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John McAfee Explains How He Milked Information From Belize's Elite 275

Posted by timothy
from the ok-but-who-will-play-john-mcafee? dept.
paysonwelch points out John McAfee's latest blog post, which "details the complex spy network that he used to tap information from the highest echelons of the Belizean government. He might consider a new career as a movie producer — this blog post is enthralling. Here is an excerpt: 'I purchased 75 cheap laptop computers and, with trusted help, intalled invisible keystroke logging software on all of them — the kind that calls home (to me) and disgorges the text files. I began giving these away as presents to select people — government employees, police officers, Cabinet Minister's assistants, girlfriends of powerful men, boyfriends of powerful women.'"
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John McAfee Explains How He Milked Information From Belize's Elite

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  • Two words: (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 05, 2013 @10:31AM (#42487457)

    Nut Job

    • Megalomania. Is that in the DSM? Ah, wiki says no, it's a type of narcissistic personality disorder.

    • by hey! (33014)

      Asshole.

    • by edibobb (113989)
      He might not be nuts. He might be laughing his head off at all the people he suckered into believing this story.

      Or he could be a nut job.
    • by Mikkeles (698461)

      This fascination with McAfee rivals the "Diana is still dead" nonsense (including the annual repeats).

    • Nut Job

      May I suggest "pervert" as an alternative?

    • by raftpeople (844215) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @03:20PM (#42489245)
      starring Gary Buse as John McAfee
      • by Virtucon (127420)

        ROFLMAO, yeah Gary Busey would be great for the part, either that or Nick Nolte. What amazes me about this case more and more is that somebody in authority, either than the government of Belize, would just have him submit to a psychiatric evaluation or have him committed as a nut job. He has enough money I'm sure they could get Dr. Phil to go take a whack at it.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 05, 2013 @10:32AM (#42487465)

    He certainly is now.

    If I were in charge, I would send him to Belize as a show of good faith.

    • He probably has been in trouble for a long time...or at least running with a bad crowd.

      It will catch up to him, but I don't know if there is any reason to deport him.

      As far as his blog ("TFA") goes, it could be anything. Maybe he thinks he's been working for a gov't...maybe he thinks he's above international law...

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Beware of geeks bearing gifts.

    • by Goaway (82658)

      He's in trouble, all right, but the trouble is mostly inside his head.

  • Slashbloat (Score:5, Insightful)

    by OffTheLip (636691) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @10:34AM (#42487473)
    The amount of coverage McAfee has received on Slashdot and other "news" sources rivals the bloat his software adds to a system. Nothing to see here, move along.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 05, 2013 @11:01AM (#42487587)

      You just wish Peter Norton was this awesome. Fucking superspy.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Just wait until he blogs about bribing his way out of Belize with BitCoin.

      • by SomePgmr (2021234)

        Just wait until he blogs about bribing his way out of Belize with BitCoin.

        Or if some of those computer gifts were Raspberry Pi's. :)

    • by poity (465672)

      And also, "milking" implies coaxing/persuading stuff out of people. This is just data theft (or "fraudulently gaining access to other's private information", if you're anal about that)

    • McAfee serves the role as the Lindsay Lohan of the Geek World. Poor folks love to read about rich folks looking like dumb-asses by finding unfeasible trouble to get themselves into.

      Most of us hear have not become billionaires with our work in the tech industry. It's sometimes refreshing to hear that, despite them having billions, they still do dorky things.

      Or something like that . . .

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by sentientbeing (688713)
      The case has already been booked. Theyre expecting a 30 daily trial..
    • He presents evidence that Iran (Hezbollah) is building up a supply of ricin gas in the US, preparatory for a large-scale attack.

      That's newsworthy, assuming he isn't completely making everything up.
      • by OneAhead (1495535)
        Ricin is not a gas. It's a protein, which makes it difficult to get into gaseous phase without decomposing (at least on a larger scale than a mass spectrometer).

        Also, that's quite the assumption you're making there.
  • I have to call BS, I live along the border of Belize and nowhere, and I mean NOWHERE can you find electronics that cheap. Electronics are gold in these countries.
    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      I have to call BS, I live along the border of Belize and nowhere, and I mean NOWHERE can you find electronics that cheap. Electronics are gold in these countries.

      Custom forms are bullshitted every day.

    • Re:Not possible. (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 05, 2013 @10:44AM (#42487513)

      I generally live in Belize 1/4 of the year now, and its certainly possible to get Chinese generic laptops very cheap here. Much cheaper than in America.

