One key element in Mitnick's services is to train employees to not download unknown files or give away information to people on the phone. Mitnick has said the the human element is the weakest link in any computer element. In one of his cases, Mitnick posed as an employee of an alarm company. He showed up at a client's facility and said he needed to make some adjustments to the alarm system. The employee allowed him in and gave him access to the company's network.
Kevin Mitnick calls this "social engineering" which he defines as the ability of a hacker to manipulate people into giving the hacker what he or she wants. This can include passwords, access to systems, names of key people, and other data a hacker would find useful.
In 2010, Scientologist Stu Sjouwerman (pronounced "Shower-man") created a company called KnowBe4. Sjouwerman's company essentially followed Kevin Mitnick's methodology of training the employees of client companies about social engineering. KnowBe4, based in the Scientology stronghold of Clearwater, Florida, teaches employees about phishing, indiscriminately downloading files in e-mails, and other tricks used by hackers.
Seventy years ago today, L. Ron Hubbard published the book that changed his life and sparked a movement, Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health.
Two years later, after the brief Dianetics boom had gone bust (along with his second marriage), Hubbard regrouped in Phoenix and, with the name "Dianetics" stuck in banktruptcy, called his new idea "Scientology," replacing a focus on recovering memories in the womb (a central part of Dianetics) with recovering memories from past lives.
But even as Scientology grew and went in many strange directions, Hubbard's 1950 bestseller Dianetics has remained, even today, "Book One" for Scientologists, and the bedrock text that the movement rests on.
2020-05-09, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
They were having a rough time of it even before the pandemic. Lacking paying customers, they had a hard time finding money to buy fuel to move from one port to another.
Now they are slipping beneath the waves with hardly a murmur...
Their latest promotional piece "Making the IMpossible possible" is offering a "convention" 4 months from now...
Chris Owen's book 'Ron the War Hero' is now for sale, and he's giving us a look today at one of the best things in it — absolutely stunning material, previously unpublished, about the most ignominious of L. Ron Hubbard's blunders during a disastrous World War II experience. Read this and keep in mind that Hubbard spent decades promoting himself as a major hero in Australia.
Twenty years ago this year, I wrote a set of web pages called "Ron the War Hero," a look at L. Ron Hubbard's decidedly inglorious career with the United States Navy during World War II. Over the last two years I've rewritten and greatly expanded it with the aid of new material that's become available since 1999. The all-new Ron the War Hero is now available in book form from Silvertail Books.
Among the stories that it reveals is perhaps the darkest and longest-concealed secret of Hubbard's life: How his incompetence contributed to the loss of 16 lives, two ships, thousands of tons of desperately-needed supplies, and some highly sensitive Allied military secrets. Here, for the first time, is the story of how Hubbard helped to sink two ships — not the enemy's, but his own side's.
VillageDianne is out from the courthouse overflow room again with another report from the Nxivm trial. Today, the prosecution is getting testimony from filmmaker Mark Vicente.
But first, we have Dianne's impressions of yesterday's cross-examination of the prosecution's first witness, a former DOS 'slave' named Sylvie…
During the cross-examination it was hard to hear Keith Raniere's attorney Marc Agnifilo at times because he would step to the side of the podium where the mike was located. But he started out by observing to Sylvie that in 2005, her opinion about J'ness was very different than it is today. Yes, she said, she had some positive opinions in the past. And that was the main thrust of Agnifilo's questions, to see if he could get her to express the positive feelings she had about the training and about Keith Raniere and Clare Bronfman.
2019-05-09, Chris Shelton, Critical Thinker at Large
L. Ron Hubbard invented the state of "Clear" where a person is no longer encumbered by past incidents of pain and trauma, having "erased" their reactive mind. What is it like to achieve this revered state, are there superpowers, how long does it really last and what is this all about? This clip is excerpted from Critical Q&A #2, originally published March 3, 2015. Enjoy!
Today we have the second and third letters sent in the mid-1980s by Don Rogers, an early witness to Dianetics, to author Jon Atack, who has generously allowed us to make them public for the first time. Please see historian Chris Owen's introduction to these letters in yesterday's first installment.
