Breaking News Story: CRU has apparently been hacked – hundreds of files released

UPDATE: Response from CRU in interview with another website, see end of this post.

The details on this are still sketchy, we’ll probably never know what went on. But it appears that University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit has been hacked and many many files have been released by the hacker or person unknown.

UPDATED: Original image was for Met Office – corrected This image source: www.cru.uea.ac.uk

I’m currently traveling and writing this from an airport, but here is what I know so far:

An unknown person put postings on some climate skeptic websites that advertised an FTP file on a Russian FTP server, here is the message that was placed on the Air Vent today:

We feel that climate science is, in the current situation, too important to

be kept under wraps.

We hereby release a random selection of correspondence, code, and documents

The file was large, about 61 megabytes, containing hundreds of files.

It contained data, code, and emails from Phil Jones at CRU to and from many people.

I’ve seen the file, it appears to be genuine and from CRU. Others who have seen it concur- it appears genuine. There are so many files it appears unlikely that it is a hoax. The effort would be too great.

Here is some of the emails just posted at Climate Audit on this thread:

http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=7801#comments

I’ve redacted email addresses and direct phone numbers for the moment. The emails all have US public universities in the email addresses, making them public/FOIA actionable I believe.


From: Phil Jones

To: mann@vxxxxx.xxx

Subject: Fwd: John L. Daly dead

Date: Thu Jan 29 14:17:01 2004

 

From: Timo H‰meranta

To:

Subject: John L. Daly dead

Date: Thu, 29 Jan 2004 12:04:28 +0200

X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook, Build 10.0.4510

Importance: Normal

Mike,

In an odd way this is cheering news ! One other thing about the CC paper – just found

another email – is that McKittrick says it is standard practice in Econometrics journals

to give all the data and codes !! According to legal advice IPR overrides this.

Cheers

Phil

“It is with deep sadness that the Daly Family have to announce the sudden death of John

Daly.Condolences may be sent to John’s email account (daly@john-daly.com)

Reported with great sadness

Timo H‰meranta

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Timo H‰meranta, LL.M.

Moderator, Climatesceptics

Martinlaaksontie 42 B 9

01620 Vantaa

Finland, Member State of the European Union

Moderator: timohame@yxxxxx.xxx

Private: timo.hameranta@xxxxx.xx

Home page: [1]personal.inet.fi/koti/hameranta/climate.htm

Moderator of the discussion group “Sceptical Climate Science”

[2]groups.yahoo.com/group/climatesceptics

“To dwell only on horror scenarios of the future

shows only a lack of imagination”. (Kari Enqvist)

“If the facts change, I’ll change my opinion.

What do you do, Sir” (John Maynard Keynes)

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Prof. Phil Jones

Climatic Research Unit Telephone +44 (0)xxxxxx

School of Environmental Sciences Fax +44 (0) xxxxxx

University of East Anglia

Norwich Email p.jones@xxx.xx.xx

NR4 7TJ

UK

—————————————————————————-

References

1. http://personal.inet.fi/koti/hameranta/climate.htm

2. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/climatesceptics


From: Phil Jones

To: ray bradley ,mann@xxxxx.xxx, mhughes@xxxx.xxx

Subject: Diagram for WMO Statement

Date: Tue, 16 Nov 1999 13:31:15 +0000

Cc: k.briffa@xxx.xx.xx,t.osborn@xxxx.xxx

 

Dear Ray, Mike and Malcolm,

Once Tim’s got a diagram here we’ll send that either later today or

first thing tomorrow.

I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps

to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from

1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline. Mike’s series got the annual

land and marine values while the other two got April-Sept for NH land

N of 20N. The latter two are real for 1999, while the estimate for 1999

for NH combined is +0.44C wrt 61-90. The Global estimate for 1999 with

data through Oct is +0.35C cf. 0.57 for 1998.

Thanks for the comments, Ray.

