Boys HS Hoops: Warrensville Heights Wins Thriller Over Elyria Catholic 80-77 in OT

first_imgBy Mark PerezLast year, Warrensville Heights got knocked off by Elyria Catholic in the district tournament.Fast forward to 2020, No. 4-seeded Tigers faced No. 2-seeded Panthers again, but instead of a sectional final, it was the Division II, Bedford District Final and Warrensville Heights got their revenge after an 80-77 overtime thriller to send them to the Regional [email protected]_BB is your District champions!FinalWarrensville Hts: [email protected] 77— Mark Perez-Krywany (@MarkPerezK10) March 7, 2020 “[The win] means everything,” Tigers coach Brian Swift said with the district championship plaque in his arms.“It’s been a long year for us. It’s been an up-and-down roller coaster. We started [the season] off 2-0. Then we lost about seven-straight (games). We kind of lost our way… But, we came together, at one point, and we have been going up ever since.”The Tigers championship win was a roller-coaster experience as they started the game off by conceding a 13-1 Panthers’ run to help them gain a 20-13 lead at the end of the first quarter.“We knew that there would be jitters early [in the game],” Swift said.“But, I think that we were just … got a little timid instead of aggressive. Once we settled down and got comfortable, we started to pick our spots and we started to execute better.”Jumpstarting (14-12) Warrensville Heights was Omahn Dobbins, who missed last year’s playoff game against (18-6) Elyria Catholic.Dobbins was on fire in the first half scoring 15 of his 18 total points after the 13-1 run led by star Panthers’ guard Edward Wright with, who had 30 points, 11 rebounds, four assists and four blocksDobbins made 6-of-8 field goals and had 4 assists in the first half to make it a 38-37 Panthers’ lead at halftime. After Dobbins cooled off, Junior star guard Ramelle Arnold got into a rhythm and took over the game by scoring 24 points in the second half shooting 70 percent from the field.“I feel like (Arnold) is the best point guard in the state,” Tigers’ Trezelle McQueen said.“He can do everything. Defend, score, facilitate, team-player. I love that dude.”Arnold finished with 34 points, five assists and six rebounds.The Tigers were able to slow down Panthers big-man Branson Taylor, the scorer with allowing 12 points. But this gave other Elyria Catholic players opportunities and Taylor found the open man as he finished with seven assists, two blocks and 15 rebounds.“When (Taylor) got the (ball), we tried to double him a little bit,” Swift said.We tried to be scrappy… If he did want to dribble, we just wanted to swarm him quickly.”In the third quarter, Taylor hooked up with point guard Ryan Griffin multiple times to score Griffin’s 10 of his 20 total points.Wright, has a reputation for hitting clutch shots as he hit one against Crestwood in the prior round to win it and hit another 3-pointer against Warrensville Heights to send the game into overtime.TIE GAME WITH 4.4 SECONDS REMAINING!Edward [email protected]— Mark Perez-Krywany (@MarkPerezK10) March 7, 2020 Related TopicsElyria Catholic PanthersfeaturedWarrensville Heights Tigers A basket from Arnold, Jamarion Johnson, and two free-throws from McQueen gave the Tigers a 3-point lead, but the Panthers had one more opportunity to tie the game, but they failed to get Wright the ball for a chance, due to Warrensville Heights’ deny ball defense on the star guard.“We made it [an emphasis] that (Wight) doesn’t touch the ball,” Arnold said.“I just did my best. I didn’t pay attention to any other guys. I was focused straight on him.”McQueen was a big presence in the paint as he blocked five shots to go along with his nine rebounds and 6 points.But, coming off the bench, Johnson was huge for the Tigers who scored 13 points on the court. Warrensville Heights advances to the Regional Semifinals and will take on No. 1 seed Norwayne in the Canton Fieldhouse on Mar. 11. NEO HS Stafflast_img read more

