Just three minutes before Donald Trump left office, a “shadowy” company called Global Resource Systems LLC received control of tens of millions of Pentagon-owned Internet Protocol (IP) addresses which were previously dormant.
The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) made this mysterious transfer, which now means the number of DOD-owned IP addresses (controlled by Global Resource Systems) has increased from 56 million to 175 million.
Doug Madory, the director of internet analysis at the network operating company Kentik, has conducted an investigation into this strange occurrence.
He told the press:
“It is massive. That is the biggest thing in the history of the internet.”
To get an idea as to the scale of this operation these IP addresses amount to one twenty-fifth of the number (and more than twice those) previously being controlled by the Pentagon.
Theories have quickly emerged as to why such an obscure company [as Global Resource Systems] has been given so much control over the Pentagon owned internet IP addresses.
In an article The Washington Post asked:
Did someone at the Defense Department sell off part of the military’s vast collection of sought-after IP addresses as Trump left office?
Has the Pentagon finally acted on demands to unload the billions of dollars’ worth of IP address space the military has been sitting on, largely unused, for decades?
Pentagon: Pilot Effort to ‘Prevent Unauthorised Use’
The Pentagon’s response has left more questions than answers.
This secretive project is ultimately being run by the Pentagon’s Defense Digital Service (DDS).
DDS was launched in 2015 to help the DOD “solve high-impact challenges” via “private-sector tools, approaches and talent.”
Here’s what DDS director Brett Goldstein had to say about this dark-state project:
“DDS was created to bring in the best and brightest, to help advance the mission to solve some of our hardest technical problems, and to make sure technology doesn’t get in the way of our mission: national defense.
I think one of the things we’ve learned in government is that technology needs to enable the mission.
The pilot project intends to assess, evaluate and prevent unauthorised use of DOD IP address space, identify potential vulnerabilities as part of efforts to defend against cyber-intrusions by global adversaries, who are consistently infiltrating U.S. networks, sometimes operating from unused internet address blocks.”
Cybersecurity experts have suggested that the IP addresses may be honeypot traps which are intentionally made vulnerable in order to attract hackers
Some have also suggested this is a dark-state operation in which the US government has set up software and servers in order to monitor whatever the security services deem to be suspicious activities.
According to Doug Madory:
“I interpret this to mean that the objectives of this effort are twofold.
First, to announce this address space to scare off any would-be squatters,
Secondly, to collect a massive amount of background internet traffic for threat intelligence.”
“Following the increase, AS8003 [the entity announcing the DOD’s internet space] became, far and away, the largest AS in the history of the internet as measured by originated IPv4 space.
By comparison, AS8003 now announces 61 million more IP addresses than the now-second biggest AS in the world, China Telecom, and over 100 million more addresses than Comcast, the largest residential internet provider in the U.S.
While yesterday’s statement from the DoD answers some questions, much remains a mystery. Why did the DoD not just announce this address space themselves instead of directing an outside entity to use the AS of a long dormant email marketing firm?
Why did it come to life in the final moments of the previous administration?”
Global Resource Systems has ties to DARPA and Internet Surveillance
Not much is known about Global Resource Systems, the company the Pentagon has called upon to manage it’s IP address portfolio. It has no record of government contracts.
The company has an address in Plantation, Florida, is incorporated in Delaware and was registered by a Beverly Hills lawyer.
Raymond Saulino is the only name associated with the company.
The company, Global Resource Systems, was established by a Beverly Hills attorney, and now resides in a shared workspace above a Florida bank.
The company did not return phone calls or emails from The Associated Press. It has no web presence, though it has the domain grscorp.com.
Its name doesn’t appear on the directory of its Plantation, Florida, domicile, and a receptionist drew a blank when an AP reporter asked for a company representative at the office earlier this month. She found its name on a tenant list and suggested trying email.
Records show the company has not obtained a business license in Plantation.
