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02.11.15

The EPO’s Digital War (Censorship) Against Staff Web Site

Posted in Europe, Patents at 8:50 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Benoit Battistelli

Summary: The EPO’s management has been blacklisting dissent and increasingly relying on censorship as means of eliminating opposing voices

A LOT has been happening in the EPO regime in recent weeks, culminating in resignations or firings from one side and protests from the other (up to a third of all staff), resulting in an assault on the press (paid 'articles') from one side and DDOS attacks on the other. There is a war between staff and the crooked managers who attack the staff’s rights, break the rules, and operate a tyranny that betrays principles of scope and even, based on numerous criteria, violates EU law.

Based on an E-mail from the webhost of SUEPO, the attacks on their site is quite serious. Here are some enumerable details:

Subject: Server blocked due to DoS attack

thank you for your request.

The attack appears to be over. We were able to unblock your IP-Addresses.

Your server should be reachable again.
Detailed information about the attack:
Type UDP Packetflood
Traffic: 3,5G with 8MPacket/s
Random external IP Sources
Destination 87.106.183.86 Port 80,5190
Start-Date 2015-02-05 05:18:41+0100

In simple terms, there is no denying that this was a DDOS attack. We would love to know the outcome of the investigation as we too came under heavy DDOS attacks, lasting months (keeping my wife and I awake at night and causing serious financial damage), ever since we started criticising EPO management. We can’t tell if there is a correlation between these attacks (SUEPO and us), but if there is a correlation between those two, then we can deduce something about the motivation (or source).

A source told us that an investigation is underway, citing SUEPO as stating: “By flooding our server with external requests in this manner the attackers rendered it unavailable. As soon as our server was reachable again, the attackers attempted an SSH brute-force attack to take control of the server.

“Such attacks constitute a violation of law and SUEPO has filed criminal charges against unknown and will cooperate with the German and Dutch authorities, who are now investigating the matter.”

Our source further indicated that there had been other oppressive measures against SUEPO, so the above would not be exactly unprecedented. To quote further:

What happened to SUEPO until now?

Communication with our members has become extremely difficult. In particular, we cannot reach our members on their EPO email address because of the measures applied by the Office since 2013, such as:

- The domain name suepo.org is blacklisted in the email server of the EPO since 2013. A sender from @suepo.org cannot reach a recipient @epo.org

- Many colleagues have reported that external emails containing the word “SUEPO” in the subject line or body do not reach a recipient @epo.org. Despite several requests for clarification, the administration has remained silent on the matter.

What next?

Your committee will strive to maintain its communication means with staff and to continue to inform them promptly of what is really happening in the Office. We would like to encourage you to provide your local SUEPO Committee with your private email address if you haven’t done it yet. Given the current context, we think it makes sense.

This in its own right serves to show that the EPO already engages in digital war against SUEPO. It’s a war of censorship. Would the EPO go as far we paying crackers? That’s an important question. Some people deem DDOS attacks “just a sit-in/protest”. Such people rarely (if ever) had to respond to an actual DDOS attack; these can persist for weeks or months.

“Some people deem DDOS attacks “just a sit-in/protest”.”“In the meantime,” said our source, “SUEPO has issued the statement” (above).

“Some people,” our source added, “are currently trying to investigate whether there is any similarity between the recent cyberattacks on the server of the Croatian web portal dnevno.hr.

“An open question here is whether or not EPO funds are being used to finance these attacks.”

As we noted earlier today, Željko Topić is alleged to have covered up for his predecessor/s. Is the EPO now covering up its own misconduct, by covert, subversive or aggressive means also? If so, Topić may have plenty of “work experience” to offer the EPO after all.

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