North holds all the aces

first_imgIPGC golf from The LinksSunday, Jan. 13, Green Valley – StablefordThere was yet another good turnout today for our regular Sunday fixture at Green Valley and as usual at this time of year conditions were perfect. Gabriel Enright was pleased he managed to get out of bed this week after last week’s no-show, as he took first place with 35 points, beating Brian Wilkinson 11-10 on the last 6 holes, after both scored 18 points on the back 9. Larry Ang took third with 33 points.Cliff North celebrates his hole-in-one.A good day was completed for Gabriel as he had the only ‘2’.1st Gabriel Enright (17) 35pts2nd Brian Wilkinson (14) 35pts3rd Larry Ang (26) 33ptsTuesday, Jan. 15, Mountain Shadow – StablefordMountain Shadow off the blue tees is always a good challenge, and so it proved today for those that made the journey, with the wind blowing to start with, then easing off to leave a really hot day.  The course remains in excellent condition, and the greens are some of the best in the area at the moment, so the four no-shows and one late cancellation missed out on an excellent days golf.Cliff North stole the show today, taking first place with 36 points, in a round which contained one 5-pointer, three 4-pointers, and five blobs, including a run of birdie, eagle, and sextuple bogey!  Most importantly for Cliff, however, was that the eagle came at the short 5th, claiming his first ever hole in one, with a beautifully struck 9 iron that never wavered from line over its 120 yard flight.  Cliff then followed that up with a hole in eleven at the par 5 sixth!Back at The Links, it was congratulations all round for Cliff, but in all the excitement he forgot to buy the customary round for those assembled.  There’s always next time!1st Cliff North (20) 36pts2nd Jens Gunnarsson (15) 30pts3rd Jan Deenoi (32) 28ptsNote:  The Links depart from the hotel on Soi Buakhao at 10.30am on Tuesdays and Thursdays and 9.45am for Green Valley every Sunday.  Sign up at the hotel or contact Jon on 080 021 1034.  A full schedule of courses can be found on the IPGC website read more

Blue Moose says goodbye to Pattaya Country Club

first_imgThree Sisters Blue Moose GolfThis 28th of March was our last day of golf at the Pattaya Country Club, at least until late 2013. The course will be open for 9 holes of golf for those interested. All future golf will be played out of the Blue Moose Bar and Apartments. Seventeen players showed up to play. Several areas of the course were soaked as the sprinklers must have been left on all night. The greens were shabby which is probably why the course is undergoing renovation.Rich Murphy on the left and Dale Murphy on the right.Returning to Caddy Shack II for the last time, the cards were tallied and the winner was Rich Murphy with 40 points followed by Dale Murphy also with 40 points but lost to Rich on the count-back.This being the end of the month it was Trophy day. Herbie furnished snacks of chips, nachos and pretzels. The entree was steamed hot dogs. No agreement was reached as to the next venue or venues. Bill Thompson, owner of the Blue Moose will post the agenda on his web page.last_img read more