Cheers

Phil

Prof. Phil Jones

Climatic Research Unit Telephone +44 (0) xxxxx

School of Environmental Sciences Fax +44 (0) xxxx

University of East Anglia

Norwich Email p.jones@xxxx.xxx

NR4 7TJ

UK

—————————————————————————-


From: Jonathan Overpeck

To: “Michael E. Mann”

Subject: letter to Senate

Date: Tue, 22 Jul 2003 16:49:31 -0700

Cc: Caspar M Ammann , Raymond Bradley , Keith Briffa , Tom Crowley , Malcolm Hughes , Phil Jones , mann@xxxxx.xxx, jto@xxxxx.xx.xxx, omichael@xxxxx.xxx, Tim Osborn , Kevin Trenberth , Tom Wigley

 

Hi all – I’m not too comfortable with this, and would rather not sign – at least not

without some real time to think it through and debate the issue. It is unprecedented and

political, and that worries me.

My vote would be that we don’t do this without a careful discussion first.

I think it would be more appropriate for the AGU or some other scientific org to do this –

e.g., in reaffirmation of the AGU statement (or whatever it’s called) on global climate

change.

Think about the next step – someone sends another letter to the Senators, then we respond,

then…

I’m not sure we want to go down this path. It would be much better for the AGU etc to do

it.

What are the precedents and outcomes of similar actions? I can imagine a special-interest

org or group doing this like all sorts of other political actions, but is it something for

scientists to do as individuals?

Just seems strange, and for that reason I’d advise against doing anything with out real

thought, and certainly a strong majority of co-authors in support.

Cheers, Peck

Dear fellow Eos co-authors,

Given the continued assault on the science of climate change by some on Capitol Hill,

Michael and I thought it would be worthwhile to send this letter to various members of

the U.S. Senate, accompanied by a copy of our Eos article.

Can we ask you to consider signing on with Michael and me (providing your preferred

title and affiliation). We would like to get this out ASAP.

Thanks in advance,

Michael M and Michael O

______________________________________________________________

Professor Michael E. Mann

Department of Environmental Sciences, Clark Hall

University of Virginia

Charlottesville, VA 22903

_______________________________________________________________________

e-mail: mann@xxxxxx.xxx Phone: (434) 924-7770 FAX: (434) xxx-xxxxx

http://www.evsc.virginia.edu/faculty/people/mann.shtml

Attachment converted: Macintosh HD:EOS.senate letter-final.doc (WDBN/MSWD) (00055FCF)

Jonathan T. Overpeck

Director, Institute for the Study of Planet Earth

Professor, Department of Geosciences

Mail and Fedex Address:

Institute for the Study of Planet Earth

715 N. Park Ave. 2nd Floor

University of Arizona

Tucson, AZ 85721

direct tel: +xxxx

fax: +1 520 792-8795

http://www.geo.arizona.edu/Faculty_Pages/Overpeck.J.html http://www.ispe.arizona.edu/


It appears that the proverbial Climate Science Cat is out of the bag.

 

Developing story – more later

UPDATE1: Steve McIntyre posted this on Climate Audit, I used a screen cap rtaher than direct link becuase CA is overloaded and slow at the moment.

UPDATE2: Response from CRU h/t to WUWT reader “Nev”

http://briefingroom.typepad.com/the_briefing_room/2009/11/hadleycru-says-leaked-data-is-real.html

The director of Britain’s leading Climate Research Unit, Phil Jones, has told Investigate magazine’s TGIF Edition tonight that his organization has been hacked, and the data flying all over the internet appears to be genuine.

In an exclusive interview, Jones told TGIF, “It was a hacker. We were aware of this about three or four days ago that someone had hacked into our system and taken and copied loads of data files and emails.”

“Have you alerted police”

“Not yet. We were not aware of what had been taken.”

Jones says he was first tipped off to the security breach by colleagues at the website RealClimate.

“Real Climate were given information, but took it down off their site and told me they would send it across to me. They didn’t do that. I only found out it had been released five minutes ago.”

TGIF asked Jones about the controversial email discussing “hiding the decline”, and Jones explained what he was trying to say….

UPDATE3: McIntyre has posted an article by Jean S at climateaudit.org which is terribly overloaded. We have mirrored it.

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/11/20/mikes-nature-trick/


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Roger Knights

It appears that the proverbial Climate Science Cat is out of the bag….
… and into the box.

Ray

I think the hackers just gave them the perfect occasion to “purge” their system of other inconvenient data… “The hackers made lots of damage in our system and many important data files have been erased”… of course they will forget that there have backups, or maybe those are already “reused!?!
On another note, they do have a very nice building but it must be very expensive to heat in winter, and produce lots of CO2.

