OnPoint by Keith Ng

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OnPoint: SECRET MILITARY LULZ

33 Responses

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  • DeepRed,

    I always thought the McCully e-mail job was the work of script kiddies out for a digital joyride. Anonymous have far more worthy targets to pursue.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4301 posts Report Reply

  • kiwicmc,

    Why are they sending work emails to an xtra account? Sackable offense in some companies I have worked for. Mind you - I've been guilty myself when the 50MB work Exchange account overflows...

    Sydney, Australia • Since May 2008 • 67 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    Well, McCully did promise today to cut $40 million from MFAT today. Motive from the inside, perhaps?

    I'm starting through the emails, and they reveal a lot of arrogance from the minister's office, plenty of deprecation of his Pacific counterparts, cosy Australian relationships, and general ignorance towards foreign aid.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2135 posts Report Reply

  • MxDEJ,

    "Wouldn't it have made more sense to sit on this account which they have already compromised and continue to grab information from it?"

    Not if (a) it's true that "McCully had asked that official emails be forwarded to that account while he was overseas in April last year" and the good stuff had dried up (that quote is from the Stuff article that you link), or (b) McCully changed his password.

    It's quite funny, but understandable, that you'd spend more time wondering about claims made by purported Russian hackers, and trying to piece together their real identity, than consider that someone, somewhere, actually changed their Xtra password.

    Auckland • Since Feb 2012 • 18 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Clarke,

    The ultimate sign of the hackers' incompetence is that they appear to have made 'the big reveal' to stuff.co.nz. Might as well have leaked it to The Wiggles.

    -36.76, 174.61 or thereab… • Since Nov 2006 • 164 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    If I'd been those hackers, I'd have logged into Westpac, selected the "New Zealand Government" account and requested a new password.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4459 posts Report Reply

  • izogi, in reply to kiwicmc,

    Why are they sending work emails to an xtra account? Sackable offense in some companies I have worked for.

    Sackable offence in most of government, too. Especially for the sorts of communications McCully would deal with day to day.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 408 posts Report Reply

  • Caleb D'Anvers,

    Is the use of a private email address some kind of OIA work-around? Remember how Sarah Palin (infamously) used Gmail for certain communications, in the belief that she would therefore be outside existing retention and disposal schedules for records-keeping, and could essentially do what she liked and be exempt from FOI requests? I'm not saying that this is necessarily the case here, but there are possible motives for the use of a non-governmental email address that go beyond simple incompetence or cluelessness.

    East Greenwich • Since Mar 2008 • 432 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    I would like an opposition politician to ask a parliamentary question about what disciplinary measures would be taken against a senior civil servant who sent confidential/secret communications to a private email address, and then ask how McCully has been disciplined.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2962 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Reeves, in reply to Caleb D'Anvers,

    As No Right Turn said on The Standard

    comment 5:

    But nothing is off the record. if the informationis held by the Minister in their official capacity, then its official information and subject to the OIA, no matter what format or storage medium it is in. Hell, the OIA even applies to information in Minister’s heads, which means you can tell them to write stuff down, and offer to extract it surgically if they refuse.

    “Private” email accounts only hide information if the Minister is going to break the law. And then their staff should be having a quiet word to the Ombudsman about it.

    Near Donny Park, Hamilton… • Since Apr 2007 • 94 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace,

    I would think there are some serious questions for the Member of Parliament for the Wairarapa (John Hayes) to answer. If you have never heard of him, you might remember him as the candidate in the 2008 campaign who, in his SUV, almost ran down a young protester.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 2087 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18881 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace,

    For a bit more context, John Allen is also Chair of the Employers' Disability Network - a group of business people promoting the employment of disabled people. Never met him, but I've heard he does good work with EDN. He was appointed by the currrent government to head MFAT (previously at NZ Post), rather than someone who had come up through the diplomatic ranks.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 2087 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Stephen Judd,

    Except that a) we don't have civil servants, we have public servants and b) parliamentarians are not public servants, even when they are Ministers. So the same rules don't apply, sadly.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd, in reply to nzlemming,

    I know the same rules don’t apply. That doesn’t matter in making a political point, namely that McCully has done something that would count as poor performance and warrant discipline for just about anyone else.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2962 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    The SMBC cartoon leaves out the pertinent fact that there are quite a few people who hack as in panel A. They just mostly work for states and security companies. For any given individual's email account, panel B will probably do nicely.

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2093 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX,

    From the bottom of paste bin - "This is skid stuff".

    John Hayes seems to have an axe to grind - perhaps at one time John Allen got the girl and John Hayes missed out.

    The hidden agenda behind the slash to MFAT is a drive to “achieve more” policy goals by buying Key appearances as an offshore talk show host guest - he is so fantastic.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1194 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Audrey Young has a story on the Hayes connection.

    It's quite possible that the "mindless wasteful admin crap" was simply Finance requiring him to fill in his expense forms properly. McCully and his ilk regard "aid" as "investment" and demand a financial return on it.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • chris, in reply to DexterX,

    buying Key appearances as an offshore talk show host guest – he is so fantastic.

    The Tony Robbins of gnomes.

    中国 • Since Jan 2010 • 900 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    John Hayes seems to have an axe to grind – perhaps at one time John Allen got the girl and John Hayes missed out.

    John Hayes - MFAT enmity is hardly new, it goes back most of the last decade.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2135 posts Report Reply

  • Jeremy Eade,

    What does the ministry of FAT (bad name) do? What are we trying to achieve? (Best Ceo voice on)?

    auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 1112 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Jeremy Eade,

    What does the ministry of FAT (bad name) do? What are we trying to achieve? (Best Ceo voice on)?

    It tries to upgrade to NTFS

    #coat_hat

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to chris,

    The Tony Robbins of gnomes.

    Key is a corporate help yourself guru - not (a mum and Dad investor) self help guru.

    Robbins does good - Key does no good. Selling "stuff" is the best they can come up with.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1194 posts Report Reply

  • Jeremy Eade,

    My point is from slim personal readings, our trade and foreign policy goals are either fuzzy or never sufficiently spotlighted and debated.

    Personally I'm all for departments that benefit our country and I can't see how defunding such institutions benefits them.

    I mean this all around reduction call on public service staff is very poor "long term" thinking given the importance of such activities.

    To break institutions and break the intelligence cycle of experience that all organisations are benefits of is poor national thinking.

    But the other problem is what the hell are the poor people working there expected to achieve.

    auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 1112 posts Report Reply

  • Jeremy Eade,

    Even Fran O'Sullivan now believes in the power of Government,

    Surely she must see the strengths of modern Chinese style help/ modelling/ inteference(?) in their basic business activities in an ability to build dollars in and keep folk employed.

    auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 1112 posts Report Reply

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