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back to article Climategate cops: We'll NEVER solve email leak hack riddle

Detectives have shelved an investigation into the high-profile hacking of computers at the University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit (CRU). The so-called Climategate attack led to 1,079 messages and more than 3,800 documents being leaked online in November 2009. Critics of the unit's work seized upon the messages to …

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If the deniers are anything to go by

it was the GW proponents trying to get their grants increased.

The only reason GW exists is for research scientists to get 3 year research grants equivalent to 1ps of BP's profits so they obviously leaked it themselves...

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Re: If the deniers are anything to go by

A 3 year reserch grant equivalent to 1% of BP's profits ? Who gets a £250,000,000 research grant ? For that much money I would be happy to prove the whole Elvis/Hitler/Bomber* on the Moon hypothesis......

*Delete as required, research will be adapted to suit.

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Bovine excrements.

No evidence that it was an inside job means it wasn't an inside job??? Really?????

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Anonymous Coward

No, a lack of evidence that it was an inside job coupled with evidence of outside interference would lead to that conclusion.

Ps your keyboard is broken.

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Facepalm

"However, as a result of our enquiries, we can say that the data breach was the result of a sophisticated and carefully orchestrated attack on the CRU’s data files"

Presumably a standard vulnerability or poor password, and they left their fingerprints all over it (.bash_history etc) but they point back to a compromised machine somewhere which no longer exists, thereby putting an end to the waste of tax payers money.

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"The offenders used methods common in unlawful internet activity to obstruct enquiries."

A decent VPN then?

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Anonymous Coward

Crimes need investigation

Given the detailed enquiries which have failed to come up with evidence of conspiracy or improper conduct of the kind alleged by climate denialists, and the consequent controversy over UEA's quality of research work, having a proper criminal investigation of the break in seemed to be appropriate, so long as there was a probability of discovering who was behind the criminal activity.

I don't think criminality is subject to a 3 year statute of limitations. As I understand it, that law concerns civil damages, and criminals can be tried many years after an offence was committed when and if new evidence comes to light. If the break in was paid for by lobbyists working for fossil fuel producers or other parties with a vested interest in discrediting UEA's line of research, another investigation in future might be to follow the money.

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Re: Crimes need investigation

The vast majority of crimes have a maximum term after which they can no longer be prosecuted - a few serious crimes like murder do not have a time limit set by the statute of limitations. As the crimes were minor - unauthorized use of a computer and invasion of privacy - one wonders why the police even bothered to spend more than one or two mandays on the case. If they had caught the person, it would have not have been surprising for the sentence to only be probation or community service. (About the same as for putting graffiti onto a wall.)

Climategate did do a good jobs of exposing a large number of flaws in the AGW arguments and if a trial had occurred then there would have been a good chance that a jury would have found NOT GUILTY irrespective of any evidence. (Especially if the defence lawyer pointed out how much the AGW theorists have cost the average person in higher fuel bills)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Crimes need investigation

"Climategate did do a good jobs of exposing a large number of flaws in the AGW arguments"

Really? I must have missed that, because I thought that was exactly what didn't happen. That was also the view of the three separate enquireries into the matter.

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Facepalm

Re: Crimes need investigation

AC 14:29 is right -- apparently there is no criminal statute of limitations in this case. The former 3-year limitation was apparently repealed before these events. See www.climateaudit.org.

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WTF?

Incompetence? Coverup?

Which is it?

Incompetence on the part of the police in tracking down the clues? Something which they seem to do without much problem in just about every other cyber-security scare.

Or is it a coverup? To hide incompetence at the CRU?

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FAIL

New slogan for El Reg

"The day before yesterday's news, today!"

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Anonymous Coward

Re: New slogan for El Reg

18 July 2012 Police closes UEA investigation

20 July 2012 Climategate cops: We'll NEVER solve email leak hack riddle

That's the wonder of the internet. It is so instantaneous.

Not like those old newspapers. Oh, err, hang on...

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Black Helicopters

So given their statement that means

they found the bloke wat did it. And immediately realized that if they actually exposed who s/he was and how closely s/he was connected to the actual research, we would be able to infer that s/he hadn't actually corrupted or forged the files on transmit as was alleged by the CRU-types. Furthermore, such information if made public might just collapse the whole pig trough at CRU. So, it was best not to talk about it and claim that while they abhor the actions of the hackers, they do have to admit they were a clever bunch and they can't be found.

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Anonymous Coward

"it seems that the story of Climategate may remain a mystery"

Get behind me Climategate deniers.

Ironic that lack of tangible forensic evidence from the CRU should be cited as grounds to require Police drop the investigation.

But inability to publish evidence of global warming for peer review doesn't require the GW merry-go-round to stop spinning.

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This post has been deleted by its author

Anonymous Coward

having had some experience of UEA's IT department

My money would be on incompetence. On behalf of the IT people. The scientists have nothing to do with running the mail servers. I'd be amazed if one in fifty could even make a zip file let alone source an email archive to put inside it.

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Sheldonitis

Why is it that scientists seem to belive they know as much about your discipline as their own and assume advice regardings security backups etc does not apply to them?

IMHO the anglia lot seem to have muppetry down to a fine art.

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