Incorporated in Delaware and registered by a Beverly Hills lawyer, Global Resource Systems LLC now manages more internet space than China Telecom, AT&T or Comcast. – Associated Press
Raymond Saulino and Packet Forensics
There’s a big HOWEVER here. Raymond Saulino is also linked to Packet Forensics, which is a cybersecurity/internet surveillance equipment company.
Over the past decade this company has had nearly $40 million in publicly disclosed federal contracts, with the FBI and the Pentagon’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency [DARPA] among its clientele.
In 2011, Packet Forensics and Saulino were featured in a Wired story because the company was selling an appliance to government agencies and law enforcement which allowed them to spy on people’s web browsing using forged security certificates.
According to its website Packet Forensics continues to sell ‘lawful intercept’ equipment.
One of their current contracts is with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (Darpa) and is used for ‘harnessing autonomy for countering cyber-adversary systems’.
The contract description says it is investigating technologies for conducting safe, non-disruptive and effective active defence operations in cyberspace.
In 2019 this contract clearly stated that the program would,
‘Investigate the feasibility of creating safe and reliable autonomous software agencies that can effectively counter malicious botnet implants and similar large-scale malware.’
To add even more confusion to the equation, 10 years ago a company with the exact same name and address as Global Resource Systems was accused of sending massive amounts of email spam before it was shut down.
Internet fraud researcher Ron Guilmette, who sued Global Resource Systems back in 2006 for unfair business practices, told the Associated Press:
“It’s deeply suspicious … If they wanted to be more serious about hiding this they could have not used Ray Saulino and this suspicious name.”
How the is this working….
To understand how the American government may be interfering with internet communications it is important to understand the protocols and mechanisms they may be using.
So. What exactly is an IP address?
Essentially an Internet Protocol address (IP address) is a numerical label assigned to each device connected to a computer network that uses the Internet Protocol for communication.
An IP address serves two main functions:
1) Host or network interface identification.
2) Location addressing.
IP addresses are assigned to a host either dynamically as they join the network, or persistently by configuration of the host hardware or software. Example – a Wi-Fi router.
Persistent configuration is also known as using a static IP address.
In contrast, when a computer’s IP address is assigned each time it restarts, this is known as using a dynamic IP address.
Dynamic IP addresses are assigned by network using Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP). DHCP is the most frequently used technology for assigning addresses.
A host may use geolocation software to deduce the geographic position of its communicating peer. Example. A cell phone.
The basic protocol for sending data over the Internet network and many other computer networks is the Internet Protocol (IP). The protocol specifies that each IP packet must have a header which contains (among other things) the IP address of the sender of the packet.
The source IP address is normally the address that the packet was sent from, but the sender’s address in the header can be altered, so that to the recipient it appears that the packet came from another source.
In computer networking, IP address spoofing or IP spoofing is the creation of Internet Protocol (IP) packets with a false source IP address, for the purpose of impersonating another computing system.
Simple put, the Pentagon’s Defense Digital Service (DDS) or the Department of Defence need to disguise the fact that they are providing fake IP addresses direct to American or international users.
What better way to do this than to factor everything out to private contractors. After all this would give them deniability in the event of any public scrutiny.
Q: Assuming neither the DDS or the DoD have any financial interest in selling IP addresses then why would they want own all this internet estate in the first place?
(And yes, you ignore what the DDS director Brett Goldstein claimed this dark-state project is all about.)
A: To enable them to track the whereabouts of those they have placed on the Main Core data base perhaps?
Is this the reason the DDS have transferred ALL these IP addresses to an unknown company called – Global Resource Systems LLC. No internet history, nothing you can check on, nothing for you to worry about.
Well, ‘nothing to worry about’ until you’ve discovered the link between Global Resources, Raymond Saulino and Packet Forensics whose federal clients include both the FBI and the Pentagon’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency [DARPA].
Social media platforms, Facebook and Twitter also owe their existence to Darpa.
To learn more about how these platforms are being used by the US gov to spy on citizens go –> here
In the meantime here’s a hilarious observation by Joeybtooz of the CEO of Twitter.
Special thanks to:
Tampa Bay Times