Tom’s double up farewell

first_img2nd Jon Batty (6) 33pts3rd John O’Sullivan (23) 32pts4th Shuichi Kodaka (18) 31pts5th Andrew Purdie (6) 30pts6th Mark Lang (6) 29ptsGreenwood was as usual in very good shape although as with all the courses during the week it was affected by the recent rains.Tom McCarthy took his first win of his final week with the group prior to his return to the USA.  His solid round was marred but just one zero but included five 3-pointers and one 4-pointer and proved to be just enough to squeeze ahead of Jon Batty in second place.  John O’Sullivan was close behind in third spot having also looked good after the opening nine.Shuichi Kodaka continued the trend of a good front but a worse back nine in fourth place just in front of Andrew Purdie who was the only player on the day to reverse that trend, which left Marl Lang in sixth just another point behind.There were no 2s in either of the divisions.Tom McCarthy.Wednesday, August 2, Pattana A & C (white tees) – StablefordCSS 741st Andrew Purdie (6) 36pts2nd Mark Armstrong (25) 32pts3rd Tom McCarthy (23) 31pts4th Jon Batty (6) 30pts5th Neville Duncan (10) 26ptsAndrew Purdie stayed well ahead of the chasing players today with a very tidy card of 36 points.  Mark Armstrong ran him closest four back in second place, just one in front of the week’s inform player, Tom McCarthy in third.Jon Batty, although not able to produce his previous form, did just enough to claim his second podium placement for the week taking fourth, which left Neville Duncan the next best finisher in fifth some four shots back.With the par 6 on the A nine included in the par 73 it was not surprising that the CSS for the day moved out a shot to 74, as the course was playing very long from the white tees.Friday, August 4, Phoenix Gold – StablefordCSS 721st Tom McCarthy (23) 39pts2nd Darryl Burkett (12) 34pts3rd Danny Greer (27) 32pts4th John O’Sullivan (23) 31pts5th Frank Dunstan (27) 32pts6th Mark Armstrong (25) 30ptsFollowing the recent European Ladies (ELPGA) event the course was playing to its most difficult level with the rough very difficult to play from, although the fairways and greens were in good condition.Tom McCarthy took his second win of the week with an even better round that his previous win, returning a card that included two 4-pointers and six 3-pointers and but for three zeros would have seen an even more dramatic reduction in his handicap to take back home with him.Darry Burkett did well enough on his return to secure second place although five shots adrift of the winner.  Third placed Danny Greer managed to find the correct course this week for a round with his chums instead of a lonely one.John O’Sullivan hung on for an extra round in the week before returning to his northern estate and won a count back for fourth over Frank Dunstan with a better 17 to 14, which then left Mark Armstrong on the final step of the podium in sixth.For the third time in the week there were no 2s in either of the divisions ensuring a huge couple of pots for next week’s events. The Haven Golf SocietyMonday, July 31, Greenwood B & C – StablefordCSS 731st Tom McCarthy (23) 34ptslast_img read more

Will Real Madrid call on the spirit of poor Juanito again?

first_img We waited for the reaction of Madrid in the second half. But it did not arrive. Desperate, but they could not get close to putting the ball in Wolfsburg’s net. Zero clear opportunities on goal. On the other hand, Keylor stopped it from being 3-0. Madrid suffered an ‘Alcorconazo’ against the Germans. The ‘undecima’ is a lot trickier now, a lot, lot trickier. And Florentino startes to quiver. Upd. on 07/04/2016 at 11:23 CEST Lluis Mascaro A Madrid that had nothing to do with the side that beat Barcelona at Camp Nou. A Madrid that failed in defence (Danilo especially) and was incapable of launching dangerous attacks. With Ronaldo and Bale invisible and Benzema injured. And with the impotence of Zidane, who did not know how to take decisions to revert the situation.  06/04/2016 Madrid made their bed in the first half. They were humiliated when Wolfsburg scored two goals in seven minutes and were allowed to arrive at the break with a scandalous scoreline. Los Blancos were at the mercy of the intensity and enthusiasm of the Germans. If it were not for Keylor Navas, the beating could have been historic.  Real Madrid suffered another historic humiliation in the Champions League. Los Blancos, who were very happy after the draw and being paired with Wolfsburg, supposedly the weakest team, were well beaten by the Germans and now must launch an epic comeback at the Santiago Bernabeu. Will they invoke the poor spirit of Juanito once more to launch it? We will see if they have more luck than on other occasions…last_img read more

Homeless traced to ice usage

first_imgBy LIA SPENCER ICE is one of the factors driving up homelessness in Pakenham and surrounds, with domestic violence, mental…[To read the rest of this story Subscribe or Login to the Gazette Access Pass] Thanks for reading the Pakenham Berwick Gazette. Subscribe or Login to read the rest of this content with the Gazette Digital Access Pass subscription.last_img

