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  (Source: Mad Magazine)

Convicted hacker Julian Assange  (Source: Sydney Morning Herald)

Convicted hacker Adrian Lamo  (Source: Zero Zumbrun)
Nixonian dirty tricks alleged by former donor

Yesterday we posted that Adrian Lamo became only the second source in Wikileaks history to become outed as a source.  The site appears to have purposefully let loose the information in its personal vendetta against Lamo for turning in Army leaker Bradley Manning.

We have since established contact with Nadim Kobeissi, a hacker whose conversations with Adrian Lamo were also leaked.  Nadim asked us for some clarifications.  Also, in the wake of recent postings, Lamo is calling on Wikileaks chief and ex-hacker Julian Assange to step down.

Nadim tells us:
Nadim: Wikileaks published that log, not me. I am responsible for sending it to Wikileaks.
Nadim: The logs were first found on a pastebin.
He confirmed with us that it was this pastebin that we came across yesterday (the contents have been deleted, since):
http://pastebin.com/PDTUGLNZ" rel="nofollow

He also tells us that the account on the Fairfax forum was an imposter.

He writes, "The purpose of these logs was never to personally attack Lamo, but to provide evidence that shows that he and Poulsen are both very unreliable sources, and to give Manning, a person whom I consider to be a hero, a fighting chance in his presumably upcoming court case. I would like to attest, as I have done so many times before, that during my first two years of knowing Lamo he was an excellent friend and a person that did aid me through my first year of college. I won't forget that. But I am frankly appalled at the level he's gone down to these days, and it is out of indignation and anger at his actions that you see these logs released today."

Regardless, Nadim did elect to pass the private logs to Wikileaks.  It is important to note that they are of marginal at best relation to the Manning incident, and while he says he did not mean to attack Adrian Lamo, he admits he purposefully employed the release of the logs to attack Lamo's character and credibility.

More significantly, this appears to be a broader part of some party's plan to discredit Adrian Lamo.  Lamo believes it to be from the Wikileaks leadership.  Adrian Lamo comments, "I think it's clear that no Wikileaks source is safe, for the rest of their lives, lest they do something to offend the Wikileaks leadership and suffer the consequences. Julian Assange must step down in order for Wikileaks to be viable. He has lost his moral authority to lead."

To summarize for those who need a quick recap, the accusations, as they stand, are currently that the convicted computer hacker (Assange) accused the convicted computer hacker (Lamo) of colluding with a convicted computer hacker (Poulsen) to spread misinformation/engineered information, but it may actually be the convicted computer hacker (Assange) who is looking to spread engineered information in order to discredit the convicted computer hacker (Lamo).  And an ex-hacker (Nadim) may also be implicated in the mess.

Or see this helpful infograph [PDF] of who's allegedly doing what to who, if you read that summary and are still confused. [-Ed. Thanks Mike G!]

Update: Friday June 25, 2010 5:33 p.m.-
One commenter double posted a comment to this twitter feed from Nadim.   It should be noted that this was not the information that Nadim provided us in a brief IM interview.  Here is his the original message to us:
1- "He reposted the leaks along with personal IM logs of conversations he had with Adrian Lamo and his wife Lauren Lamo." I did not publish these logs. Wikileaks has exclusively published all logs themselves, and the document very clearly says so. Please correct this.
2- "These logs seem clearly engineered to paint Adrian in a negative light." On what basis do you so bluntly accuse those logs to be "clearly engineered"? Do you care to accuse a particular "engineer"? What sort of unsupported claim is this? Please elaborate.
3- You should have contacted me prior to this article to get your facts straight. Don't you think the media should examine both sides of an issue?
4- The purpose of these logs was never to personally attack Lamo, but to provide evidence that shows that he and Poulsen are both very unreliable sources, and to give Manning, a person whom I consider to be a hero, a fighting chance in his presumably upcoming court case. I would like to attest, as I have done so many times before, that during my first two years of knowing Lamo he was an excellent friend and a person that did aid me through my first year of college. I won't forget that. But I am frankly appalled at the level he's gone down to these days, and it is out of indignation and anger at his actions that you see these logs released today.
5- I do not fabricate. These logs are accurate.
6- Research Asperger's syndrome. I know people very intimately who were diagnosed with it. It does not need (and doesn't even have) any medicine. Just read up on it.
7- Use your brain.
8- Also, before today I was not even aware of the "Fairfax" forum you've linked to. I don't even have an account on that website, have never visited it before and have certainly never posted a single post on it. Please verify this and correct it.
Again, he failed to provide us with this info.  And this article points out the key issue he raises in the email -- that the logs were posted to the pastebin by an unknown source.

