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Are Wikileaks Servers In a Nuclear Bunker?

CmdrTaco posted more than 6 years ago | from the why-do-i-doubt-that dept.

Censorship 112

An anonymous reader writes "The Guardian has a two page spread on the background of some of the Wikileaks people, the Wikileaks scheme for "an open-source democratic intelligence agency" and the possible location of its secret servers — an abandoned US nuclear weapons base at Greenham Common and a radar station in Kent. "The Kent bunker is deep underground and supposed to survive 30 days after a nuclear strike.""

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112 comments

Purpose ? (5, Insightful)

Davemania (580154) | more than 6 years ago | (#22526370)

Whats the point of placing the server in a nuclear bunker when you can just snip the cable (both metaphorically and physically) to limit the access.

Nuclear bunkers obsolete (4, Interesting)

tjstork (137384) | more than 6 years ago | (#22526480)

I thought all the nuclear bunkers were built to survive a conventional a-bomb attack in an era where the CEP was so high that a miss was likely. Secrecy was a part of it too. The idea was to not get hit at all, survive a near miss from a small bomb in case they did find you. But, once the H-Bombs came of age, all of that was made obsolete. I mean, some of the USA test h-bomb shots in the pacific blew entire islands off of the map, and the Russians actually built much larger h-bombs that that.

The whole bunker thing is a joke.

Re:Nuclear bunkers obsolete (3, Interesting)

mk_is_here (912747) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526600)

But practically it was not H-bombs which defeat the bunkers, it's the shaped charge and nowadays kinetic penetrators.
It's cheaper, easier to handle, and more efficient. No generals wish to use H-bomb against immobile tanks and personnel inside a bunker.

Re:Nuclear bunkers obsolete (1)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527094)

Cheyenne Mountain [wikipedia.org] is supposed to be able to withstand a "multi-megaton blast".. seems like being buried under a mountain of rock and steel is probably the safest you're going to get, if you get hit at all.

Re:Nuclear bunkers obsolete (4, Interesting)

Marillion (33728) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527242)

While much of that is true, it's also true that much of the durability of Cheyenne Mountain is predicated on the statistical probability that a missile aimed at the mountain would actually hit the mountain. I believe they calculated a 80% chance that a missile would miss the target by far enough that the complex would be able still serve it's mission - launch a retaliatory strike against those who attacked. All that it served was to provide enough of a threat that the Soviet Union would think twice before launching a first strike.

No... (2, Funny)

Urger (817972) | more than 6 years ago | (#22531926)

We've been over this already people... Cheyenne Mountain is there to house the Stargate.

Re:Nuclear bunkers obsolete (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22533172)

If the Russions would have struck, the first two things they'd have taken out were Cheyenne Mountain and the Pentagon.

The best location for a command center would be at area 51, hiding in plain sight under a ludicrous UFO cover nobody would waste a bomb on, and far enough out of the way to avoid being hit by one that misses the city it's targeted at.

So that's where I think the real center is.

Re:Nuclear bunkers obsolete (1)

tubapro12 (896596) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527832)

Tsar Bomba, Russia's 50 Megaton H bomb. For comparison purposes, the Tunguska Event explosion wasn't that high, as the highest estimates say about 30 tons, others (more believable) put it at about half that.

Re:Nuclear bunkers obsolete (1)

Oktober Sunset (838224) | more than 5 years ago | (#22529914)

The Tsar Bomb was a white elephant, it had no practical purpose as it didn't fit onto any missiles.

Re:Nuclear bunkers obsolete (1)

Azoth's Revenge (82601) | more than 6 years ago | (#22532668)

Actually the Tsar Bomb's purpose and it's deployment was to show that the Soviet Union could design a bomb with no upper limit, and to push the US into a defacto above ground test ban. Of course one could say the same thing about China and their recent satellite shot.

Re:Nuclear bunkers obsolete (5, Insightful)

Fweeky (41046) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528104)

Bunkers are handy against EMP's too. You also generally get good overall physical security with a bunker, and data centers built in them tend to follow through with more practical aspects of security, like escorts instead of just letting you find your own way, as is common in most.

Bunkers also make for a relatively inexpensive readymade secure location, generally with good immortal power and HVAC. People don't put data centers in bunkers because of zomg sekure, they do it because it's often more practical than building your own from scratch.

Re:Nuclear bunkers obsolete (1)

gadget junkie (618542) | more than 5 years ago | (#22530032)

Bunkers are handy against EMP's too. You also generally get good overall physical security with a bunker, and data centers built in them tend to follow through with more practical aspects of security, like escorts instead of just letting you find your own way, as is common in most. Bunkers also make for a relatively inexpensive readymade secure location, generally with good immortal power and HVAC. People don't put data centers in bunkers because of zomg sekure, they do it because it's often more practical than building your own from scratch.

Besides, my Chateau Laffite wine ages marvelously in that environment.....

Re:Nuclear bunkers obsolete (1)

nospam007 (722110) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528386)

The whole bunker thing is a joke.

But I guess the security is better than in Chicago where some bums break in several times a year to steal some harddrives.

