When you think about “The End of the World” most people imagine a nuclear holocaust. But when you think about it nuclear weapons are (except for fallout) still a local event. A real apocalypse might look more like Y2K than a bomb blast.

From what we know the NSA has back door access into Apple, Microsoft, and Google. What kind of access we don’t know, but let us assume it is similar to what they did about 7 years ago to AT&T. They had a secret room at Fulsom St. in San Francisco and the AT&T engineers had no control and no access to a room full of NSA equipment that had direct access to everything AT&T could do.

Microsoft is the source of the operating system for Windows and Windows cell phones. Apple controls the OS for Macs, iPhones, and iPads. Google controls the Chrome OS, Chrome Browser, and Android cell phones. The companies regularly push operating system upgrades and security updates to users on a regular basis.

Imagine however that the NSA has access to these updates at the source and has the ability to alter these update in order to install some sort of spyware on your phone, tablet, or computer. The software could turn on your camera or microphone remotely, read all your private data, or erase everything and brick your phone or computer.

Scary huh? Not yet!

Now – suppose that someone hacks the NSA computer and they create something similar to the Stuxnet virus (the one that attacked the Iranian nuclear program by destroying their centrifuges) and supposed they pushed this virus out to all Microsoft, Apple, and Google controlled devices. And the virus just sat there for months or years waiting to activate. No one would know because it would be part of the operating system and it would be installed from trusted sources.

Then – all of a sudden it happens and the virus wakes up on all these computers at the same time. The first thing it does it go out and find the backups and delete everything. Then it does a security wipe on all the hard drives. It then reflashes the boot roms and then it turns off the CPU fan and goes into a loop generating as much heat as possible until the processor burns up.

Within hours 25 to 60 percent of the computers on the planet are burned up and their drives and backups are wiped clean. The Internet goes down completely. The phone systems go down. Cell systems go down. And the power grid fails. The lights go off. The air conditioning goes off. No gas, no food, no water. Within a week your either a cannibal, or a cannibal is eating your brains.

And who could do such a thing? Some 15 year old genius hacker who is being picked on a school and is ready to get revenge on the world.

Snowden just proved that the NSA computers aren’t secure. Anything the NSA can do anyone who hacks the NSA can do. The NSA has created a single point of failure where a pissed off 15 year old or a crazy terrorist group could take out civilization as we know it.

Ahhh – if only I were 15 years old again. I could RULE THE WORLD!


  1. Comanche says:

    Gee Brain, What do you want to do tonight? Same thing we do every night Pinky: Try to take over the world!

  2. Dallas says:

    Oh lord. Is this the new Obama outrage for the Teapublicans?

  3. McCullough says:

    Reality bytes, doesn’t it.

  4. Admfubar says:

    Richard Stallman dosent sound crazy now huh?

  5. deegee says:

    Good grief /facepalm
    You really need to stop watching movies.

    “The software could turn on your camera or microphone remotely, read all your private data, or erase everything and brick your phone or computer.”

    And NO ONE with technical savvy notices this!?!?

    “the virus wakes up on all these computers at the same time”

    What about the half of the world that is in night time and a large number of those people have their computers turned off. A virus cannot turn on a computer.

    “The first thing it does… It then reflashes the boot roms…”

    ROFL so much stupid my head hurts.
    This blog post is completely in the realm of fantasy.

    “From what we know the NSA has back door access into Apple, Microsoft, and Google.”
    “The Internet goes down completely.”

    uh… my Internet server is on Linux.
    So is a large percentage of the rest of the Internet.
    The worldwide power grid is not ran by some Dell Windows PC connected to the Internet. Neither is the worldwide natural gas. Or the Water.


    • Captain Obvious says:

      Thank you. Unix still rules and Linux is huge on the net. Windows server use is actually dropping. Windows is big inside corporations, not in the rest of the world.

      As for infrastructure, you’re looking at old reliable shit and specialized OS’s.

    • The Monster's Lawyer says:

      agree dee.
      That’s not to say the NSA doesn’t try it’s damnedest for this but like you pointed out, there are some things that are just beyond even the spooks.
      add my /gheesh to your /facepalm

    • John says:

      “uh… my Internet server is on Linux”

      And my internet server can NEVER be hacked!!! Thats rich.


      • deegee says:

        Did I say that? No I didn’t.
        The article stated that the NSA has backdoors into Microsoft, Apple, Google.
        It did not mention Linux.

    • LibertyLover says:

      And NO ONE with technical savvy notices this!?!?

      Who is monitoring their phone at night?

      A virus cannot turn on a computer.

      HP servers have the ability to be turned on via an internet connection. They can be cold, dead iron and remotely started up. I have customers using them. Very handy.

      The worldwide power grid is not ran by some Dell Windows PC connected to the Internet. Neither is the worldwide natural gas. Or the Water.

      I hate to say this, but you couldn’t be more wrong. 100% of our customers, world wide, use either Dell or HP for monitoring and supervisory control of their SCADA systems (oil and gas pipelines, power generating, gas compression, water/wastewater, etc.). You can wreak havoc if you had access to these servers. From them, you can download whatever you want to the dedicated computers running the actual hardware — that includes reflashing the firmware. We do it quite often, on a periodic basic, when new versions come out.

      • deegee says:

        “HP servers have the ability to be turned on via an internet connection.”

