Aussie cops and Feds use DIRT
Stupid, stupid, stupid
The DIRT files Our recent item Cyber cops & security orgs: DIRTy, stupid and out of control touched on the pathetic federation of fools, patsies and malicious creeps which comprises the international securocracy.
In particular, we mentioned that World Systems Resource (WSR), an Australian discount enterprise computing vendor, had sought a non-exclusive deal as a DIRT reseller in the Aussie cyber-cop/securocrat market.
We hardly dared imagine that WSR would have succeeded in selling this preposterous kiddie Trojan as a law-enforcement tool in Oz, but apparently they have with some success.
But there are problems with the toy. In particular, the Aussie Feds want to be able to erase evidence of their filthy deeds (which may include planting evidence) from the victim's machine, but unfortunately DIRT doesn't include a simple scrubber.
An email memo from WSR to DIRTmeister Frank Jones and his shyster Terrance Kawles obtained by The Register illustrates the difficulty:
Cc: "Stuart Ellis" [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Date: Mon, 3 Apr 2028 22:56:55 +1000
We have noticed that when you email a bug and it runs on a target, it leaves information in the desktop.exe dll ie the email address that it is sending the information to. Do you have a version that can delete this registry once "kill bug" has been initiated? This is going to be an issue with the Police department as they will want to make sure that there is no trace of the bug once it has been terminated.
Also, we need to find a way to kill this rouge bug. We do not know what to do. The only option that we can think of is a virus or a self extracting email we can send that will kill it and delete the registry. Have you come up with anything yet ?
Please can you email me with a solution.
This is how sad Australian Feds and cybercops are. They want to use a tool no better than an IRC kiddie's Trojan which enables them to control a victim's machine -- even upload incriminating files to it -- and then skate away without leaving a trace. And they think Frank Jones gives a shit.
We know how his licensing scam works. He sells a full version of DIRT to his patsies for $30,000, and then sells them 35% discounted versions thereafter. Once the distributor/patsy is jammed up over a worthless $35,000 toy, he gets desperate to recover his loss. Enter law enforcement with their public funds. But law enforcement expects real stealth so they can screw anyone they please. Only DIRT fails to deliver the required level of FILTH.
Hence desperate email exchanges like the one above. But by this time Jones has made his money; he doesn't expect to gouge anyone for more than 30K, unless they're especially masochistic.
Aussies rightly concerned about illicit government use of DIRT may consult this roundup of its many flaws and limitations, along with numerous countermeasures. ®