And now the crux of the issue -- who leaked Nadim's identity (regardless of who did it, this is significant as he is now the third outed Wikileaks source).  Nadim says it was not Wikileaks, but a second party.

A separate source David House (MIT) chatted with us later this afternoon and says the pastebin was edited to contain this line:
Logs between Nadmin and Lamo's wife Laura, and Nadim and Lamo, as sent to WikiLeaks by Nadim
...Which House says was not originally posted by Wikileaks.  We have been given compelling reason to believe, that this was not in the original paste bin.

Ultimately the true question of Wikileak's credibility and whether it outed anyone still stands, though.  That unknown hinges on a single question -- who leaked the leaks to BoingBoing and told them Lamo sent them?

We are working hard to answer exactly that question.


UPDATE 2: Tuesday June 29, 2010 8:30 p.m. -
We have since come across what seems to show (in the form of a podcast interview Lamo gave to an Australian blog site) that Lamo's allegation that Wikileaks outed him was flawed, and that he actually outed himself, while Wikileaks allegedly confirmed him as a source. We've updated the title according. Lamo asserts that Wikileaks violated site policy by independently confirming him as a source through back-channels.

Lamo has not backed down from his call for Wikileaks director Julian Assange to resign. He claims that even though he outed himself, Wikileaks outed or confirmed him as a source as well -- a distinction which now seems academic.




Comments     Threshold


This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

...
By LeviBeckerson on 6/25/2010 2:47:15 PM , Rating: 5
Is this going to turn into a middle school girl slap-fight? Good grief.




RE: ...
By BruceLeet on 6/25/2010 3:05:36 PM , Rating: 5
Lamo has been a snitch too long, he thinks websites are run like government official baddies who are expected to 'step down', albeit rarely.

you tattled on me quit ur internet job now plz ?


RE: ...
By JasonMick on 6/25/2010 3:13:13 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
Lamo has been a snitch too long, he thinks websites are run like government official baddies who are expected to 'step down', albeit rarely.

you tattled on me quit ur internet job now plz ?


Well if you were caught massively violating your company's policies that's typically what you'd have to do.

Granted none of these allegations against Wikileaks have been proven, though the picture looks pretty convincing.

Wikileaks and Assange either needs to act expeditiously to clear their names, or they risk permanently damaging their reputation as a trustworthy place to share info.


RE: ...
By VitalyTheUnknown on 6/25/2010 3:34:16 PM , Rating: 5
It seems to me that the real story behind this phony squabble Jason, is a coordinated attack against Julian Assange and Wikileaks reputation. No?


RE: ...
By JasonMick on 6/25/2010 3:38:35 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
It seems to me that the real story behind this phony squabble Jason, is a coordinated attack against Julian Assange and Wikileaks reputation. No?


That depends. I do know that Lamo and Assange have long had disagreements, primarily over method of control over the site. Lamo called for more people, more oversight when deciding what to publish, what to hold back. Assange reportedly preferred keeping complete control and a smaller staff.

Ultimately who is attacking who will be determined by whether the allegations about Wikileaks/Assange prove true.


RE: ...
By BruceLeet on 6/25/2010 8:12:47 PM , Rating: 1
Well then it's just a personal vendetta on both sides, and ego-testicle hackers getting involved or were forcibly involved by merits of 'snitching' on each other accusing others of snitching, you're all using the term "leaking" as if it was by accident.

Personally, as an outside viewer I don't believe any other snitches who give information to Wikileaks risk having their identity compromised. It's just this one remote 'incident'.