    • Re:Not possible. (Score:4, Interesting)

      by CdBee (742846) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @10:52AM (#42487541)
      I'm inclined to agree, also because I suspect the kind of mindset who would actually DO this isn't the sort of person who would ever admit it - not least because he's forever besmirched his chance of ever doing it again. I suspect McAfee's suffering the after effects of various experimental chemicals, or delusions brought on by withdrawal symptoms
      • In "The Hacker Crackdown" (a great book, for those who haven't read it), the author interviewed and profiled various hackers. He found every single one of them was eager to brag and tell what they'd done. The hacker mindset seems to be that you want to brag about it.

        Understandably I guess, you feel really awesome when you've done something that (you think) few people can do.
    • Remember that 'cheap' for him could be a macbook air......
  • by wonkey_monkey (2592601) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @10:36AM (#42487481) Homepage

    He might consider a new career as a movie producer — this blog post is fictional.

    FTFH?

  • by maestroX (1061960) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @10:36AM (#42487487)
    After the rumours that av producers were also producing virii, at least this confirms McAfee antivirus cannot be trusted.
    No doubt J McAfee will explain his actions as totally justified and honourable.
  • Hmm (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Gaygirlie (1657131) <gaygirlie&hotmail,com> on Saturday January 05, 2013 @10:40AM (#42487495) Homepage

    So, let me get this straight: John McAfee is the founding-father of a large anti-virus company, he's worked with Zonelabs on their firewall software and so on, and then in the end he ends up doing exactly the same thing he's tried to protect people from -- namely, installing keyloggers and spying on everything they type on their computers?

    • Re:Hmm (Score:5, Funny)

      by CdBee (742846) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @10:53AM (#42487549)
      It was Ok though - he supplied McAfee AV on each of the laptops
      • by hawk (1151)

        More seriously, is there any reason to believe that he wouldn't do the same thing with the software he sells--the ultimate trojan on your machine . . .

        hawk

        • Because he has nothing to do with McAfee the company anymore. He says he doesn't even like their software.....
    • by PRMan (959735)
      Well, he does have expertise. Nice to see him stand up to a government that's mistreating him. Hopefully he gives some free laptops out in the US next.
    • Don't you see? It's all a part of the plan. You will need a new license of McAfee anti-virus software to be able to protect yourself from these new pieces of surveillance malware. Norton will not do.

    • I sure hope he purchased 75 licenses for those keyloggers. Otherwise the SPA will be on him like a Bond woman on a corrupt Belizian official.
    • by timeOday (582209)
      You're looking for consistency in whether someone's actions might benefit you, and not finding it. Instead see if there is not consistency in the person's set of abilities, and willingness to take actions in their own self interest.
    • by poity (465672)

      Knowledge isn't ethics; knowledge is power. I doubt he founded his AV company as a personal moral crusade, but did it like everybody else to make money in a niche in which he thought he could excel.

    • the rise of the 'computer virus' was not as clean cut as we remember it. there were people who actively 'played' the 'news cycle' of the day to promote the idea of huge virus attacks. McAfee was just another one of these.

      The problems come when some people start wondering --- where exactly did the viruses come from in the first place. Now there is no evidence that McAfee wrote viruses or spread malware --- but here we can see that he has no moral qualms about doing it. Hence - his entire 80s business was not

    • That's not even the biggest thing.

      In the article he accused Iran/Hezbollah of planning a massive ricin gas attack in the US. He also accused the prime minister of Belize of ordering the murder of a prisoner (the actual murder did happen, that's been independently verified).
  • by Anonymous Coward

    This first one was interesting but seriously; does Slashdot need to 're-blog' everything he says and does?

  • by nimbius (983462) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @10:50AM (#42487535) Homepage
    explain how he sidestepped a murder charge from a soverign nation and has since remained unaccountable as to the history of his seventeen year old female companion and alleged methamphetamine production operation, I believe slashdot can finally put "the amazing adventures of John McAfee" back on the bookshelf.