Re:Nuclear bunkers obsolete (3, Informative)

Sperbels (1008585) | more than 5 years ago | (#22529632)

Any shelter you make is going to have a hard time withstanding a direct hit. That's just not the point. You have blast shelters and you have fallout shelters. Blast shelters are designed to withstand some blast damage. The further you are from ground zero the less blast damage you will take. That's where the blast shelter shines. You might be in an area close enough to the ground zero where you would otherwise be killed by the pressure and heat and flying debris, but if you're in a blast shelter you have a much better chance of surviving.

The blast damage alone isn't the only killer. Fallout shelters are designed to protect the blast survivors from the subsequent radiation and provide them with enough food and water until they have to leave.

These things will increase survivability even with a large h-bomb attack. While the chances of this happening have gone down since the Soviet collapse, the shelters themselves are far from obsolete. The wide spread notion that we're all dead in the event of a large scale nuclear exchange is simply not true.

And despite the frequent criticism of the old duck and cover movies, this is still the best thing to do if you see bright flash on the horizon. It's far better than standing there mouth agape looking stupid when the blast wave hits.

Re:Nuclear bunkers obsolete (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22532492)

Agree completely- these things are about herd survival, for lack of a better term. It's about protecting the marginal cases. Goddamn right I have duct tape and visqueen.

Re:Purpose ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22526526)

the thing is that it will most likely be a decommissioned bunker - one that the armed forces of whatever country built it do not need any longer. it still is roomy, has autonomous emergency power, a lot of regular power lines, a nice internet line and makes for GREAT advertisement when you sell your rack space from within a nucular (ahem) proof bunker. the idea that the bunker was purpose-built for hosting some servers is, of course, preposterous.

Re:Purpose ? (2, Insightful)

zhrike (448699) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526882)

One reason, and a major one at that, is that simply snipping the cables leaves all of the data intact. Cables can be rerun, access can be restored, data,
once destroyed, is gone, and it is unlikely that a disaster recovery site would offer the same physical protection as a nuclear bunker.

Re:Purpose ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22527522)

How exactly does one go about breaking down the front door to seize the physical machines though?

Re:Purpose ? (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527640)

They sound like a perfect candidate for publishing on Freenet. Then the single point of failure is pretty much eliminated.

Then for people that don't run Freenet, some sort of 'public portal' would be needed. Sure, those portals could be shut down, but at least it wouldn't kill the project while waiting on more portals to appear.

Re:Purpose ? (1)

freyyr890 (1019088) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527848)

Physical cable isn't the only way to gain internet access. Satellite is really taking off in remote areas now. Of course, that's a bad example because satellite's line-of-sight, but there's other technologies that could be used for radio internet access underground.

Re:Purpose ? (1)

monoqlith (610041) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528008)

I would have to speculate that one reason is that the data the servers contain can withstand just about anything....The truth won't get lost in time, even if the rest of Earth sits through a nuclear holocaust.

Besides, you can restore a connection to the internet trivially, but you can't trivially restore servers with data on them that have been stolen.

Re:Purpose ? (1)

owlnation (858981) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528132)

Whats the point of placing the server in a nuclear bunker when you can just snip the cable (both metaphorically and physically) to limit the access.
No, it's cool. I mean after a nuclear war, rather than have, you know... access to how to get the power grid back up and running or basic medical procedures information that may save lives, and help society return to normal quickly... no, it's much better to have the dirty laundry of banks preserved for eternity.

Although it should, admittedly, serve as a warning to humanity -- since it was most probably the banks that ultimately were behind the war in the first place. It is likely no coincidence that banker rhymes with wanker.

Re:Purpose ? (1)

halcyon1234 (834388) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528566)

It's not in an abandoned nuclear bunker. It's in an "abandoned" nuclear bunker. Wikileaks goes chugging along-- but if anything ever hits their servers that's a bit too sensitive for the US government, someone presses a button, and the "abandoned" nuclear weapons in the bunker go "foom".

Re:Purpose ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22533322)

Abandoned nuclear weapons? WTF? Bunkers are for surviving nuclear attacks, not launching them. Admittedly some probably are meant to do both, protecting nukes from being destroyed in order to retaliate.

Re:Purpose ? (1)

mikael (484) | more than 5 years ago | (#22529952)

Whats the point of placing the server in a nuclear bunker when you can just snip the cable (both metaphorically and physically) to limit the access.

Advantages of operating in a nuclear bunker? Less variation in temperature and humidity which will probably be near constant. Notice the number of animals that make homes underground when they hibernate. Less chance of being affected by rioting crowds, crash-landing small planes, flooding and fires from adjacent buildings, chemical spills and power cuts. The bunker will have its own generators, and will probably also have its own satellite dish, so that even if the cables are cut (from maurading bulldozers or diggers), it would still be able to communicate with the outside world.

Where's the two-headed baby picture? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22526372)



I want to know, I have an enquiring mind. Two-headed english babies born in abandoned missle silos !! Ooooeeeaaaawww!!

If it's true (4, Insightful)

Xest (935314) | more than 6 years ago | (#22526376)

How would they afford such a premises?

Do sites like Wikileaks really have enough spare funding to pay for something like this?

It's interesting if true, would a nuclear bunker have internet access? Wouldn't it be quite a costly task getting internet access into such a bunker?

To be honest, even then it sounds like overkill, why would Wikileaks even need to survive a nuclear strike? Surely there are plenty of secure enough premises elsewhere that aren't nuclear-proofed that would be just as suitable for a whole lot less cost and hassle? I'm sure if they did get nuked we'd have a lot more to worry about than wikileaks future to be honest!