        Sure, if you want to cherry pick to try to disprove my post.
        There are many PCs with features such as “Wake on LAN”, but in the vast majority of installations these features are NOT enabled.

        “I hate to say this, but you couldn’t be more wrong.”

        Looks like my point went right over your head.

        And I’m not wrong. Again, if you want to cherry pick you will find some examples. I also know of numerous controller systems that do not have Internet access, WoL, etc.

        The main point is, the original blog post is pure fantasy.

        • LibertyLover says:

          My company interfaces with over 30% of the O/G companies in the world, either directly or through intermediaries. And all of them are either Dell or HP. And they all, without fail, run Windows.

          Is 30% considered cherry picking?

          We’re more vulnerable than you think we are.

  6. bobbo, we think with words and flower with ideas says:

    Golly–Marc SAID: “IMAGINE IF.”

    And being completely technically incompetent…. I did.


    To be comfortable in your overstuffed comfy chairs about the security of your status quo world is…….. a lack of imagination.

    Ha, ha.

  7. Uncle Patso says:

    That’s an awful lot of “what if”s.

    Reminds me of the old Saturday Night Live bit, “What if Spartacus had a Piper Cub?”

  8. deowll says:

    Pakastan could launch and EMP attack off our east coast and put Boston/New York/ Washington out of business for a few years even if the only people that died were medical emergencies.

    • msbpodcast says:

      If someone really wanted to damage the US, all it would take is a big enough bomb aimed at the Las Palma volcano in the Azores causing a massive landslide.

      When that sucker finally goes, the tsunami will take out all of the land lying below 100 feet all along the eastern seaboard, as well as most of the UK, te seacoasts of France, Spain, Portugal and so on.

      • ± says:

        When that big slump finally occurs, 40,000,000 Americans will get to contemplate their inexorable, imminent death for 8 hours before it happens. My typical environs are 300+ feet above see level, but sometimes I or family members are in NJ. I’ve told them to go to nearest airport and pay $10,000 for a helicopter ride NOW back to PA when they hear about the slump on the news. Most people won’t believe the 10 foot swell traveling at 300 miles per hour towards our coastline will be very important so the helicopter pilot’s family may die while he saves yours.

  9. MarioWario says:

    Right now I sit in Europe on a computer with an intel i7 CPU that can be killed remotely (vPro – Thank You). My use of Apple’s iCloud is close to zero, Gdrive is partly encrypted with Boxcryptor and Dropbox is still in use (at the moment). Skydrive, Skype and MS Office are now legacy products that I don’t use anymore.

    The NSA has already damaged the credibility of: INTEL, CISCO, IBM, MOTOROLA, MICROSOFT, APPLE, NVIDIA, ADOBE, ORACLE, GOOGLE and many more US businesses – until the situation doesn’t change I buy Japanese, Korean, German, British, Russian and Chinese Services Hard- & Software – promote Open Source Software instead of intransparent solutions. I am even thinking about rolling back to Snow Leopard (to the days Apple wasn’t compromised).

  10. So What? says:

    As y2k was a non-event you might pick a better apocalypse.

  11. noname says:

    Obama and company wonder why other world governments and companies don’t trust American products.

    America thinks it can hide its crimes behind its boney, accusing finger!

    You want to know what America is really doing. Just look at what America accuses other countries of doing, and you can bet America was doing it first!

    America is such a world class transparent hypocrite!

    • soundwash says:

      lol.. like my father always says:

      “one finger pointing forward has three
      fingers pointing back”


  12. sargasso_c says:

    I really do think it is time to up the medication.

  13. orion3014 says:

    Put all this spec right along side the total nuke warfare we’ve been promised since the late 50’s…btw Dell’s have DRAC /Dell Remote Access Control, which will let you remote start/stop / reboot, but it only works if you have access via internet , and , of course, power on site… clearskies!

  14. soundwash says:

    Hey Marc,

    fwiw, if i recall, the FBI added “backdoor” access
    and the ability to (remotely) turn a cell phone and
    act as a listening device as part of of the 1996 Telecommunications Act.


  15. Grey Bird says:

    So… None of the many many hackers trying to break into Windows find this with constant searching? Sorry, I don’t buy that. NSA may have really good hacking people, but there are way more independent hackers out there digging through Windows, just looking for any way to bring it under their control that would have found this.

  16. Hardy Harr says:

    Gee, I thought the vast majority of computers were Windoze zombie boxes running Inbreed Exploiter with so many toolbars you couldn’t see the page you were on. Of course, I’m just going by a sample of the few thousand computers I’ve been called out to “fix”.

    And, well, that makes a software apocalypse sound pretty GOOD, actually.

  17. Glenn E. says:

    Obviously the US govt (aka NSA, CIA, FBI, DOD, ETC) is, and always has been, willing to sacrifice the nation’s economic security. In its quest to protect the political security. IOW, those in power, fear even the smallest loss, due to some political unrest or embarrassment. While, just like during the Great Depression Era, the wealth of the wealthiest, are well protected. So they’re not so worried about a cyber crash, effecting the rest of us. Just so long as the existing Status Quo is always preserved. It’s not the security of the nation, that they’re protecting. But rather the security of the nation’s elite. And their Operating Software very likely isn’t bugged with backdoors.


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