THE ROGERS LETTERS
Today, we'll take a look at how paranoid, far-right fringe political cult leader Lyndon LaRouche attempted to intimidate the musical world into redefining one of the fundamental aspects of musical physics. In some sense, LaRouche's efforts are similar to what Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard did when attempting to reinvent the sound recording process as part of his own aesthetic theory.
The two stories are good for a few laughs. But ultimately, the moral of the story is quite serious. First, cults behave like totalitarian states in their attempts to control artistic and creative expression. Second, these examples remind us that cults are able to get their followers to believe strange things and to engage in quixotic quests that accomplish little save stroking the egos and lining the wallets of power-mad cult leaders. Scientology is far from alone in this regard, and combining our experience in Scientology's ability to get members to do bizarre things with what we learn about similarities between cults can help the cult awareness community to help people more generally in the future.
It would be extraordinarily surprising if a large number of other cultic groups did not attempt to redefine the very foundation of what it means for something to be art. While not all cults do so, we would suggest that the severity by which any group attempts to restrict its members from experiencing certain types of art or where it attempts to reinvent aesthetics is directly correlated with the level of cultic involvement it tries to get from readers.
2018-05-09, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
From the latest edition of Source magazine, the official magazine of the "international spiritual headquarters" of scientology.
You can see they are making a big deal about their new "7.5 foot diameter world map" with "12-sided polygon locator pinpoints." As always, scientology seem to impress themselves by talking about the size of their maps or details of their toys. It's as gauche as someone telling you "I have 7,000 square feet of hand-made silk rugs in the entrance hall of my 40,000 square foot home — and you paid for it."
This magnificent new map is apparently adjacent to "Embassy Row" which would appear to be a reference to the Potemkin Village of empty storefronts representing scientology's front groups. "Embassy Row"? Seriously
In March, we broke the news that the Los AngelesPolice Department is investigating That 70's Show actor and Scientologist Danny Masterson over the rape allegations of three different women who were all Scientologists at the time of the incidents, which occurred between 2001 and 2003.
That investigation is ongoing, but now we've learned just how seriously Masterson is taking it as he has hired renowned criminal defense attorney Tom Mesereau to represent him.
Mesereau has already made contact with the LAPD to tell them that Masterson denies the rape allegations and that Mesereau, with the help of a private investigator named Scott Ross, has been gathering witnesses of their own to back up Masterson's denials.
2017-05-09, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
I really don't profess to understand the very strange bedfellows that are scientology and the Nation of Islam.
I wonder if Farrakhan has noticed that apart from Crooked Alfreddie Johnson, scientology is pretty much exclusively composed of middle class white people? Which as far as I know is about as palatable to the NOI as people on food stamps are to scientologists?
A Special Correspondent sent this poster to me and I am not sure who it was distributed to or what the source of it is.
Spectacular HD video taken from a drone overflight of the Church of Scientology's no-longer-secret secret "Gold Base" in San Jacinto, California. Thanks to the unnamed expert drone pilot for this outstanding video. Featured at the end is David Miscavige's $70,000,000 RTC Headquarters building.
Early in the video the "Eagle's Nest" lookout post is seen. Some have said Eagle's Nest is actually a sniper's nest. Is it?
I had the pleasure of interviewing Jackson Morehead, former Director of Security at Gold Base for many years. Jackson answers the question, "Is Eagle's Nest a sniper's nest?" and many of my other questions, including questions about the weapons inventory at Gold Base, in our interview:
Tony Ortega's Underground Bunker blog post about the video:
An aerial tour of the Scientology operated Rainbow Canyon Retreat near CalienteNevada. The flight includes the natural scenery of the surrounding canyon. This video was created for use in documentaries and may be used by anyone without credit or restrictions.
2017-05-09, David Neiwert, Southern Poverty Law Center
You may have seen the name bandied about on social media, especially in political circles where alt-right activists and avid Donald Trump supporters lurk. Usually it is brandished as a kind of epithet, seemingly to ward off the effects of liberal arguments, and it often is conveyed in memes that use the image of the alt-right mascot, Pepe the Frog: "Kek!"
Kek, in the alt-right's telling, is the "deity" of the semi-ironic "religion" the white nationalist movement has created for itself online – partly for amusement, as a way to troll liberals and self-righteous conservatives both, and to make a kind of political point. He is a god of chaos and darkness, with the head of a frog, the source of their memetic "magic," to whom the alt-right and Donald Trump owe their success, according to their own explanations.
