Home news Doxing scandal: And the Interior Minister is relaxed

Doxing scandal: And the Interior Minister is relaxed

The theft of hundreds of data from politicians and celebrities fits into the context of right-wing intimidation strategies. It is eerie how the case is downplayed and depoliticized.

Well, that was enjoyable. It was a short excitement in the new year and, yes, a few politicians and celebrities were spied on and robbed in their privacy. But they were a bit naive too. A little more risk-averse action should be expected. But, hey, the investigative authorities have shown what they can do. This may also be said at this point, without presumption, but with a little pride: our services can do much more than what this villain has demanded of them. The boy was also impressed when our officials arrived. You should have seen that. Yes, still goes to school. He did not like what politicians say so publicly. But, no, he did not have a dominant political motive. Yes, well, members of the AfD were missing as victims, but what should be deduced from it? Unfortunately, unfortunately, the stolen, intimate data can not be deleted and the distribution of the data can not be completely prevented. But otherwise: no evidence of third party involvement.

That was roughly the tone in which the Ministry of the Interior and various investigative agencies were struggling to minimize the serial theft and doxing of data from 1000 people. Of course there are good reasons to report about crime in a calm and objective manner. And certainly it is basically reasonable not to rush into speculation. But even for people with a strong sense of trust in the police and security agencies, the self-satisfied staging of a fabulous manhunt that would sweep away any criticism was a nuisance. After all, "the" hacker (whether he really acted alone, seems to be doubtful in the meantime) had been able to upload his cynical advent calendar undisturbed for a month – where the data could be viewed and stored by anyone who wished to do so. Even for people without a tendency to conspiracy theories, the attempted infantilization with which the alleged individual perpetrator was to be played down and depoliticized was eerie. In the end, the terrorist cyberhacker's (and his presumed backer's) criminal energy scared one less than the unfounded serenity of some in the authorities.

Are Islamophobic slogans already considered unpolitical consensus?

There is a 20-year-old man who, according to research by various media in various forums with statements such as "islam is filthy" and "So people, now you know why the NSDAP will come back" appears, the data of a large number of parliamentarians (except The AfD wants to have leaked because he was "angry" about their comments – and that is a "dominant political motive" agreed? What is a political motive then? How dominant must racist, revisionist ideas be for someone to classify them as racist and revisionist? Is a bed already considered by the parents as a relativizing factor? Are Islamophobic slogans now considered unpolitical consensus? Does it require a "Die, Jew, Die" tattoo on the belly in order to be considered as anti-Semitic motivated or is this now folklorized as fashion?

These are unironic questions. A premature hermeneutics of suspicion, which constructs a terrorist affiliation from any ill-considered sentence or from any criminal act, would also not be desirable. But it is grotesque how political motives were moderated from the outset, how unnecessarily every ideological or logistical connection in local or international anti-democratic milieus was doubted and that the action itself and its consequences were privatized. As if there were no national or international actors who could exploit the captured information for their destabilizing intentions. As if there were not the political context of right-wing intimidation strategies, in which this data leaking (by apparently unpopular persons) is in line. Now it seems reasonable to assume that Johannes S. does not have the technical means to actually have all the data spied out. Whoever helped him in the raid by private and intimate communication – he or she cite and repeat a common in the extreme right-wing milieu practice and feed just this scene with material.

IT Security The German state wants to stop hackers

So the German state wants to stop hackers

After the theft of private politician data it should go fast with the new anti-hacker troupe. So far, the authorities themselves were in the way.By Georg Mascolo


After the NSU's self-exposure in 2011, investigators discovered city maps and lists of 10,000 names that served as "enemy lists". In an anti-terror raid in the so-called Prepper milieu in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in 2017, investigators discovered several lists with names of up to 25 000 political opponents. The Ministry of Justice responded to a parliamentary request from the left, the purpose of such lists was to kill the political opponents in a crisis – but classified the "risk analysis" of the BKA the process rather than harmless. An explicit "death list" may not pose a threat if those who created it are perceived by the authorities to be incompetent or out of touch. Nevertheless, it is important for the 25,000 people who stand on it, at least to be informed.

It is not just celebrities, not just members of parliament that are identified by various groups on different obscure lists as "enemies". Among those to be intimidated are those less protected: booksellers who engage in readings against hatred and violence, or pastors who also look after refugees in their ward houses; those whose names and addresses are leaked include people classified as "too Jew-friendly" or just "homo". Some of them receive threatening letters on a regular basis, some of them have their cars lighted or the windshield smashed, some are spared so far, but they are watching and despised. For all of them, the relaxed attitude of the Federal Minister of the Interior is pure mockery.

Carolin Emcke, born in 1967, is a writer and publicist. In 2016 she was awarded the Peace Prize of the German Book Trade. Read all the columns of her here.

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