Re:If it's true (4, Interesting)

daveschroeder (516195) | more than 6 years ago | (#22526410)

It's not "WikiLeaks" that has the funding; it's the people who have set up WikiLeaks. From the article (which I know is mandatory not to read):

Laurie is an international consultant on internet security. Earlier he set up a business that bought two military bunkers, at the abandoned US base at Greenham Common, and at an old RAF radar station in Kent. His company rents them out to firms and banks who want to protect their servers from attack. The Kent bunker is deep underground: "The radar operators were supposed to survive 30 days after a nuclear strike."


Also, by virtue of WikiLeaks being here, it really isn't protected significantly more than it would be in any conventional secure datacenter. But it sure sounds cool, doesn't it?

The funny part of the article is that the online version ends with:

Laurie cautions that Wikileaks' vaunted encryption is not completely unbreakable. Codebreakers such as the US National Security Agency could prob


And then, nothing. Just a little mistake at the Guardian, but still kind of funny. ;-)

On a more serious note, the reason why WikiLeaks' DNS provider in the US was shut down was, well, because they didn't show up for court. At all.

For some more on WikiLeaks:

Court Issues Injunction Against Wikileaks.org [fas.org]
A Word from Wikileaks [fas.org]

Looks like WikiLeaks doesn't want anything negative said about their operation. Which is fairly ironic, if you stop to think for a moment...

Re:If it's true (2, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526528)

If this perception of "nuclear-hardened" security gives whistleblowers a sense of WikiLeaks' "permanence" and ability to disseminate their controversial material, and encourages more whistleblowers to come forward, then it's worth the fiction.

I'm just afraid that WikiLeaks somehow gets hold of NSA wiretapping records or George Bush's Air National Guard fiile they'll end up being declared a terrorist organization.

Re:If it's true (5, Interesting)

russotto (537200) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526586)

On a more serious note, the reason why WikiLeaks' DNS provider in the US was shut down was, well, because they didn't show up for court. At all.


Nor were they invited to. They received notice of the hearing, by email, hours before it happened. This wasn't a matter of ignoring a summons; they were intentionally excluded. Baer and Dynadot stipulated to a bunch of stuff so Dynadot could get itself off the hook, Baer requested a few more things (including the nuking of the A records), and the judge agreed -- without Wikileaks input.

Re:If it's true (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22526672)

Given the context of the situation and what happened, I think the OP meant Dynadot (the US DNS outfit), not Wikileaks, as the injunction was effectively against Dynadot, not Wikileaks.

Dynadot did issue a statement: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20080220005582/en [businesswire.com]

Re:If it's true (1)

Graham Clark (11925) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527180)

Also, by virtue of WikiLeaks being here

The article doesn't say that Wikileaks is there - the article says that a member of the advisory board, Ben Laurie, is involved with such a company. No statement is actually made about where the servers are.

If the founders wont use it (2, Insightful)

elucido (870205) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527472)


Then that says a lot about the wikileaks system. Of course, it's crackable, thats not surprising. What is surprising is that the guy who helped design it, says he wouldn't use the system himself.

Wikileaks can be made a lot more secure than it currently is, but how can they hype it up throughout the article and then at the very end, tear it all down with a phrase like: Laurie cautions that Wikileaks' vaunted encryption is not completely unbreakable. Codebreakers such as the US National Security Agency could probably crack it, he says. "If my life was on the line, I would not be submitting [documents] to Wikileaks."

no mistake (1)

commodoresloat (172735) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528496)

That wasn't a mistake at the Guardian. It was blatant censorship by the NSA. They really don't want readers of the Guardian to learn about their ability to brea

Re:If it's true (1)

Snowbat (1118171) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528874)

Also, by virtue of WikiLeaks being here, it really isn't protected significantly more than it would be in any conventional secure datacenter.
Well, the folks with the power saws [theregister.co.uk] will have to do a lot of digging .

Re:If it's true (2, Interesting)

jhylkema (545853) | more than 5 years ago | (#22529356)

On a more serious note, the reason why WikiLeaks' DNS provider in the US was shut down was, well, because they didn't show up for court. At all.


Actually, it's worse than that. WikiLeaks didn't show up for court because they couldn't. Bank Julius Baer ambushed them by failing to serve them with a complaint and moved ex parte for an injunction against their DNS provider. In fact, they still have not been properly served. See, if they get served, then they can retain counsel, answer the complaint, oppose the motion for injunction, make the bank prove up their alleged "irreparable harm," and other inconvenient matters. Suit and injunction is the preferred route.

I predict that BJB's attorneys and the judge that went along with this idiocy are going to get the smackdown on appeal.

Re:If it's true (4, Interesting)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 6 years ago | (#22526418)

They don't afford such premises - the Kent facility is a separate business called 'The Bunker' specialising in physically secure data centre facilities and is open to anyone who can pay the hosting charges there, and has been running since 2004. A ready made cold war bunker is a cheap alternative to a custom made building elsewhere - it was designed to be secure from the outset, and was available cheap when the MoD (Ministry of Defence) sold off many of its old assets over the past two decades.