In many ways, Kek is the apotheosis of the bizarre alternative reality of the alt-right: at once absurdly juvenile, transgressive, and racist, as well as reflecting a deeper, pseudo-intellectual purpose that lends it an appeal to young ideologues who fancy themselves deep thinkers. It dwells in that murky area they often occupy, between satire, irony, mockery, and serious ideology; Kek can be both a big joke to pull on liberals and a reflection of the alt-right's own self-image as serious agents of chaos in modern society.
Sixty-six years ago today, L. Ron Hubbard published his surprise bestseller, Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health.
In 2013, we read Dianetics from cover to cover with the help of former church member Vance Woodward, and we produced a blog series that we hope you will use as a companion as you slog through the book yourself. Or spare yourself the trouble and just read our summaries.
Dianetics is truly a vile book. We're not even going to pretend that L. Ron Hubbard had something useful or true to say in it. He was clearly a crank — announcing that his nonexistent "research" had led him to discoveries that rivaled man's taming of fire, for example — and then he proceeded to describe a "science" of the mind which has no science in it of any kind. But it's not just that he was catastrophically wrong when he applied a Reader's Digest understanding of early computers to an occult fantasy about how the human mind works. Even worse, this book is one of the most misogynistic we've read, even taking into account the era during which it was published.
2016-05-09, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
Wonder how Lori Hodgson, Cindy Plahuta, Mary Kahn, Sara Goldberg, Lois Reisdorf and so many others feel about how scientology "honors" mothers.
Scientology presents itself as champions of the family. Masters of communication and relationships. They proclaim communication is the "universal solvent." Yet there are repeated examples of scientology tearing families apart. Forbidding communication. And destroying relationships and lives.
The control mechanism of disconnection can no longer be brushed under the carpet as the church has tried to do for decades. Pretending it is an "individual choice" — "would you like us to shoot you in the side of the head or the back of the head, it's your choice" — is a sick joke.
Katie Holmes broke up with Tom Cruise because she feared she would end up like Nicole Kidman - with a daughter who Scientology turned against her, Daily Mail Online can reveal.
Their six-year marriage was doomed once church members moved into their Los Angeles home so they could cater to Cruise's every whim.
That caused Holmes to freak out, fearing that daughter Suri could end up cutting off all contact with her under Scientology's 'disconnection' policy, the father of church leader David Miscavige revealed in an exclusive interview with Daily Mail Online.
2015-05-09, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
The latest promotional item from the First Bankrupted Continent has dispensed with any pretense about the purpose of the May 9th event.
It used to be a celebration of the anniversary of Dianetics.
At one point it was even an "International Event" though as time went on "COB" found it too much of a strain to attend the March 13th event and then prepare for Maiden Voyage in June AND have to do a May 9th event in between. So, he sent the "B Team."
Robert Shillman heads a publicly traded American technology company called Cognex Corp with a market value of $4 billion. He also says he is a big supporter of last Sunday's Prophet Mohammad cartoon contest in Texas that was attacked by two gunmen who opened fire before being shot dead by police.
In a telephone interview with Reuters from his home near San Diego, California, Shillman said America's free speech is under threat. He added that violent attacks on such events are making people fearful and prone to self censorship. Many Muslims regard depictions of the prophet - such as the caricatures displayed at the event - as offensive and against the religion's teachings.
"It was a terrorist attack on the American way of life," says Shillman, who says he isn't anti-Muslim.
On April 11, we told you that Luis and Rocio Garcia had filed a pretty remarkable "motion to reconsider" after their federal fraud lawsuit against the Church of Scientology had been derailed by Judge James D. Whittemore.
Whittemore had granted Scientology's motion forcing the Garcias to pursue the matter through the church's internal arbitration scheme. In so doing, the judge had said that he made his decision based, in part, on the notion that both sides in the lawsuit had agreed that Scientology was a religion.
The Garcias objected, filing a motion to reconsider, and said they had never agreed to such a thing. In fact, they said, Scientology was not a genuine religion and they wanted the opportunity to prove it.
Senator Nick Xenophon has slammed a Scientology-funded youth group who attended two Canberra Cavalry games in the past two years for "sneaky" recruitment tactics.