Liken it to a house party, some guy is cheating on a girl he's with at the party, some other jealous guy or ex will snitch on this guy if he has dirt on him, no other person at the party will be 'snitched' on if they too are cheating because they are not involved, but if they do involve themselves when it is none of their business then the outcome becomes similar to this story, we call these type of guys "bitches", likened to a hacker with an ego.


RE: ...
By Kibbles on 6/26/2010 9:23:09 PM , Rating: 2
If you're talking about Lamo and Manning. It's more like going to a masked party to have sex, drugs, and BBQ. Then ask some guy to have tea and crumpets at Dennis afterwards (cause you thought his BBQ skills were awesome). Then during which you take off your mask.


RE: ...
By erikejw on 6/27/2010 11:29:47 PM , Rating: 2
Is Lamo a puppet?
Who is then the puppet master? Does anyone currently have anything against him? Perhaps some organisation?

Is there any chance anyone has anything on Lamo(former top hacker) that they can use against him or threaten him with(rhetoric question)?

Anyone heard of discredit campaigns?
If you can't stop them, discredit them and have someone else do it for you, preferably, someone from the inside of the "community".

"I think it's clear that no Wikileaks source is safe, for the rest of their lives, lest they do something to offend the Wikileaks leadership and suffer the consequences."

Discredit?

"Julian Assange must step down in order for Wikileaks to be viable. He has lost his moral authority to lead."

Does this sounds like the words from an ex hacker or from a formal national bureaucratic organisation?


RE: ...
By toyotabedzrock on 6/25/2010 11:35:42 PM , Rating: 3
Considering your slanted reporting I would guess it will.


RE: ...
By frostedambassador on 6/25/2010 5:03:58 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
Is this going to turn into a middle school girl slap-fight?


Only if DailyTech keeps posting the ridiculous, unfounded accusations of Adrien Lamo as true statements without any fact checking or even consistency checking.

The basic disregard for truth and even for plausibility these articles show to anyone remotely familiar with the story of Manning, Assange, Lamo, et al. makes me sick.


RE: ...
By Lord 666 on 6/25/2010 6:30:11 PM , Rating: 3
Agreed. I will even go so far as calling for Jason Mick's resignation from Dailytech for these series of articles.

This whole saga has reached a new low with the termination of Jason Mick as the only solution.


RE: ...
By JasonMick on 6/25/2010 6:59:05 PM , Rating: 2
quote:

Agreed. I will even go so far as calling for Jason Mick's resignation from Dailytech for these series of articles.

This whole saga has reached a new low with the termination of Jason Mick as the only solution


My limitations are
1) This whole incident has been filled with wild claims from both ends.
2) I don't have the power of omniscience to perfectly know all.

Here's the logical path followed here...

I am working with the information I've been given.

Lamo was the first one to give me information.

Next, Nadim contacted me and provided me with limited information that did NOT explain where his leak was sourced from. (See above update)

Next, one of his colleagues provided me with compelling evidence that the chat log posting was altered and that the source of the logs (Nadim) was not originally included. This essentially rules out the initial accusation of Lamo, hence the update (not the changes). I left Lamo's quote in to preserve what he had said.

The question of who outed Lamo as a source to BoingBoing remains though. Until that is established I cannot completely rule out Lamo's original accusation.

I'm currently working to try to discover this info through several sources.

I have been reporting EVERY verifiable fact as soon as I have received it, and additionally let everyone put in their say (everyone who contacted me, that is).

Whether you enjoy this commentary or hate it, the ride's not over.

This is a very newsworthy story. I know you love to criticize me, but about the only thing I see the need to apologize for is a lack of having the power of omniscience.


RE: ...
By frostedambassador on 6/25/2010 7:26:32 PM , Rating: 2
Jason,

I appreciate your willingness to update the article as new information is provided by commenters and sources, and to maintain transparency by leaving the comments that point these things out. These things should be applauded.

However, at the same time I think it's seriously irresponsible to post the original claims of these articles as news stories. Those who read the article before the updates get a very raw, one-sided piece of information from a single source presented as an impartial news update.