Background link [riello-upspr.co.uk]

I've been inside the bunker (4, Informative)

Space cowboy (13680) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528018)

... and it's a pretty amazing place if you're at all geeky. They don't let people into all of it these days, but I went down before it was fully operational, a few years ago.

The blast doors are a sight to be seen - they're about 4 feet thick of solid steel. There's blast doors on every entrance and at locations inside. Even the taxman would have a hard time getting through that [grin]. Then there's the air purifiers, which can filter out all known airborn toxins for the entire complex, and several diesel generators for backup power. The diesel tanks are large enough to keep the whole place running for weeks.

There's the room that was always guarded when the place was operational, and didn't appear on the blueprints... There's the fact that everything everywehere is tempest shielded, and there's the fact that it has sufficient fibre coming into it to carry most of the internet traffic worldwide - literally metre-thick bundles of the stuff. Oh, and it's H U G E inside; they'll not be running out of space any time soon...

Quite an amazing place.

Simon.

Re:If it's true (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22526588)

Re: It's interesting if true, would a nuclear bunker have internet access?

Wasn't the internet invented for nuclear bunkers back in the fifties..?

Re:If it's true (4, Funny)

Bourbon Man (76846) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526904)

Close. The internet was indeed invented for underground structures, and they could be considered "nuclear bunkers" in a way. The internet was invented for basements, so geeks would never have to be exposed to the thermonuclear radiation of the sun.

Re:If it's true (2, Insightful)

PRDS (1009871) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526650)

Also, what is there to leak after a nuclear strike. Any hidden operations centers would be the main operating facilities of the US government. Most major government operations would be disrupted. Major cities would probably be targeted, there by taking out cooperate America. Not to mention that if "surviving company X" is dumping too much arsenic into the Missouri river, what does that matter when 500 miles surrounding Los Angeles is uninhabitable for the next 50 years? Why would a whistle blower need a safe refuge in such an environment? There would be no more secrets.

Re:If it's true (2, Informative)

fredklein (532096) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527058)

How would they afford such a premises?

They're not that expansive.

From http://www.missilebases.com/ [missilebases.com] :

Polo, MO, Hardened Underground Communications vault on 10 acres (more or less), built in the 1960's as a nuclear war-proof communications center, 8,800 sq. ft. usable floor space, 24" thick walls & ceiling, 2' to 4' of earth over, metal shield enveloping entire structure, two 1000 pound blast doors, 6 air vents with filtration and blast valve closure mechanisms, well on site, 10,000 gallon stainless steel water storage tank, escape hatch emergency exit, 177 ft. tower (a rental possibility). Lighting, pumps, fans, heating, cooling, dehumidification present in structure. Electric hoist operational. Commercial zoning, low property taxes. Video $24. Excellent for underground home or secure document storage facility.

Price: $299,000.00


So, 300 grand- about the price of a good house.

Atlas-F Sites

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A pretty home-site. Video available soon (not yet available) $24

Price: $229,000.00


of course, you can go crazy, too:

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Denver, CO. 210 total acres. Very rare piece of history - only 18 built. Massive 45,000 + sq. ft. of underground floor-space; high chain-link fence around central complex; 2 high capacity deep wells (into aquifer) in power dome; 3 missile silos all interconnected by mile of tunnels. Launch control dome is the best we've seen. Distant mountain views, just 20 minutes from metropolitan area and international airport. Large capacity elevator intact; needs reconditioned. Under new ownership; clean-up and refurbishment underway. Many unique possibilities for commercial or private usage. Serious and capable buyers only.

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Who will be brave enough to use wikileaks? (1)

elucido (870205) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527434)


The founders of wikileaks are afraid to use the system themselves and claim it's crackable. So if it's crackable, who exactly do they expect to use it?

"Laurie cautions that Wikileaks' vaunted encryption is not completely unbreakable. Codebreakers such as the US National Security Agency could probably crack it, he says. "If my life was on the line, I would not be submitting [documents] to Wikileaks.""

If the NSA can crack wikileaks, chances are China, Russia, and many other intelligence agencies can crack wikileaks. They have super computers and quantum computers too. So if governments can crack it, and if the founders wouldn't us it, who is it being built for? I suppose it would be strong enough to withstand the cracking ability of African governments, and governments in the third world. However, then in these situations theres risk if the encryption scheme is crackable.

Re:Who will be brave enough to use wikileaks? (2, Funny)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 5 years ago | (#22529688)

Umm... Quantum computers? I think you aught to do your research...

Re:If it's true (3, Insightful)

Deadstick (535032) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527854)

I have some documents stored behind tons of hardened steel and reinforced concrete, with an armed guard. If bad guys got hold of them I could be out fifty, maybe a hundred thousand dollars. Somehow, I manage to afford it.

Of course, I'm not the only safe-deposit box holder at my bank, and I suspect Wikileaks is not the only tenant in that Cold-War surplus bunker.

rj

Wow the guardian is gullible (5, Interesting)

blowdart (31458) | more than 6 years ago | (#22526452)

Well the Guardian isn't known for fact checking.

Currently wikileaks is at http://88.80.13.160 [88.80.13.160], which belongs to "prq Inet - Access" based in Sweden. Greenham Common itself has been returned to civilian use, and most of it is being turned back into countryside and held in trust. The missile silos are being turning into a historical monument. There is a small business park [new-greenham-park.co.uk], which does have a company [thebunker.net] providing secure hosting in one of the old bunkers (which I guess is sort of "an abandoned US nuclear weapons base at Greenham Common", but not quite, saying abandoned gives the idea of secret hackers stringing ethernet at night whilst no-one sees). The same company also hosts in an old radar station in Kent, at, Marshborough Road, Sandwich.