Barnett Selected Southland Women’s Tennis Player of the Week

first_imgFRISCO, Texas – Nicholls sophomore Stephanie Barnett has been chosen Southland Conference Women’s Tennis Player of the Week, the league office announced Tuesday. Each school’s sports information director nominates and votes for the players of the week, though is not permitted to vote for his own player. To receive honorable mention, a player must receive votes from 25 percent of the Southland sports information directors. Women’s Tennis Player of the Week – Stephanie Barnett, NichollsBarnett led Nicholls to remain undefeated in conference play by going 4-0 at the No. 1 singles and doubles positions this past weekend. In the match at Lamar Saturday, Barnett defeated Katya Lapayeva in straight-sets, 6-3, 7-5, after teaming up with Klara Skopac for an 8-3 doubles win. The sophomore from Victoria, Australia, put together an even more impressive outing Sunday in the match at Sam Houston State by earning a 8-1 doubles win before recording a 6-3, 6-0 singles victory over Olivia Battye. The Colonels won the dual league matches against the Lady Cardinals and the Bearkats by identical scores of 6-1.center_img Honorable mention this week goes to Stephen F. Austin junior Dhanielly Quevedo; Central Arkansas senior Allison Murphy and Southeastern Louisiana junior Renee Villarreal.last_img read more

