Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Wild Theory of the Day About Hacked Climate E-mails

Hanging over the climate change talks in Copenhagen are the collection of stolen e-mails from the British University of East Anglia now known as "Climategate". The British newspaper The Independent is offering up a theory of who was behind the theft and publication of the e-mails - Russian spies.

According to The Independent, the e-mails popped up on an Internet server in the Siberian city of Tomsk, specifically on a server belonging to a security firm called Tomcity. The Independent then talks about Russia's state security apparatus, the FSB and the speculation that they have employed armies of hackers in the past, though The Independent never actually draws a direct connection between the FSB and Tomcity.

The Independent also never really explains why Russia would hack and post climate-related e-mails. They speculate that it could be so Russia could win concessions from Western governments, or that a country known for its notoriously cold winters might think a little global warming isn't such a bad idea. Interesting theories, but they fall awfully short of a convincing argument or clear motive.

All in all, The Independent's story is a pretty weak one, but it does make for a great Internet rumor.
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