    There is nothing about this entire series of unfortunate events that shouldnt warrant immediate extradition to Belize, where he can face his accusors in a court of law and presumably vindicate himself. Otherwise this is an indignant millionaires whitewash campaign to secure his innocence through astroturf and puffery. Unfortunately Mr McAfee wasnt found accused of these crimes in say, the Soviet Union or China, both countries willing to mail a dead millionaire back to his respective embassy for nothing short of a Benny-Hill approach to their criminal justice system.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      As I wouldnt particularly trust any western court to vindicate me on minor issues I think a man who has royally pissed of the powers that be in a 2nd world country is wise to stay as far away from "justice" as he possibly can. The only difference between multinational corporate bully boys and sovereign nations is that one thinks its above the law and lets everyone know it, while the other knows its above the law and would rather people thought otherwise.

      This is why we have a man who had consentual sex with

      • > I think a man who has royally pissed of the powers
        >that be in a 2nd world country is wise to stay as far
        >away from "justice" as he possibly can.

        Where is the CIA in all this? And the Navy?

        How did Belize fall into the Soviet sphere of influence? I thought the Monroe Doctrine was quite clear on US use of force in such matters . . .

        hawk

    • by stenvar (2789879)

      explain how he sidestepped a murder charge from a soverign nation

      I don't believe he was ever charged with murder. They wanted him for questioning, which is not extraditable by itself.

    • by DragonWriter (970822) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @12:50PM (#42488239)

      explain how he sidestepped a murder charge from a soverign nation

      He didn't. He is a person of interested wanted for questioning, not a charged criminal. If he was a charged criminal, fleeing to the US wouldn't help, as the US has an extradition treaty [oas.org] with Belize that provides for the extradition of criminals charged with any of a wide array of crimes, including, naturally, as #1 on the list, murder.

      There is nothing about this entire series of unfortunate events that shouldnt warrant immediate extradition to Belize

      You mean, other than the fact that Belize hasn't criminally charged him with anything, much less anything subject to the extradition treaty with the US?

      Unfortunately Mr McAfee wasnt found accused of these crimes in say, the Soviet Union or China

      Or, for that matter, anywhere else. Because he hasn't actually been charged with any crimes, anywhere.

      • by mortonda (5175)

        explain how he sidestepped a murder charge from a soverign nation

        He didn't. He is a person of interested wanted for questioning, not a charged criminal. If he was a charged criminal, fleeing to the US wouldn't help, as the US has an extradition treaty [oas.org] with Belize that provides for the extradition of criminals charged with any of a wide array of crimes, including, naturally, as #1 on the list, murder.

        .. and after posting this to his blog, he has a rather strong argument that he would be the victim of political persecution if sent back, so I would highly question whether we would send him back even if they did press charges.

    • explain how he sidestepped a murder charge from a soverign nation

      It was really easy. He was never charged with murder. That's why he hasn't been extradited either, because there isn't even a warrant for his arrest.

  • by dnaumov (453672) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @10:51AM (#42487537)

    As someone who knows many drug addicts and used to be one himself over 15 years ago: John McAfee's blog is not the writing of a drug addict. Either he is as clear from drugs as he says he is or he has someone else write the stuff for him.

    • by Jaysyn (203771) <jaysyn+slashdot@@@gmail...com> on Saturday January 05, 2013 @11:10AM (#42487625) Homepage Journal

      I don't know, Philip K. Dick or Hunter S. Thompson could have wrote that in their sleep. :D

      Hell, it reads almost like one of Dick's short stories.

    • by arth1 (260657)

      As someone who knows many drug addicts and used to be one himself over 15 years ago: John McAfee's blog is not the writing of a drug addict. Either he is as clear from drugs as he says he is or he has someone else write the stuff for him.

      Yes, cause all drug users are obviously the same.
      Just because he doesn't write like Hunter S. Thompson, Jack Kerouac or Horselover Fat doesn't mean he's not on drugs.

    • by BitZtream (692029)

      You're just stupid, nothing more.

      I myself as well as a few people I know have/were drug addicts to the extreme and were perfectly capable of hiding it from direct relation sometimes even those that lived with us. Hell I did it for years by just being 'discrete' about it and it wasn't until I brought it up that other people found out I did drugs even though I was pretty much high the entire time I was around them for YEARS.

      Just because you are unable to function and be a drug addict doesn't mean the rest of

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Or not?

    I mean spyware on other people's computers sounds pretty criminal to me.

    • Hey, they were free gifts to those people given one. And no one forced any of them to just trust it and not manually wipe and re-install a known clean OS.

    • Self-incrimination is the next "Big Thing" in the Internet. Commit a crime, and then post a video about it on YouTube or Facebook. Some notable examples:
      The kids teasing the bus lady.
      High school football players bragging about raping an unconscious teenage girl.
      Drunk driver hit and run.
      And now the McGaffster himself.