Softball: March 28 Scoreboard

first_imgMcNeese State 13, Abilene Christian 6Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 1, Stephen F. Austin 0Houston Baptist 7, UIW 0Lamar 4, Northwestern State 3Sam Houston State 8, Southeastern Louisiana 3Central Arkansas 4, Nicholls 3 Forrest led the Central Arkansas offense, going a perfect 3-for-3 from the plate with a double and a home run, while Taylor went 2-for-4 with three RBI. Morris and leftfielder Hayley Parkerson paced the Nicholls attack, each going 2-for-3 with an RBI. Lamar built a 3-0 lead after five innings only to see Northwestern state rally with three runs in the top of the sixth to knot things up. The Bearkats, now 9-21 for the year and 2-9 in Southland play, out-hit the Lions 10-5. The total included four doubles and two home runs. Southeastern Louisiana had won four of their last five games coming into the contest including two wins over the SHSU women in the opening doubleheader of the three-game Southland series Friday. Kylee Studioso (18-4) overcame a rough first innings that saw her allow two runs on two hits to limit the Colonels to a single run on five hits over the remaining six innings. She finished the day with six strikeouts and a walk. Hannah Haydel (10-6) took the loss for Nicholls, allowing four runs on eight hits and three walks while striking out five. Smith also picked up the win to improve to 9-3 on the season. She gave up six runs on six hits in six innings, ending the game with six strikeouts and four walks.  Central Arkansas 4, Nicholls 3CONWAY, Ark. – The Central Arkansas Bears continued their run of come-from-behind wins on Saturday, scoring two runs in the bottom of the seventh to remain perfect in Southland Conference play with a 4-3 win over Nicholls. Herman went 2-for-4 with a game-best four RBIs as she hit a grand slam in the second inning to lead HBU (9-19 overall, 3-9 SLC). Nicole Shedd had a game-high three hits in four at-bats with two RBIs. Victoria Granchelli led all players with two runs scored. Laci Belovsky (6-7) earned the complete-game win in the circle, as she allowed just four hits and one walk with three strikeouts. She has three complete-game shutouts on the season, two coming this series. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 1, Stephen F. Austin 0CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – Sophomore Jessica Mendez ripped a two-out RBI single to center field to score senior Mickayla Cochran in the bottom of the sixth to lift the Texas A&M-Corpus Christi softball team to a 1-0 victory over Stephen F. Austin today in the final game of the series. The Islanders (9-21-1, 4-8 SLC) earned their fourth shutout win of the season and their second straight Southland Conference series victory.   Shannon Sain and Brynn Baca had two hits apiece for Lamar. Sain extended her school record of reaching base safely to 23 straight games. Piancastelli answered the ACU homer with a three-run shot of her own to left center field for her 13th home run of the season and third of the series for an 11-6 lead. Leadoff hitter Casey Cromwell opened the bottom of the seventh by drawing a walk from Northwestern State reliever Mikayla Brown (4-1). Cromwell didn’t stay on first long, as Lamar’s Sarah Ragsdale put down a bunt that was fielded by Brown, whose throw sailed into the outfield, allowing Cromwell to sprint around the bases with the winning run. Belovsky had a no-hitter going until Alex Alonzo hit a one-out single to right field in the top of the fourth. – Return to Top – Abilene Christian (6-24, 2-10 SLC) scored two runs in the bottom half of the inning to cut the McNeese lead to 3-2. Two more runs crossed the plate for McNeese in the second via a two RBI single up the middle by Marisa Taunton for a 5-2 McNeese lead. Smith capped the McNeese scoring off with her second career home run and second of the game with a two run blast to right center in the seventh to give McNeese the 13-6 win. After ACU scored a run in the third, McNeese outscored ACU 8-3 in the final four innings. Brown took the loss in relief, allowing two hits and one run, which was unearned. – Return to Top – Cochran went 2-for-3 to lead the Islanders’ bats while junior Cosette Hernandez and sophomore Brittney Morse each tallied one hit apiece to extend their hitting streak to seven games. Junior Dani Tefft, senior Hayley Galloway and sophomore Mackinzee Griebel also joined Mendez with one hit apiece. The Islanders’ bats outhit the Ladyjacks, 8-3. – Return to Top – Central Arkansas (22-8, 10-0 SLC) evened the score in the fifth inning. Following a strikeout to start the inning, third baseman Sam Forrest got the Bears on the board, launching her seventh home run of the season over the fence in left-centerfield to cut the Nicholls lead to 2-1. Right fielder Briana Whisenhunt followed Forrest with a single and a stolen base, before catcher Jessie Taylor ripped a single through the left side of the infield to score Whisenhunt from second and knot the score at 2-2. HBU plays a three-game series at Stephen F. Austin Friday and Saturday, April 3 and 4 with a doubleheader Friday. First pitch both days is set for a 1 p.m. start. Sarah Allison singled to through the left side and scored on a double to right center by Jennie Kieval to give Sam Houston a 6-1 lead. A&M-Corpus Christi’s bats kept battling and in the top of the sixth Cochran started things off with an infield single before senior Lindsey Lyles did her job to advance Cochran to second with a sacrifice bunt. After a fly out by Galloway, Mendez stepped to the plate and blasted a RBI single to center field to score Cochran and put the Islanders on the board. Griebel followed with a groundout to end the inning. Four different players led Incarnate Word (3-26, 0-12) with a hit. Sarah Leal (0-4) started in the circle and took the loss, as she gave up four hits and two runs in 1.2 innings. Brooke DuBois allowed six hits, four earned runs, and one walk with one strikeout in the final 4.1 innings. ACU scored three runs in the bottom of the inning off a three-run home run by Peyton Hedrick, cutting the McNeese lead to 8-6. McNeese scored at least one run in all but one inning and ended the game with 11 hits. The Cowgirls opened the game with three runs in the first on a two RBI triple by Vincent and a RBI ground out by Langner. “We showed a lot of character coming back and playing the way we did today,” Bruder said. “Those are the types of games we are going to have to play if we want to be a championship-caliber team.” “I was just