In the future, I would hope articles that discuss such huge and unlikely accusations either 1) contain research and varying viewpoints before being published, or 2) make it clear that they are statements from a single source that have not been researched.

I wish you luck in getting to the bottom of this. For my part, I imagine Lamo either gave the logs to BoingBoing himself or through a third party, they were stolen from him, or there's a whole other layer of deception going on re: Lamo/Manning.


RE: ...
By michael67 on 6/25/2010 7:47:59 PM , Rating: 1
In my opinion the tone in the article here is that WikiLeaks, is on the wrong site of there own policy, even do it has not bin proven yet.

Further more that you have bin Lamo and that you like the guy (noting wrong whit that), do to me it looks like you take his side. (and that's wrong imho)

I would say you should be more careful, in putting the blame and try to be more nutritional till there is proof one way ore the other, as this is costing a lot of peoples there reputation and your name can be added to the people hows name gets trashed if your not careful.

From what i have seen till now its hard to see what has happened but, but i lean against more and more that Lano was wrong in reporting the guy.

Also if it was in Lano opinion so wrong Manning was doing and so serious, the lack of interest during the chat Manning had whit Lano was one of the tings that surprised me.

All in all i would say be careful what you say because there are a lot of tings that stink here and i for one don't know ware the stink is coming from.


RE: ...
By Lord 666 on 6/25/2010 7:50:33 PM , Rating: 1
Jason,

Please take a step back and look at the way you have been "reporting" it. Screen scrapes of IM logs or he said/she said of Twitter converstations? Is that how the New York Times or the Washington Post would report it? http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/artic... or even http://blog.washingtonpost.com/spy-talk/2010/06/ne... Please note that the last link is a blog. What it really comes down to a who, what, where, when, and why. Emphasis on the "why" is key here.

For whatever motive, convicted felon "security experts" are communicating their dirty personal laundry to Jason Mick/DailyTech. Agreed that this is an important story, but has it come to mind that you could be manipulated and used as a tool in this saga? From a reader's opinion, you are taking the bait hook, line, and sinker and bringing DT along for the ride. The thing that is the most questionable in these "exclusive" interviews is that instead of talking to Oprah, Howard Stern, or via an attorney, these people are selecting Jason Mick of DailyTech!

Lastly, your use of "love to criticize me" is both unprofessional and inaccurate. If this were a real news journal, it wouldn't be a stretch to judge your comments as libelous and unnecessarily personal. My request for your resignation was on a professional level because of the "tabloid style" journalism these series of reports have taken. In all fairness and honesty, I have backed many of your reports/blogs/news items. However, these two past blogs with respect to Manning/Lamo leave much to be desired professionally.


RE: ...
By frostedambassador on 6/25/2010 8:03:15 PM , Rating: 4
Another great example in approaching this story journalistically is Glenn Greenwald's recent article: http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/... .

You may agree with or disagree with his assessment, interpretation, and opinions of the situation, but he makes clear what is fact and what is speculation. The value of the article is the collected information presented and the informed interpretation (with biases noted) that the writer gives.

Also, the description of the way Lamo interacts with journalists may be an interesting resource for you, whether you find it accurate or not.


RE: ...
By bh192012 on 6/28/2010 2:29:56 PM , Rating: 2
How do you figure? from your linked salon article

"Despite being convicted of serious hacking felonies, Poulsen was allowed by the U.S. Government to become a journalist covering the hacking world for Security Focus News."

was allowed? Like you have to get permission to be a journalist?


RE: ...
By Reclaimer77 on 6/25/2010 8:12:43 PM , Rating: 2
Wouldn't it be great if this went to court and Mick was pulled into it? lol.. one can only hope.


RE: ...
By sandhuatdt on 6/25/2010 8:03:24 PM , Rating: 3
Jason,

I switched from engadget to dailytech to keep up with tech updates. For me, engadget is too Apple oriented. Last thing I need on my RSS reader is noise and frankly when you transparently keep regurgitating anything anyone tells you then you add to noise. My first preference would be not to see these political/espionage/who-said-what type of stories on DT. If you absolutely must, then please do not do a bit-by-bit in/out. You are an editor so please edit. Collect whatever you discover via various sources, say over a period of 4 weeks, parse over the data, verify if possible, condense and then present it. Right now, with the current state of reporting, I am as interested in this story as in what Paris Hilton's dog is wearing tonight.