However the UK is not a good choice for hosting this sort of thing; our libel laws are open to all sorts of abuse these days, there's a tendency right now for individuals to sue in the UK high court for libel over publications which aren't even available in the UK, so called "libel holidays". Whilst secure hosting is all very nice marketing speak when the laws of the land will conspire against you then the security of your hosting is secondary; after all, really, what are they worried about? A company hiring a rogue agent to fire bomb the hosting? Most hosting facilities have large fences, gates and security, and a bunch are undergound. Being ex-military land doesn't improve security that much.

Re:Wow the guardian is gullible (1)

Gossi (731861) | more than 6 years ago | (#22526490)

Mod this comment up (the parent one) (and mine if you want).

"PRQ Inet" is the people who host The Pirate Bay. They're based in Sweden. They got raided by the police a few years ago, it was covered on Slashdot, so it's hardly a secret location.

Re:Wow the guardian is gullible (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22526564)

A google search for the phrase "libel holidays" returns nothing:

Results 1 - 1 of 1 for "libel holidays". (0.09 seconds)

Doesn't sound like these "so called" libel holidays are really called libel holidays

Re:Wow the guardian is gullible (1)

Celandine (610250) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526760)

The guardian article doesn't say the servers are in this bunker: the summary is wrong. But then ./ readers aren't known for reading TFA.

Re:Wow the guardian is gullible (1)

daenris (892027) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527120)

Yes, and Ben Laurie, who is on the advisors board of Wikileaks according to the article, is also the Director of Security for The Bunker, which is the site offering secure hosting you link to above. From this, you don't think it's possible that Wikileaks was hosted there and because of the legal/court issues was forced to redirect their hosting for the moment?

Re:Wow the guardian is gullible (2, Informative)

Graham Clark (11925) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527128)

The Guardian didn't say the data was there - they commented on the background of someone they were talking to. The information about The Bunker, is, as far as I can tell, entirely correct. The assumption that Wikileaks uses it was made by the /. poster rather than being part of the article.

Re:Wow the guardian is gullible (NOT) (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22527880)

Part of PRQ's business is selling network tunneling services. For a small price, you can have your public tunnel end show up at PRQ in Sweden, while your real server(s) are elsewhere.

Their top advertised tunneling package [prq.se], for 150 SEK/month (about €16.11), gives you unlimited bandwidth plus four static IP adresses and reverse DNS config.

Perhaps you should check some sources yourself, before your you blow the horn next time

Re:Wow the guardian is gullible (NOT) (1)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528148)

Parent is right, plus its highly unlikely that wikileaks is running a 1 server / 1 location show. They probably have a few centers in a wikipeidia style and each center will have a few machines (a tor note, an i2p node, a squid proxy, an apache, a database server, a backup) so having a setup hosted is completly reasonable. Its also completly possible and incredible sensible that they have a backup server in the bunker, meaning that any attack wikileaks wouldn't affect the backups, unless at the same time both nuclear bunkers were breached.

p.s since when has the guardian been bad at fact checking ive only heard of tabloids be pis poor at fact checking, ive never heard of a broadsheets (guardian especially) running an easily falsifiable story.

Re:Wow the guardian is gullible (1)

mcpheat (597661) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528350)

The bunkers used for housing the nuclear missiles have the blast doors disabled in the open position to comply with the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty. These doors are big enough to drive a large truck through so these bunkers are effecively useless. The secure hosting company is based in one of the smaller buildings on site.

I often wondered if we advance so far that we.... (4, Insightful)

3seas (184403) | more than 6 years ago | (#22526466)

....lose touch with the way of living without all the advances such that should a disaster happen that destroys our advances, would we know enough about how to live without that we could survive it with minimal loses due to just plain ignorance of living without the advances?

Where would wikileaks be, even though they could perhaps transmit, who would have the receivers?
Say a nuclear event happen, but not one of man but rather nature, ie asteroid, record breaking sun flares, etc. that disabled/destroyed our computer technology and satellite system.

Imagine the mindset change that would be required to just survive without computers.

So the idea of wikileaks being in some nuclear bunker... its just a location that may no longer be secret.

Re:I often wondered if we advance so far that we.. (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526726)

"A Phon-o-graph? What the f-eep-is that?" - Child ~13 on 'kid nation' reading the label on a picture of one.

Re:I often wondered if we advance so far that we.. (1)

CrimsonAvenger (580665) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526858)

....lose touch with the way of living without all the advances such that should a disaster happen that destroys our advances, would we know enough about how to live without that we could survive it with minimal loses due to just plain ignorance of living without the advances?

Never happen. We'd just look up how to live without all the advances on the internet, and we'd be good to go....

That said, if you know how to make black powder and alcohol, you're probably well ahead of the post-apocalyptic game. And if your home-brewed alcohol is potable, so much the better.