trying to play normal softball and move the runner over to second,” Bruder said. “I never expected that would be the game-winner.” Quinn struck out two and walked only three of the 29 batters she faced. Her complete game marked only the eighth for the SHSU pitching staff this year.center_img HBU put a five-spot in the bottom of the second, highlighted by Herman’s blast. Prior to that, Shedd’s RBI single got the Huskies on the board as it scored Madison Vonhagel. Napoli pitched a complete game allowing eight hits and three earned runs. She walked one and struck out five, tying a career high. The victory salvaged the final game of a three-game series for Lamar (17-13 overall, 10-2 Southland), which had dropped a doubleheader to Northwestern State (20-13, 10-1) on Friday. The Islanders will continue Southland Conference play when they travel to Huntsville, Texas, to take on Sam Houston State in a three-game series starting on Friday, April 3. The Bears and the Colonels will close out the series with a doubleheader tomorrow. The day’s first game will begin at noon. Lamar 4, Northwestern State 3BEAUMONT, Texas – In a game between two of the top hitting teams in the Southland Conference, the Lamar Lady Cardinals used a walk-off bunt to claim a 4-3 win over visiting Northwestern State on Saturday. Carter retired the first four Ladyjacks she faced before giving up her first walk of the game. The Islanders put up the first hit of the game in the bottom of the first when Tefft nailed a one-out single through the middle. The Islanders kept striking as they recorded a hit in each of the next three innings but were unable to bring any runs across. Then in the bottom of the fifth Griebel and Hernandez hit consecutive infield singles but the Ladyjacks pulled out the jam retiring the next three Islanders. Hannah Welch (2-3) registered the loss for SFA in six innings. She allowed eight hits and one run. McNeese will host Louisiana-Lafayette in a single game on Wednesday, April 1 at 6 p.m. After Northwestern State got a runner on with one out in the seventh, Lamar starter Laura Napoli (12-7) struck out the four and five hitters in the Northwestern State lineup to set up the improbable finish in the bottom of the seventh. Smith helped her cause in the circle by giving the Cowgirls a 6-3 lead in the fourth with her first career home run. McNeese got two more runs in the fifth on RBI’s by Tori Yanitor and another RBI by Langner for an 8-3 lead. The Lady Cardinals host UTSA in a nonconference doubleheader at 3 p.m. Wednesday before heading to Southeastern Louisiana for a three-game conference series on Friday and Saturday.- Return to Top – – Return to Top – Sophomore Liz Carter put together another strong performance in the Islanders’ circle limiting SFA (9-22, 2-9 SLC) to three hits on the day. She also allowed just one walk while picking up four strikeouts. The Austin, Texas native did not allow a hit until the top of the third when Brittany Lewis hit a single to center field. Nicholls re-took the lead with an infield single in the top of the seventh, but the Bears rallied in the bottom half of the frame. After Forrest led off the inning with a single to second base, she was lifted in favor of pinch runner Brianna McArthur, who moved to third base on a single from second baseman Sarah Bigej. Bigej advanced to second on the throw. Taylor came through in the clutch again for Central Arkansas, blasting a single off the fence in left field to drive in McArthur and Bigej and give the Bears the win. McNeese (25-12, 11-1 SLC) scored six of its 13 runs off two home runs by Rachel Smith and one by Erika Piancastelli. Smith had a career day at the plate by not only hitting her first career home run in the fourth inning. Smith hit her second career home run and second of the game in the seventh inning. Smith and Piancastelli both ended the day with three RBI’s apiece. Jessica Slater and Allysa Garcia began a five-run third inning for the Kats with consecutive doubles. After a Castillo walk, Adams blasted a shot over the fence in left center to up her career totals to 37 home runs and 129 RBIs. Both stand as Sam Houston’s all-time high marks. Houston Baptist 7, UIW 0HOUSTON, Texas – Behind senior 1B Melissa Herman’s bat and junior pitcher Laci Belovsky’s arm, HBU softball completed the series sweep over visiting Incarnate Word with a 7-0 victory Saturday afternoon from Husky Field. – Return to Top – The Lions added runs in the third and fourth on a sacrifice fly and a home run by Lacey Fritz. Angelica Gonzales and Alexis Garcia brought in two more runs with doubles in the top of the seventh. Tiffany Castillo got things started for Sam Houston with a lead-off home run to left field in the second inning. SLU tied the contest at a run apiece with an RBI single in the bottom of the second. Sam Houston State 8, Southeastern Louisiana 3HUNTSVILLE, Texas – Meme Quinn posted her fourth complete game of the year in the circle and Hillary Adams blasted her 37th career home run to lead Sam Houston to an 8-3 softball victory over Southeastern Louisiana Saturday. The Colonels (17-12, 5-5 SLC) struck first, getting an RBI triple from shortstop Brooke Morris to take a 1-0 lead. Following a walk, Nicholls executed a double-steal to push the lead to 2-0. Also picking up two hits in the game along with Smith and Piancastelli was Emily Vincent and Lauren Langner. McNeese State 13, Abilene Christian 6ABILENE, Texas – McNeese softball bounced back from its first conference loss of the season with a 13-6 rubber game victory over Abilene Christian Saturday to take the series 2-1. SFA threatened in the final frame as Taylor Fraccastoro led off the frame with a single to left field and Shalie Day advanced her to second with a sacrifice bunt. Carter however settled in and retired the side to help the Islanders secure the win. “I’d have never guessed this game would be won on a bunt,” said Lamar coach Holly Bruder, who coached her 600th career game. “We played well today, and I thought we deserved the win.” Shedd recorded her second RBI of the game in the bottom of the sixth, as she smacked a single to center that allowed Shay Orsak to cross home. Moments later, with V. Granchelli at third, the Huskies pulled a double steal, as the Cardinals tried to get Shedd at second and V. Granchelli was able to score to give the Huskies a 7-0 lead. Sam Houston returns to action in a three-game Southland series versus Texas A&M-Corpus Christi at the Softball Complex in Huntsville next Friday and Saturday.last_img read more