George Patch

WOW! That’s all I can say right now

PaulH

Be careful here. It is not unusual for files released by hackers to contain all kinds of nasty stuff, from viruses and worms to simple worthless junk. I’m not saying that it *is* bad, just tread carefully with this stuff.

Surely they were not dumb enough to actually leave this series of what looks like outright complicity to obscure laying around where the janitor could read it?

Finally. Finally. Finally.
“I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.”

wws

Awww, now that’s a shame.
Some people are going to be swallowing their tongues over this.

Stephen Brown

I agree with the sentiment expressed above about blanking e-mail addresses for safety’s sake.
Other than that all I can say is “Oooooohh!!!!! that’s an almightily HUGE bollock which has just been dropped!!”
The lid is coming off a rather nasty can of worms here. I wonder if Mr. Jones will be permitted to retain his publicly funded position if the rest of these revelations are as startling as the meagre few released above?
Anticipation mounts!

Henry chance

Shazzsam!!!
There is nothing more dangerous than leaking out temperature numbers to humans. \
There must have been thousands of hours invested in tweaking, adjusting and smoothing actual numbers to make them look better.
This is bigger than the story about the black Friday Walmart specials ad being release online 8 days early.

joe

“I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps
to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from
1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.”
Holy crap, if that’s what it sounds like there a smoking gun.

Telboy

Smoking gun? More like a blazing armoury!

My, my, my. The emails may be more important than the data.

crosspatch

I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps
to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from
1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.

Huh?

Svart

“Once Tim’s got a diagram here we’ll send that either later today or
first thing tomorrow.
I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps
to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from
1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.”
Does this say what I think it says?

chillybean

Where can I get the other 60 megs
Link please

Peter West

BE CAREFUL!!!!! The validity of this needs to be very carefully checked before ANY claims are made.

Eric (skeptic)

This looks way over the top to me. There’s lots of mundane content that might be real, but the discussions of how to fake the data (“hide the decline”) are much less nuanced then one would expect considering all of their public postings. They have very elaborate ways of creating hockey sticks and they would use their elaborate terminology in their personal correspondence.

Brent Matich

What decline?
Brent in Calgary

Nerton M

hmm.. strange.. it isn’t aprils fools day, is it? 😀

chillybean

Roger Knights (13:37:07) :
“It appears that the proverbial Climate Science Cat is out of the bag….”
… and into the box.
And into the river maybe?

Greg S

Probably still a crime to have hacked into CRU’s systems, however haven’t there been some judicial findings in the UK recently where the severity of the world’s climate change was used to justify the actions and the activist was released.
Maybe uncovering an alleged fraud of these proportions would come under the same category?

crosspatch

Well, as it apparently contains correspondence with people such as SteveM, it should be rather quickly known. But it looks like someone got a copy of someone’s mail spool. Who knows what might have been deleted.

“And, you get to see somebody with the name of phil jones say that he would rather destroy the CRU data than release it to McIntyre.”
Breathtaking.

Steve Geiger

I would tread very carefully…and view these with AT LEAST as much skepticism as the ‘normal’ stuff these authors publish.
If authentic…one only wonders who gets the tv/books rights for this stuff?

Ashtoreth

Has anyone thought of passing the links for this to some of the handful of MS journos who are skeptics? They might find it very interesting….
Also, is any of this stuff data that was stated to be no longer available? If that was (its from memory, I’m not sure) as a result of a FOI request in the UK, I believe lying about it is a criminal offence…

Mark Wagner

yep. if you want to keep something secret, never ever ever never ever write it down, say it over the phone, put it in an email, put it in a voicemail, text message or any other electronic format. this stuff just doesn’t go away (even if you delete it).
oops.

Scott

Eric (skeptic) (14:04:50) :
Keep in mind that email was from 1999. Things may be a lot more nuanced now b/c they’ve been forced in that direction, but back then they pretty much had free reign.

Freezedried

Beware Hitlers diary.

Roger Knights

“Trick” might not be as damning as it seems. He might have used the word as an informal synonym for “technique,” in the same way that programmers will speak of “a neat hack,” meaning technique, not reprehensible kludge–although that’s what it sounds like to an outsider.
If the word “trick” can be found used as a synonym for technique in other e-mails, this defense could be made to look credible.
Still, on the surface, it does look like something in the vein of, “We’ve got to get rid of the MWP.”