Members of Youth for Human Rights, a worldwide group founded by members of the Church of Scientology in 2001, handed out literature at games where it failed to declare it was funded by the religious organisation, although the sponsorship was acknowledged online.
[ALSO, BELOW: The EEOC files a civil rights lawsuit against a Miami chiropractor for forcing his employees to take Scientology courses.]
Wow - Dianetics Day 2013 just gets more and more interesting. We just heard from Laura DeCrescenzo, who updated us on the latest going on in her forced-abortion lawsuit.
We were the first to break the news last year that Ron Miscavige Sr., father to Church of Scientology leader David Miscavige, had managed to escape from Scientology's secretive International Base in an embarrassing blow to his son and another sign of crisis in the organization.
Ron Sr. traveled to Virginia, where he joined another Miscavige church defector, his oldest son, Ron Jr.
Since then, we've been told that Ron Sr. has been adjusting to life outside a church he belonged to for 35 years. His granddaughter, Jenna Miscavige Hill, told us that he was doing well when we met her as she was touring for her recent book, Beyond Belief.
2013-05-09, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
Here is a new newsletter from the latest Ideal Org promoting their success with a "packed out" Dianetics Seminar...
And here is page two of the newsletter showing the details (I omitted the other stuff in between the headline and the evidence which was two success stories).
You can see from the 2 photos that the "packed" Dianetics Seminar in an IDEAL ORG had EIGHT attendees. Now this is almost certainly more than they have ever had at a Dianetics seminar which is good for them. But the millions spent on an Ideal Org isnt proving to be very cost effective when they promote loudly that this was something to be proud of (and believe me, if there were more than those shown in the photo they would have made clear that the photos show "some" of those present).
2013-05-09, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
Tony Ortega is on fire.
He has posted 5 stories in one day. Three of which contain significant legal documents.
1&2. Laura Dieckman's response to the Church's petition to the California Supreme Court seeking to prevent her from accessing her pc folders and an EEOC lawsuit filed against a Miami chiro for forcing employees to undergo Scientology courses
Lori Hodgson and her mother, Dee McMurdie, parked their rental car, walked into Woods Fun Center, and went straight for the counter at the back, where they knew they'd find the parts department of the Austin, Texas motorcycle shop.
At the counter were two employees. Lori walked up to them and said, "Is Jeremy here?"
As soon as she did, she spotted Jeremy Leake — her son — in a side room, eating his lunch.
Jodie Fleischer at WSB-TV in Atlanta revealed today just how extensive authorities in Georgia believe the insurance fraud was at Scientology's Atlanta drug rehab center.
State and county law enforcement officials raided Narconon Georgia on April 26 and hauled away a truckload of documents and computer equipment. As the coordinated local news team of WSB Radio, WSB-TV and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution has been reporting, state regulators yanked the facility's license (pending appeal) and now are investigating Narconon for both insurance and credit card fraud.
In the affidavit for the search warrants that law enforcement officers were armed with, we can see just how extensive the false billing of doctors is suspected to be.
2012-05-09, Marty Rathbun, Moving On Up a Little Higher
The following might resonate with some who have experienced the corporate Scientology culture of David Miscavige.
Anatoly Sharansky's Final Statement in the Soviet Court
presented before being sentenced on trumped-up charges for treason and espionage, July 14, 1978
News of an incredibly graphic $2 million lawsuit by a "John Doe" masseur against John Travolta, which broke Monday, may have come as a surprise to some fans of the actor, who projects an image of a smiling heartthrob on-screen and an adoring family man off.
In the suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, an unnamed male masseur accuses the 58-year-old Pulp Fiction star of sexual assault, sexual battery, and intentional infliction of emotional distress, saying Travolta came on to him several times during a massage session at the Beverly Hills Hotel in January. And on Tuesday, a second "John Doe" masseur, represented by the same attorney, filed another $2 million sexual-assault suit against Travolta, claiming "substantial documentation and numerous witnesses regarding the substance of Travolta's actions." Travolta's lawyer has denied both men's accusations, saying of the new suit, "This second 'anonymous' claim is just as absurd and ridiculous as the first one."
For anyone who's been following Travolta's life off-screen, however, rumors of a sexual preference for men have persisted for years.
2012-05-09, Marty Rathbun, Moving On Up a Little Higher
For starters, from L Ron Hubbard 6 July 1958:
We have found that staff requires this prerequisite: a good Scientologist.
