CHRC/Hechme hacking was about evidence tampering

I noted this below, in today’s Lynch List, but I thought that I would flesh this particular point out. Or rather, I would point out something that Mark Fournier of Free Dominion fleshed out, so I guess I’m fleshing out by proxy ( I just like saying ‘flesh out’ ):

CHRC/Hechme hacking was about evidence tampering

Setting the record straight
The CHRC hacking of Nellie Hechme’s account

Maclean’s Magazine has issued a retraction:


In the Sept. 21 article “The CHRC tells itself to shape up” (National), we reported that Human Rights Commission staff hacked into the email account of a private citizen to post racist comments on a website. Maclean’s is satisfied that there is no evidence to suggest that either Richard Warman or commission staff did so. We regret the statement.

This was the proper thing for Maclean’s to do because they had their facts wrong in more than one instance.

1. The CHRC did not hack into Ms. Hechme’s email account, they hacked into her unsecured wireless internet account in a process known as wardriving. To the purist, wardriving involves actually driving around to find someone’s unsecured ISP account with which to access the internet. In this particular case no driving was required because Hechme’s wireless account could be reached directly from the CHRC offices due to the fact that she lived just down the street from the CHRC building.

2. The difference between hacking someone’s wireless account and hacking their email address is significant. If someone’s email account is hacked the hacker can send emails under his victim’s name and read all of his victim’s private emails. This is not what happened here and it was never the intention of the CHRC to do so. The CHRC hacked Hechme’s account to hide the fact that they were accessing the Stormfront website at that time. It worked too, Hechme’s internet service provider testified that the accessing of Stormfront at this particular time came from her address.

3. When the CHRC hacked Ms. Hechme’s account it was not for the purpose of planting hate speech on the Stormfront website and they did not do so when they accessed Stormfront from her private account. They hacked into Hechme’s account to download ‘evidence’. This evidence the CHRC downloaded using her account became very significant because it inadvertantly revealed the user name ‘jadewarr’.

4. When the CHRC realized the significance of the user name jadewarr appearing on the document they had downloaded, using Hechme’s account, they reacted by trying to substitute another version of the document (minus the name jadewarr) into evidence. It didn’t work though because the defense was able to get both versions submitted into the record which ultimately resulted in the exposure of jadewarr and much more.

Maclean’s magazine got their facts wrong on this one so it is right that they had to retract, but the truth is much worse than what Maclean’s originally reported.

Read it here.


8 Responses to CHRC/Hechme hacking was about evidence tampering

  1. Don Sharpe says:

    So which is worse?
    Hacking or evidence tampering, whatever.
    The CHRC should burn for it.
    Maclean’s showed real class.
    “We’re wrong, we admit it, let’s move on!”
    J-Lie and the CHRC are the polar opposite of Maclean’s magazine.

  2. Anonymous says:

    “they hacked into her unsecured wireless internet account in a process known as wardriving.”

    No they didn’t. There is no evidence to support that.

    Give it up already. Or are you hoping to join the long list of people who need to be sued right into the poorhouse to get them to stop lying about basic matters of fact?

  3. Kevin says:

    I don’t echo the tone of the anonymous comment above, but I do share the concern. I don’t think there’s evidence supporting this allegation. From the best I can tell, the story is something like this:

    -An IP address was assigned to Hechme on a certain date.
    -On a totally different date, that same IP address was used by the CHRC to access the website in question.
    -Hechme lived about a block away from the CHRC offices.

    Two major holes emerge:
    -IP addresses are almost always dynamic rather than static. They change constantly as you log an and log off. The chances of the same person having the same IP address on two different days are really small. The IP address was assigned to Hechme on one day was almost definitely assigned to someone else on the day that the website was accessed by the CHRC.
    -I think most people’s experience with wireless connections is that they fade pretty quickly as you move away from the modem. Every now and then you can catch your neighbour’s connection, or someone else’s in your apartment building. But a block away? That’s quite a stretch I think in most people’s experience.

    The best I can tell, the evidence shows that it’s really, really unlikely that the CHRC hacked into Hechme’s connection. If I have any of those facts wrong, I stand to be corrected.

      • Thanks Kevin. Yeah – I have my reservations when it comes to the hacking allegations. I’ve made them in the past, but I’ve tried to refrain from doing so now, in light of the uncertainty involved in the allegations. I don’t doubt that certain CHRC employees were posting pseudononymously, or that Richard Warman has done so as well. But for right now, there’s simply not enough evidence to really make any accusations as to the hacking.

        I have my suspicions, of course, but for now, that’s all that they can be, until any further evidence should be brought to light :)

  4. Joe Valent says:

    there’s always a way on finding hacker account

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