Again, I will emphasize, not sure what this story has to do with *tech*.

Thanks!


RE: ...
By Lord 666 on 6/25/2010 8:07:59 PM , Rating: 1
Maybe Mick has Paris Hilton's number to find out... ;)


RE: ...
By JasonMick on 6/25/2010 8:16:57 PM , Rating: 3
Hey that videotape was /not/ really me I swear!


RE: ...
By frostedambassador on 6/25/2010 8:16:18 PM , Rating: 2
I'm moving the other way. While I don't love Engadget, it's pretty tolerable visiting with the filter that removes Apple stories: http://www.engadget.com/exclude/apple . Some of the Apple stuff still spills out, but it's vastly reduced.


RE: ...
By VitalyTheUnknown on 6/25/2010 8:43:23 PM , Rating: 3
"I switched from engadget to dailytech to keep up with tech updates."

Apples and oranges, two completely dissimilar websites serving distinct demographics. I can only hope that DT would cut down on worthless gadgets stories, actually, this story is much more interesting for me than some next piece of shiny plastic on engadget radar.


RE: ...
By superstition on 6/25/2010 9:04:17 PM , Rating: 2
It's tabloid journalism.


RE: ...
By rdobbs on 6/27/2010 4:59:01 AM , Rating: 2
Adrian Lamo Outs Self as Wikileaks Source Fourteen Days Before DailyTech Article:

http://adrianlamologs.blogspot.com/2010/06/adrian-...

What say you NOW Jason?


Chain of information?
By DominionSeraph on 6/25/2010 3:23:34 PM , Rating: 2
??

There's a difference between being outed as a source and being outed as an actor. Perhaps I missed something, but I see nothing here which has a statement attributable to Wikileaks saying, "We (Wikileaks) are publishing these logs between Nadim and Lamo which were given to us by Nadim." I read it that Wikileaks released it anonymously, so the only clear chain is coming from Nadim is saying Wikileaks is the source that released it and he was the source that provided it.
So he outed himself.




RE: Chain of information?
By johnathanleesmith on 6/25/2010 4:17:49 PM , Rating: 2
I couldn't agree more. Everyone is falling for the ole bait and switch by Nadim. He provided info to Wiki, Published it without saying who gave it. He says he gave it and that Wiki exposed him....


RE: Chain of information?
By johnathanleesmith on 6/25/2010 4:23:53 PM , Rating: 2
Please, allow me to apply a grammar check on myself...and untangle my sentences.

Basically, Nadim outed himself. Wiki never said who submitted.


This is news?
By Phynaz on 6/25/2010 3:27:15 PM , Rating: 4
Hacker chats are news? Must be a slow day.




RE: This is news?
By TSS on 6/26/2010 9:58:52 AM , Rating: 2
Mjeh it's not as much the actual chats as what's going to happen to wikileaks.

Quite a good few scandals have come from that place which might now be over. It's about wikileaks's reputation of protecting their sources.

If it really was a slow day, you'd see an article about how the discrediting of wikileaks ties into Obama's plan to control the internet. Attack the very core of the internet: Anonminity.

Or Another Apple Article.


And the DoD/Pentagon succeed
By BailoutBenny on 6/25/2010 3:27:19 PM , Rating: 5
In successfully discrediting wikileaks, which was their plan all along if that leaked document was to be believed.




Nadim
By subshok on 6/25/2010 4:22:55 PM , Rating: 3
Nadim claims that this article is woefully inaccurate.

He has posted a retort on his twitter account:
http://twitter.com/kaepora/status/17026181888

Frankly, I agree with him. I was the person who "outed" Nadim; the claim that Wikileaks did so is willful misinformation for the purposes of selling a story. Shame.

dhouse@mit.edu




RE: Nadim
By LeviBeckerson on 6/25/2010 5:26:06 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, if you look at his post, and follow the links, he is claiming that yesterday's article was woefully inaccurate. Mick's post today contained parts of Kobeissi's response to that article.