A long time ago they used to tell us what we needed was a good businessman. We've had good businessmen, and we fired them. What they used to tell us was, what we needed was a good publicity man that was really trained in publicity. And we've had them and they laid an egg, and we fired them.
2011-05-09, Marty Rathbun, Moving On Up a Little Higher
By Steve Hall, Mike Rinder and Marty Rathbun
Being the Indies most often targeted for infiltration and destruction by David Miscavige, and as our blocks have been particularly hot of late, and recognizing that between us we've identified and neutralized close to a dozen OSA operatives before they could do much damage: we thought we'd collaborate to share some tips. Tips for living a relatively happy, Independent life while continuing to advance the ball.
David Miscavige's intelligence operation network, the Office of Special Affairs (OSA) has been very sloppy of late. There is a rule of thumb that can be applied here: The number of Miscavige's gasket blowing tantrums are directly proportional to the number of bone-headed, over-the-top OSA desperation blunders. The latter are committed in vain attempts to cut down the frequency of the former. As in most matters Miscavige, his psychosis is the cause of those motivators that he runs on everybody else as his cause for going psychotic. We know, a messy scene.
2010-05-09, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
A former top insider reveals the nightmare world of violence and abuse at the highest levels of the Church of Scientology. One review states: "At home alone, a 14 year old girl takes a phone call from Scientology. This starts a quarter of a century journey of manipulation, betrayal and sexual, physical and mental abuse. This journey leads to the highest management echelon and one woman's courage to break free. A real page-turner." Mark P. Another writes: "Amy Scobee has written a book unlike any other expose of Scientology. She actually was at the top of International Management for 20 years, and oversaw the recruitment of Hollywood stars into the Church of Scientology. She witnessed the abuse of top managers by their senior, David Miscavige. She writes convincingly of the human rights violations she endured while on the Rehabilitation Project Force, a thinly disguised slave labor camp. Her book is enjoyable to insiders and laymen alike, with a glossary of terms provided, and plentiful footnotes. This is an important contribution to understanding the controversy surrounding the Church of Scientology. The glaring spotlight eventually points to Abuse at the Top." Michael H.
Now a sprightly 48, Gaiman was raised in Hampshire by his mother, a pharmacist, and a father who - read into this what you may - was one of the top men in the British wing of Scientology. In the early 1980s, he toyed with journalism and managed to get a few stories published in fantasy magazines. His dad, unconvinced that the boy was going to make a living, made a few half-hearted attempts to secure him a proper job.
THE documents at the centre of the "Dodgygate" affairs should be handed to the police for investigation, Premier Mike Rann says.
He has called on Opposition Leader Martin Hamilton-Smith to deliver them to the police.
Mr Hamilton-Smith has now apologised on four occasions for using the forged documents in Parliament to accuse the Premier and senior Labor Party officeholders of illegal fund-raising activities.
Prodata, an award-winning Danish IT company with customers such as the Royal Family and public broadcaster DR, is run by some of the most prominent forces within the Danish branch of Scientology.
Prodata has a pyramid-like structure with approximately 200 partners in 12 countries and around 2000 freelance IT professionals. The company has been voted best IT company in Denmark and been awarded financial daily Børsen's Gazelle prize.
Was it an honest mistake, a slip of the tongue? Or was it the naked truth, carelessly uttered on camera?
A top official for the Church of Scientology told a German television crew recently that church member Lisa McPherson died in a room at the Fort Harrison Hotel in Clearwater.
On its face, the statement marks a major change in Scientology's version of events surrounding McPherson's unexplained death at age 36. It came in the presence of one of the church's top lawyers, who agreed with it on camera.
In a story of international intrigue, a former senior executive of the Church of Scientology testified Saturday about a worldwide sect network involving infiltrations, conspiracies and smuggling.
Scott Mayer, 38, told Clearwater city commissioners "I have personal experiences of all of these," in the fourth day of the city's Scientology hearings, where legal consultant Michael Flynn paraded seven of his most damaging witnesses.
Commissioners heard also from a former Guardian Office worker who said she used the sect's "confessional files" during several campaigns to discredit defected Scientologists; a man who said he participated in burglaries to obtain confidential legal records to help frame defectors; and two people who said they were targets of those activities.