Re:I often wondered if we advance so far that we.. (1)

eggstasy (458692) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528090)

The neat thing about the world we live in is that there are people with all kinds of crazy little obssessions. There are people who just love history, and people who obssess about arcane wilderness survival techniques.
In the event of a catastrophe, so long as those few in possession of the knowledge you need are not entirely wiped out, odds are such information will be sufficiently highly valued to spread very quickly.
Just look at the bible. It's got info from thousands of years ago because lots of people are convinced it is a unique pearl of wisdom handed down directly from their all-mighty creator ;)

Re:I often wondered if we advance so far that we.. (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 5 years ago | (#22529126)

"Imagine the mindset change that would be required to just survive without computers."

Imagine the scornworthy, overly delicate, hothouse-flower mindset than would come unglued without computers.
Glad I don't have it.

Protection? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22526494)

If you remove the word "nuclear" for a moment, a bunker would be a good place to prevent theft or sabotage of servers used for purposes like these.

Re:Protection? (2, Informative)

garett_spencley (193892) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526898)

True, but like someone else already pointed out, you can still censor them by removing their access to the Internet. Either by cutting the cable physically or blocking them at the first outside router, or in the case that already occurred, remove their DNS A records.

The way I see it, where they host is largely irrelevant as long as they're somewhere that's neutral and will protect their rights to free speech and won't succumb to political pressure to censor them. I'm not sure that such a place exists but Switzerland might be the first place I would look.

Re:Protection? (4, Informative)

mysticgoat (582871) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527062)

Other advantages of a bunker are

  • designed with backup generators and large fuel storage for same
  • might be purchasable with those already in place
  • designed for keeping electronics cool
  • multiple hardened cable conduits to remote access points like
    • widely distributed radar antennae
    • redundant comm links to external control centers
  • relatively cheap, since there is not much demand for office space several hundred feet underground.

Missile silos would also offer some unique experiences in bungee jumping. Or, you could plan on not having to take out the garbage for several decades.

Re:Protection? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22527602)

relatively cheap, since there is not much demand for office space several hundred feet underground.

Total, absolute non sequitur. By your reasoning, hosting facilities in space or on the bottom of the ocean should also be cheap, since there's not much demand for office space - or even any kind of function space - there, either.

Re:Protection? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22527716)

Extra bonus: good luck to the FBI agents coming in with a warrant to collect your hardware.

Re:Protection? (1)

constantnormal (512494) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527776)

"relatively cheap"

Really? I would have thought that being somewhat isolated, utilities might cost more in a deprecated missile silo than in an area with abundant connectivity to various utility grids, and the expense of running pumps to keep the silo dry (underground facilities like this tend to collect a lot of water, and would rapidly fill up without substantial pumping facilities), not to mention the additional expense of back-up pumps and additional maintenance thereof.

Does anyone have any actual hard numbers on what it costs to lease space in an underground "secure" facility, vs leasing space in a typical industrial park? Assuming that utilities are included in the lease, of course.

I am highly suspicious of the actual truth behind this story, as Brit newspapers (as well as those in the colonies) are notorious for spinning a story to sell more papers, with little regard for the actual facts of the matter.

Re:Protection? (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528052)

Greenham isn't that isolated. It is a few miles from Newbury, which is the home of Vodafone, the largest telephone company in the world.

Re:Protection? (1)

Fweeky (41046) | more than 5 years ago | (#22529700)

expense of running pumps to keep the silo dry (underground facilities like this tend to collect a lot of water, and would rapidly fill up without substantial pumping facilities)
A bunker with such severe flooding issues probably won't sell well. The last bunker I saw, the flooding issues were mostly solved by strategic placement of a bucket.

Worse to die 30 days later (2, Informative)

Mishotaki (957104) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526536)

In my opinion, i'd prefer to die from the nuclear blast than from starvation 30 days later because there would be no rescue coming after a nuclear explosion...

You'd die a much more painful death like that than if you'd be in the blast radius...

Re:Worse to die 30 days later (1)

sakdoctor (1087155) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526702)

Do not assume that everyone would just sit and wait to be rescued.

In that situation I would try and avoid starvation by hunting and eating long pig.

Re:Worse to die 30 days later (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22527348)

How about "wide pig" aka American Bacon. :)

now that there's no place left to hide (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22526570)

let yOUR conscience be yOUR guide. you can be more helpful than you might have imagined. there are still some choices. if they do not suit you, consider the likely results of continuing to follow the corepirate nazi hypenosys story LIEn, whereas anything of relevance is replaced almost instantly with pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking propaganda or 'celebrity' trivia 'foam'. meanwhile; don't forget to get a little more oxygen on yOUR brain, & look up in the sky from time to time, starting early in the day. there's lots going on up there.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071229/ap_on_sc/ye_climate_records;_ylt=A0WTcVgednZHP2gB9wms0NUE [yahoo.com]
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20080108/ts_alt_afp/ushealthfrancemortality;_ylt=A9G_RngbRIVHsYAAfCas0NUE [yahoo.com]
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/31/opinion/31mon1.html?em&ex=1199336400&en=c4b5414371631707&ei=5087%0A [nytimes.com]

is it time to get real yet? A LOT of energy is being squandered in attempts to keep US in the dark. in the end (give or take a few 1000 years), the creators will prevail (world without end, etc...), as it has always been. the process of gaining yOUR release from the current hostage situation may not be what you might think it is. butt of course, most of US don't know, or care what a precarious/fatal situation we're in. for example; the insidious attempts by the felonious corepirate nazi execrable to block the suns' light, interfering with a requirement (sunlight) for us to stay healthy/alive. it's likely not good for yOUR health/memories 'else they'd be bragging about it? we're intending for the whoreabully deceptive (they'll do ANYTHING for a bit more monIE/power) felons to give up/fail even further, in attempting to control the 'weather', as well as a # of other things/events.