Whether or not that has any impact on this article, I can't say, but let us cast stones in the proper direction.


Call For Retraction
By Zero110 on 6/25/2010 4:46:49 PM , Rating: 3
I think a retraction is in order after reading that twitter link. I was surprised at this barrage of non-stories about Wikileaks on DT, but I'm more surprised to find out that they're not in the least factual.

I may be wary of the leadership of Wikileaks, but I think its ostensible goals are unimpeachable. Your first story makes absolutely no sense. And this one is flat out false.




RE: Call For Retraction
By DigitalFreak on 6/25/2010 10:41:40 PM , Rating: 2
DT is the tech equivalent of the National Enquirer gossip rag. What do you expect? The overwhelming majority of articles here are editorials poorly disguised as news.


I have had enough Jason Mick
By dark matter on 6/26/2010 8:15:00 AM , Rating: 3
His articles are awful, mostly spam or flame bait. Click happy is Jason. Terrible reporting, terrible topics and a fragile ego is enough for me to say "bye" to DT.

It's been nice, but the last few months have been really grating on me.

Jason, you really have brought DT into the gutter and I for one will not follow.




RE: I have had enough Jason Mick
By iFX on 6/27/2010 12:28:10 PM , Rating: 2
I can't help but agree. So long.


Wait and See
By HighWing on 6/25/2010 3:09:14 PM , Rating: 2
Now it will be interesting to follow wikileaks and see if there is a drop in stuff being submitted to the site. As I doubt Julian will step down without a fight. And you can bet that anyone who has or was thinking about submitting to the site is probably thinking twice about doing so.

Personally I agree and think Julian should step down now if the site hopes to continue operating at all.




RE: Wait and See
By subshok on 6/25/2010 5:11:03 PM , Rating: 2
Nadim claims that this article is woefully inaccurate.

He has posted a retort on his twitter account:
http://twitter.com/kaepora/status/17026181888

dhouse@mit.edu


Re: Lamo and Manning...
By MicheleMooreHappy1 on 6/26/2010 1:21:19 PM , Rating: 2
Have Manning's alleged IM exchanges with Lamo been authenticated? Someone close to Manning may have set him up. There is a strong motivation to find a source for two major, very embarrassing video leaks.

Lamo sounds like someone who may have been compromised by the authorities who are trying to bring Wikileaks down. Mention of extensive State Department cables, which Wikileaks denied, would serve to discredit Wikileaks and disrupt their fund raising activities.

Clandestine agencies excel in deception and deliberate disinformation.




By frostedambassador on 6/26/2010 6:43:55 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Have Manning's alleged IM exchanges with Lamo been authenticated?


No. The single source of any chat logs is Lamo.

We have not heard anything about Manning's side of the story, as he has reportedly been detained in Kuwait for nearly a month.


Ack!
By NuclearDelta on 6/25/2010 10:41:10 PM , Rating: 2
*Runs back to arstechnica and slashdot while crying*




By rdobbs on 6/26/2010 9:05:18 AM , Rating: 2
"Ex-hacker caught lying about Asperger's institutionalization story"

Why doesn't someone report on this?




Information War
By Dude7546 on 6/27/2010 4:54:08 AM , Rating: 2
What you see now is the US government attacking Wikileaks by using Lamo, they have him by the balls and he has to everything they tell him




Re: Lamo, Manning et al
By MicheleMooreHappy1 on 6/27/2010 1:05:24 PM , Rating: 2
A bunch of people in the Pentagon, DIA, NSA et al are getting their butts chewed daily because they have not caught the culprits and Wikileaks plans to release another embarrassing combat video shortly.

So they throw some newsworthy things out to cover themselves publicly, lean on Lamo, try to discredit Wikileaks and see what comes back. It's better than sitting around looking stupid. They can say they are "running an operation" to find the leak sources.




confused
By invidious on 6/25/2010 5:14:14 PM , Rating: 1
What does any of this have to do with technology? Why does anyone care about wikileaks or about lamo?




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