Roger Knights

PS: This is a plot-twist so fantastic it couldn’t have been used in Michael Crichton’s Fear. The truth is stranger than fiction.

SJones

Maybe the Met’s new sooper-dooper supercomputer has done a HAL on them.

Marian

One Slim Possiblity.
Question. Did this original data could have come from maybe a disgruntled individual to do with The Hadley Centre and sick of all the fraud and falsifications. To Cover His or Her tracks. Then dumped the data on a Russian hacker FTP. So to get the info out?

Roger Knights

PPS: “Breaking” has another connotation.

joshua corning

Has anyone thought of passing the links for this to some of the handful of MS journos who are skeptics?
How about actually providing link. None of the sites or links i have gone to have the file.
I think Steve Mosher is playing a joke on us.
Link or it did not happen.

crosspatch

For some reason it appears that the link is being kept hidden and nobody is posting a link to a copy of the file. So we have to take some people’s word for what is going on and can’t independently verify what is being said. So … I am going to grab a couple of grains of salt until I can read it for myself.

David
John Anderson

*** start quote***
“It is with deep sadness that the Daly Family have to announce the sudden death of John
Daly.Condolences may be sent to John’s email account (daly@john-daly.com)”
Mike,
In an odd way this is cheering news ! One other thing about the CC paper – just found
another email – is that McKittrick says it is standard practice in Econometrics journals
to give all the data and codes !! According to legal advice IPR overrides this.
Cheers
Phil
*** end quote ***
[snip]

joe

for Keith’s to hide the decline.
just remember we are assuming what this is referring to. We *could* be wrong, but I doubt it.

Roger Knights

“Here is some of the emails just posted at Climate Audit on this thread:”
The relevant material starts at comment #101.

leftymartin

Easy does it folks, if some things sound too good to be true, they probably are…….

Robinson

“I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.”

This doesn’t ring true to me. I absolutely don’t believe it. It’s entirely possible an archive was accessed, yes, but the subsequent correspondence could have been spiked before it was released. I don’t want to believe Scientists actually do things like this (above). I’m not a conspiracy theorist you see. I prefer the cock-up theory, as Steve McIntyre admirably demonstrates time after time.

Konrad

The day started well with News.com.au pulling an online story about 6 degree temperature rises and methane exploding from the ocean, but this has made my day! I wonder if the dog will cough up all the missing homework?

Ben D

WWOWWZZA! soon the CYA begins

“Opens popcorn.”

joshua corning

http://ftp.tomcity.ru/incoming/free/FOI2009.zip
never mind Jean S provided a link at The Blackboard

aaah the whole AGW house of cards continues to collapse – and just in time for Copenhagen!

wws

cockup and conspiracy are not mutually exclusive.

peter_dtm

sceptics …
be exceedingly sceptical !
deniers…
deny it’s real – until you have the same level of proof you demand from the alarmists
get the forensics done
and then ……

Rereke Whakaaro

Eric (skeptic) (14:04:50) :
quote
This looks way over the top to me. There’s lots of mundane content that might be real, but the discussions of how to fake the data (“hide the decline”) are much less nuanced then one would expect considering all of their public postings. /quote
I agree, it looks as though this “intelligence” has been “enhanced”. They would not “hide the decline”, they would “adjust the trend” – those in the know would understand which direction the adjustment would take. There would be no need to spell it out.
This has the smell of misinformation to me. It is all too convenient and laid-out on a plate.
Most cyber attacks are opportunistic and against soft targets. I doubt that CRU has gaping holes in their security systems, precisely because they fear the risk of attack from people wanting access their data. If the base information is real, then it would be a sophisticated attack. But for what purpose?
The leak/hack is convenient given the timing with Copenhagen. The real question is, “Who would gain by putting this in the public arena at this time?”

Mr Green Genes

Freezedried (14:10:55) :
Beware Hitlers diary.

I have to second this note of caution. There’s information, misinformation, disinformation, misdis… well you get the idea.
We in the UK are well aware that the current government aren’t too fussy about how they spin and smear so just remember that (unless they find a particularly good reason for suspending democracy) there will be a general election next year and the ruling Labour Party are currently odds on to lose heavily.