Does CTHULHU have the chops to go to war and win? Beats me, but I surely wouldn’t test him.  Then again, there is no reason why I would under any circumstances.

I have no clue how secure the FOP website was, or what level of sophistication was required to hack it. Clearly, it’s way past my abilities, but then, I can barely remember my own passwords, so that’s of no consequence.  No doubt there will be hackers who say it was no big deal to get in, but that ignores the fact that someone did get in, did download the recipe for their secret sauce, did put it online for all to see.

Is it wrong?  Of course it is, just as it would be wrong for someone to rifle through your (or my) personal stuff.  Cops used to be fairly open on the internet about discussing their peculiar concerns. They have cop-only websites that used to be open to the public, but now are hidden behind walls so they can chat amongst themselves about how much they hate people and how nobody understands a cop except a cop.

But whatever sympathy one might have for the pulling back of the curtain on private police discussion and information, it is impossible to not hear their favorite gambit ring in your ears:

Why won’t you consent to a search? What do you have to hide?

Sucks to be on the receiving end of your own bullshit, doesn’t it?  We may not appreciate how it feels to be a cop, but now you appreciate how it feels to deal with you.  Welcome to the club.

13 comments on “If You Have Nothing To Hide

  1. John Moyles

    “The dump is being offered online by CTHULHU”

    This is laugh-out-loud funny. Think of it; they would have come after you with a large net if you had gotten in front of a crowd 10+ years ago and tried that line.

    It also gave me pause – we can easily understand this semantic shorthand in this age of wonder. Things really have changed in a short amount of time.

    These are the days of miracle and wonder,
    This is the long-distance call,
    The way the camera follows us in slow-mo,
    The way we look to us all, oh yeah,
    The way we look to a distant constellation,
    That’s dying in a corner of the sky.

    Also, I was triggered. Twice.

  2. JBD

    What’s equally as humorous is Cthulhu’s rejoinder to various comments made by law enforcement following the dump, particularly about the way the attack was conducted. If electronic data security were field sobriety tests, this is the equivalent of pants falling to the ground during the one-leg stand.

  3. Marc R

    Nobody’s going to be surprised. The biggest fear isn’t their “secrets” being revealed; it’s that the dump will confirm to the public what CDLs have been saying in open court and in written motions for decades.

  4. dan

    Y’know, I think what irritates me the most is that the police are supposed to be citizens; why can’t they think like citizens instead of overseers? The police are never responsible for anyone’s safety, other than their own.

    What do you have to hide, indeed.

  5. EH

    That is really funny.

    Sadly the only lede to date is boring shit like “POSTS ARE CRITICAL OF OBAMA,” which is dog-bites-man news. I am still hoping for “POLICE REVEAL SECRET STAR CHAMBER” or perhaps “SECRET COP SILK ROAD FORUM.” Or “POSTS DISCUSS HOW TO DISABLE BODY CAMERAS.’ Heh.

  6. Patrick Maupin

    Is it wrong? Of course it is, just as it would be wrong for someone to rifle through your (or my) personal stuff.

    You have personal stuff? I thought you were married.

    Anyway, yeah, it’s wrong, and it’s wrong in the same way, but I have a harder time getting worked up over it than I would if it were your secrets, or my secrets, or even WalMart’s secrets, because the FOP gets a huge tax break for being a charitable organization.

    1. SHG Post author

      I’m not sure I see why FOP being a 501(c)(3) matters. Would you break into its offices and use that as your defense?

      1. Patrick Maupin

        I’m not breaking in anywhere, either physically or virtually. But, hypothetically, if I were on a jury contemplating secrets that had been stolen electronically (e.g. no busted-in doors or possible dangerous physical confrontations) that only caused embarrassment (e.g. no bank account numbers) to the non-profit itself (and not, e.g. to any clients or ordinary members), I’d probably find a lot more sympathy for a human victim than for a 501(c)3 victim.

        Is this a principled feelz? Maybe not. OTOH, it’s probably very similar to the feelz that drives the public figure exception to the defamation laws.

        Slightly off-tangent, a recent article by Elizabeth Pollman on “A Corporate Right to Privacy” is an interesting read on 4A issues of corporate vs. personal secrets.

      2. albeed

        No, I wouldn’t use the 501(c)(3) as a defense. I would claim that I smelled marijuana or my dog alerted if I entered their offices.

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