You are hereWashington Post- Democrats call for an investigation of law firm, 3 tech companies

Washington Post- Democrats call for an investigation of law firm, 3 tech companies


February 28, 2011- A group of House Democrats is calling on Republican leaders to investigate a prominent Washington law firm and three federal technology contractors, who have been shown in hacked e-mails discussing a "disinformation campaign" against foes of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

In a letter to be released Tuesday, Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) and more than a dozen other lawmakers wrote that the e-mails appear "to reveal a conspiracy to use subversive techniques to target Chamber critics," including "possible illegal actions against citizens engaged in free speech."

The lawmakers say it is "deeply troubling" that "tactics developed for use against terrorists may have been unleashed against American citizens."

The call for a congressional probe marks the latest development in the controversy over tens of thousands of e-mails stolen from HBGary Federal, whose computer system was attacked in early February by members of a loose collective of unidentified hackers known as Anonymous.

The e-mails, which are widely available on file-sharing sites, show HBGary Federal, Berico Technologies and Palantir Technologies teaming up with a sales pitch to undermine chamber opponents.

The companies proposed forming a "corporate information reconnaissance cell" and discussed tactics such as creating online personas to infiltrate activist Web sites; planting false information to embarrass U.S. Chamber Watch and other groups; and trolling for personal information using powerful computer software. 

The e-mails contain test runs in which the firms culled personal information, including family and religious data, on anti-chamber activists.

The chamber has denied knowledge of the proposals.

FULL STORY HERE:

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