http://video.google.com/videosearch?hl=en&q=video+cloud+spraying [google.com]

dictator style micro management has never worked (for very long). it's an illness. tie that with life0cidal aggression & softwar gangster style bullying, & what do we have? a greed/fear/ego based recipe for disaster. meanwhile, you can help to stop the bleeding (loss of life & limb);

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/28/vermont.banning.bush.ap/index.html [cnn.com]

the bleeding must be stopped before any healing can begin. jailing a couple of corepirate nazi hired goons would send a clear message to the rest of the world from US. any truthful look at the 'scorecard' would reveal that we are a society in decline/deep doo-doo, despite all of the scriptdead pr ?firm? generated drum beating & flag waving propaganda that we are constantly bombarded with. is it time to get real yet? please consider carefully ALL of yOUR other 'options'. the creators will prevail. as it has always been.

corepirate nazi execrable costs outweigh benefits
(Score:-)mynuts won, the king is a fink)
by ourselves on everyday 24/7

as there are no benefits, just more&more death/debt & disruption. fortunately there's an 'army' of light bringers, coming yOUR way. the little ones/innocents must/will be protected. after the big flash, ALL of yOUR imaginary 'borders' may blur a bit? for each of the creators' innocents harmed in any way, there is a debt that must/will be repaid by you/us, as the perpetrators/minions of unprecedented evile, will not be available. 'vote' with (what's left in) yOUR wallet, & by your behaviors. help bring an end to unprecedented evile's manifestation through yOUR owned felonious corepirate nazi glowbull warmongering execrable. some of US should consider ourselves somewhat fortunate to be among those scheduled to survive after the big flash/implementation of the creators' wwwildly popular planet/population rescue initiative/mandate. it's right in the manual, 'world without end', etc.... as we all ?know?, change is inevitable, & denying/ignoring gravity, logic, morality, etc..., is only possible, on a temporary basis. concern about the course of events that will occur should the life0cidal execrable fail to be intervened upon is in order. 'do not be dismayed' (also from the manual). however, it's ok/recommended, to not attempt to live under/accept, fauxking nazi felon greed/fear/ego based pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking hypenosys.

consult with/trust in yOUR creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."

meanwhile, the life0cidal philistines continue on their path of death, debt, & disruption for most of US. gov. bush denies health care for the little ones;

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/10/03/bush.veto/index.html [cnn.com]

whilst demanding/extorting billions to paint more targets on the bigger kids;

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/12/bush.war.funding/index.html [cnn.com]

& pretending that it isn't happening here;

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article3086937.ece [timesonline.co.uk]
all is not lost/forgotten/forgiven

(yOUR elected) president al gore (deciding not to wait for the much anticipated 'lonesome al answers yOUR questions' interview here on /.) continues to attempt to shed some light on yOUR foibles. talk about reverse polarity;

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article3046116.ece [timesonline.co.uk]

Re:now that there's no place left to hide (1)

shrtcircuit (936357) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526708)

This is where I'd normally insert the "I can catch lightning in a bottle, but still don't know what the fuck you just said" picture made so popular from Internet message boards.

But since I can't insert the image...

What the hell did you just say? No, seriously. Reading that post was like watching retards try to screw a doorknob. Lay off the meth and try it again.

Great reporting (2, Informative)

jrothwell97 (968062) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526576)

Thanks for telling us where the server is - I think I might take a daytrip there now! I'd better start preparing a picnic!

survival is nothing (1)

sveard (1076275) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526618)

The Kent bunker is deep underground and supposed to survive 30 days after a nuclear strike.

I bet I can survive a nuclear strike (sans hair, that is), if I'm not too close to ground zero :p

Is it safe? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22526732)

"The Kent bunker is deep underground and supposed to survive 30 days after a nuclear strike."
The bunker may be intact, but wont the servers get fried by the EMP following a nuclear-explosion?

6 ft. deep (2, Informative)

Teun (17872) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526860)

Maybe the servers are well protected in a bunker.

But the cables run 4 ft. deep.

Makes me think what the advantage of the N/H bomb proof bunker is...

Re:6 ft. deep (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528162)

4 feet deep is plenty to protect the cables against a soft kill from a near miss or a hit to a nearby target.

Re:6 ft. deep (1)

DerWulf (782458) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528414)

You guys realize that the data is on the server, right?
A-Bomb poof means also bomb proof and "Sorry, we didn't mean to fly that plan into your datacenter that happened to host incriminating information about us" proof.

Yep they have a video on You Tube Open Source (1)

FromTheAir (938543) | more than 5 years ago | (#22526868)

Open Source Intelligence, streaming the truth to millions, it shows their server racks etc. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nQ93axcqA9U [youtube.com]

Yep, it almost looks like Google is secretly involved, and they speak of the seven memes being released, I think there are clues in the video.

Re:Yep they have a video on You Tube Open Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22527362)

Too much LSD buddy.