      If this trend continues, it will make police work easier. Forget expensive DNA analysis and detective work. Just search for confessions on the Internet.

      Now, if these confessions are su

  • The brand name McAfee is getting thoroughly trashed. Now all that remains from the purchase is a bloated digital placebo software.

  • McAfee Has keylogers in it that phones home that must be why it's so slow.

  • And McAfee wonders why the Belize government is out to get him? This kind of crime easily would carry a very long prison sentence in most countries.

  • by dills (102733) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @12:03PM (#42487951) Homepage

    This is clearly bullshit.

    At every turn, he attaches quantities to resources:

    75 cheap laptops
    23 women
    6 men
    8 of the women lived with him
    2 people in the Nicaraguan Hezbollah camp
    3 people in Mexico dealing with the Zetas

    The only "evidence" supporting his story are his "so easy to fake my kids could it" screenshots and audio files.

    I think the original assessment stands: This is a guy who has snorted waaaay too much MPDV, is seeing shadow men in bushes, and killed his neighbor in retaliation for his neighbor killing his dog.

    He escaped the country via a combination of his charisma, money, and the ineptitude of the Belize law enforcement.

    This is all just a retroactive attempt at explaining why the Belize government would want to frame him. Look, it's simple...why would Belize kill his neighbor to frame McAfee, when they could simply just kill McAfee instead?

    Paranoid bullshit, and so obviously so.

    • Ya pretty much (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @02:31PM (#42488939)

      I can believe in corrupt police framing people, heck we've seen them do it across the globe. I can believe in corrupt police murdering people, again, we've seen it. But why would they murder someone, to frame someone else? That seems like a "supervillian" move, meaning needlessly complex to achieve the actual goal. Just murder the person you want killed and be done with it.

      There is just no credibility to this guy.

      Also, as a practical matter, if what he says about all this information grabbing is true, he's probably guilty of a bunch of computer crimes in Belize too. He certainly would be in the US. You can't just go and keylog people because you want to.

  • So, the real lesson here is not to accept and technological gifts from a security guru. Gee, thanks!

  • Precis (Score:4, Informative)

    by smugfunt (8972) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @01:07PM (#42488361)
    To summarise:
    After the GSU raid on McAfee's Orange Walk compound he decided to go on the offensive.
    He gave away 75 cheap laptops complete with keyloggers and backdoors to key people in the GOB. He backed these up with human spies.
    Things he claims or implies to have discovered:
    • Prime Minister Dean Barrow ordered the murder of Arthur Young, an uppity Belize City gang leader who died in police custody last year. channel 5 [channel5belize.com]
    • Minister John Saldivar heads an operation smuggling Lebanese Hezbollah operatives into the US. 10 per month. (One was caught in Mexico last year: channel 7 [7newsbelize.com])
    • Hezbollah have a base in Nicaragua where they are mass producing ricin.
    • Hezbollah are using the Zetas to smuggle the ricin into the US.
    • Most of those are independently verifiable except for the small details (the exact person who did it, for example). We know Arthur Young was killed, and we know Hezbollah operatives are being smuggled to the US, and that Iran has ties to Mexican gangs. Naming those people will likely cause problems for them inside their own country, but nothing more.

      The biggest thing here is that Iran/Hezbollah is sneaking manufacturing ricin and bringing it into the US for an attack. If he's right, we're either going to
    • You can't discount this stuff just because you don't believe it's possible that one man and his team could have dug all this stuff up. Motivated individuals can do quite a lot, if they have lots and lots of time, money, and focus. Apparently he has all three.

      A lot of stuff here could cause problems for Belize, but really, the big problem for McAfee is he's now a bona-fide target. Before, he was just some pain in the ass. Now he's probably become a target of opportunity. Depending on how this plays in Belize

  • by ebcdic (39948) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @02:46PM (#42489031)

    ... that the people with the most interest in putting malware on computers were the very same people who sold you software to remove it. So I don't find this in the least surprising.

  • by JasoninKS (1783390) on Saturday January 05, 2013 @04:47PM (#42489827)
    This is all starting to remind me a bit of Randy Quaid. Formerly relatively sane, had a decent career and money, and now going completely nuts. Telling all kinds of stories on conspiracies and how people are out to get him. (although in this case they really do want McAfee)

    Makes me wonder (besides the obvious drugs) what flips in someones head to make them bonkers like this.

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