Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Police Extremist Unit Investigates Allegations of Computer Hacking at The University of East Anglia's Climate Research Unit (CRU)

"While this is not strictly a domestic extremism matter, as a national police unit, we had the expertise and resource to assist with this investigation, as well as good background knowledge of climate change issues, in relation to criminal investigations."--NETCU

Who is responsible for illegally leaking/hacking the e-mails and other documents on the server of East Anglia's Climate Research Unit (CRU)? Were the culprits Tomsk hackers affiliated with or encouraged by the Russian FSB (state security/KGB), as the British media speculate? Was it the Chinese state security, as the FSB claim? Was it a disgruntled CRU insider, as global warming skeptics claim? The British intend to get to the bottom of this mystery.

Britain's National Extremism Tactical Coordination Unit (NETCU) explains:

Domestic extremists use a variety of tactics to further their cause, which can be disruptive to unprepared organisations and be deeply distressing to employees. Part of our role is to help businesses and academic institutions respond to the threat of extremism and reduce the risk of becoming victims of crime.

We assess risks and provide one-to-one tactical guidance, security advice and support about dealing with domestic extremist campaigns to help protect organisations and their employees.

We also liaise with industry to provide information and updates about ongoing extremist activity.

The NETCU has posted the following press release about its affiliated investigatory organization, the National Domestic Extremism Unit.

Date: 11 January 2010

Statement on UEA computer hacking investigation

The National Domestic Extremism Unit has been assisting Norfolk Constabulary with the investigation into the allegations of computer hacking at UEA, since it was launched in November 2009.

At present we have two police officers assisting Norfolk with their investigation, and we have also provided computer forensic expertise.

While this is not strictly a domestic extremism matter, as a national police unit, we had the expertise and resource to assist with this investigation, as well as good background knowledge of climate change issues, in relation to criminal investigations.

Britain's Advertiser 24 (1-11-2010) [See also BBC 1-11-2010] reports on the law enforcement investigation into the Climategate hacking:

[Great Britain's] Norfolk police reveal they have been working with officers from a national unit set up to respond to the threat of extremism to investigate the [Climategate] theft in November, which saw thousands of emails from the climate research unit published on a public website.

Hackers are thought to have breached part of the university's computer system and leaked the information in a bid to undermine arguments supporting the view that human activity is changing the climate.

It sparked a storm of controversy worldwide, with sceptics alleging scientists had manipulated data - a claim that has been strenuously denied.

..."The police investigation into the leak, which at one point included officers from Scotland Yard, was launched together with an independent review by Scottish civil servant and former principal and vice chancellor of the University of Glasgow, Sir Muir Russell.

A Norfolk police spokesman said: "Norfolk Constabulary continues its investigations into criminal offences in relation to a data breach at the University of East Anglia. During the inquiry officers have been working in liaison with the Office of the Information Commissioner and with officers from the National Domestic Extremism Team."

The UEA continues to co-operate with the inquiry, however major investigations of this nature are of necessity very detailed and as a consequence can take time to reach a conclusion. It would be inapprop-riate to comment further at this stage.

"The climate centre's director, Prof Phil Jones, has stood down from his post while the investigation takes place, but he has said he "absolutely" stands by the science the centre has produced.

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