Re:Yep they have a video on You Tube Open Source (1)

mbius (890083) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528286)

I'm watching now, and if the TIMECUBE guy doesn't show up I'm'a be mighty disappointed.

Utilize P2P for Content Distribution of Wikileaks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22526914)

Use P2P or similar mechanisms to distribute Wikileaks material, along with some clever way to access it via the web browser. This is unfortunately a necessary step for them to take, to prevent censorship. It's the mistake that Bluefrog Security made, assuming that nobody would take them out (and look what happened).

Law & Diplomacy (4, Insightful)

Scot Seese (137975) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527706)

Nuclear bunker? That's really cute.

  Fortifying your server inside physical security is painfully 1960's thinking. Your defenses will be defeated by the power of the subpoena and heavy handed back room diplomacy between governments.

  We're going to watch the Pirate Bay issue play itself out accordingly. It doesn't matter if they mirror/move the tracker servers out of Sweden; the U.S. State department, acting on the behest of government officials beholden to enormously wealthy and influential lobbyists and IP (intellectual property) owning media companies - will suddenly start reminding X, Y and Z governments (in countries now hosting illicit material) that the huge agricultural trade deal they want with the U.S. may suddenly stall out because "we don't do business with countries that sponsor or turn a blind eye to the theft of American property." Oh, you wanted us to vote FOR your membership to the WTO? Well, about that pirate MP3 website hosted in your country, getting 500,000 hits a day..

Re:Law & Diplomacy (1)

funkatron (912521) | more than 6 years ago | (#22531006)

Ultimately this is not the pirate bay's problem. They can move and be moved as much as the technology allows. This sort of thing will throw up issues for the countries concerned but will hardly ever be a problem for piracy.

Besides, what are you doing that means you need intellectual property anyway?? Make some good you lazy shits.

Any single location is vulnerable (4, Interesting)

presidenteloco (659168) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527796)

Especially if known about.

A better solution for information safety (preservation) is a combination of the following attributes:
-Widely Distributed
-Massively Redundant
-Strongly Encrypted
-Rewrappable by newer encryption
-Fragmented with self-seeking assembly
-Self-healing (checks that enough copies of self exist and makes more if not)
-Autonomously Mobile - Self-seeks newer and more reliable storage using a map of internet hosts with stats

That's orders of magnitude better than one bunker to which the electricity or datapipes can be cut.

Re:Any single location is vulnerable (1)

Crypto Gnome (651401) | more than 6 years ago | (#22532912)

A better solution for information safety (preservation) is a combination of the following attributes:
-Widely Distributed
-Massively Redundant
-Strongly Encrypted
-Rewrappable by newer encryption
-Fragmented with self-seeking assembly
-Self-healing (checks that enough copies of self exist and makes more if not)
-Autonomously Mobile - Self-seeks newer and more reliable storage using a map of internet hosts with stats
So what you're saying is that the human race will one day be destroyed by an AI "accidentally" developed by a radical group researching "information preservation"?

Someone read this incorrectly (4, Informative)

R3s0lut3 (861752) | more than 5 years ago | (#22527810)

I read that whole article before I visited slashdot this morning, and nowhere does it suggest that WikiLeaks' servers are in those bunkers. The Bunker was a past business venture of Ben Laurie, who designed the encryption methods used by the site. That information is presented to give insight into one of the minds behind the creation of Wikileaks, nothing more. Any connection between the Bunker and Wikileaks is made by the reader, not the author.

Wikia Search Also in A Data Bunker (1)

miller60 (554835) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528190)

It could be that those Wikipedia folks just like underground data centers. Wikia Search, the search engine from the founders of Wikipedia, houses its servers in an ultra-secure underground hosting facility in Iowa [datacenterknowledge.com]. There are a growing number of these "data bunkers" that are getting business from folks who are paranoid about security, some of whom do indeed want "nuke-proof" hosting. I'm not sure if that's the issue for Wikia ... it's more likely that it's the proximity for Wikia's Jeremie Miller (perhaps best known to Slashdot readers as the developer of the Jabber instant messaging program) who is based in Iowa.

Advertising article. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#22528332)

This story seems more like advertising for WikiLeaks rather than hard research providing new information because there are more people involved in keeping WikiLeaks running than are cited in the article... And it is more interesting to note who is and isn't mentioned than just who is.

Is it just me... (1)

Secret Rabbit (914973) | more than 5 years ago | (#22528922)

... or does writing about such "conspiracy theories" tell of journalistic downfall. I mean, we have studies now that show that the youth of today can't/doesn't distinguish the difference between CNN, The BBC or there buddies facebook page. Perhaps its bled its way up the chain to an even more significant degree then previously thought.

Bunker Schmunker..... (2, Interesting)

IHC Navistar (967161) | more than 5 years ago | (#22529178)

What's the benefit? If Wikileaks did have their servers in a decomissioned nuclear bunker, then the government would have a list of possible locations that it would be in the for of a list of decommisioned bunkers. If the founders were as smart as they claim to be, they would hide it in plain sight. I mean, what wold seem like a more probable place to hide a "hot-button" web site that strives to make life difficult for Big Brother?

Location A: Decommissioned nuclear bunker.

Location B: Decommissioned Atlas missile silo.

Location C: Underneath a chicken coop in rural Oklahoma?
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