Maryland Single-Sales Factor Bill Introduced

first_imgA Maryland bill proposes changing the state’s standard corporate income tax apportionment formula to a single-sales factor formula. The bill has been introduced in the Maryland Senate.If enacted, the new standard apportionment formula would apply to tax years beginning after 2017.Current Three-Factor FormulaThe current standard formula is a three-factor formula (sales, property, and payroll), with a double-weighted sales factor.S.B. 1090, as introduced in the Maryland Senate on February 12, 2018Login to read more tax news on CCH® AnswerConnect or CCH® Intelliconnect®.Not a subscriber? Sign up for a free trial or contact us for a representative.last_img

Why Nation States Hack Personal Information

first_imgUS Office of Personnel Management (OPM) recently announced a massive data breach, containing very personal and private data of government and military personnel.  The stolen data was originally gathered to process security clearances and contains a plethora of background information, including criminal records, mental conditions, drug usage, veteran status, birthdates, social security numbers, pay histories and pension figures, insurance data, financial records, home addresses, contacts, and other profile data.  Millions of records in total were stolen, for current and previous government workers, contractors, and partners.  Investigators concluded the attack was conducted by another nation state.  This leads to the question of why would another nation launch such an attack and how will they use such personal information to their advantage?  The answers might be shocking.Unlike cybercriminals, who would be interested in opening lines of credit, filing fictions tax refunds, creating false identities, siphoning financial assets, and fraudulently charging on accounts, nation states have different motivations which drive their actions.  Nation states are interested in influencing policies in their favor across the globe, boosting national economic strength, military power projection, enhancing intelligence gathering capabilities, and protecting themselves from foreign attempts to do the same against them.For centuries, one of the best ways to accomplish these goals has been by influencing, manipulating, or outright controlling important people in other countries.  Employing tactics to achieve such lofty goals requires two things.  First, key foreigners with the necessary power or access must be identified.  Secondly, the means to best influence them must be determined.  History has shown that with both pieces to the puzzle, governments can maneuver in advantageous ways to achieve nothing short of world change.   Many nations have elaborate infrastructures and organizations dedicated to these goals.  They use a variety of Open Source Intelligence (OSINT), Human Intelligence (HUMINT), and Cyber Intelligence (CYBINT) methods to gather insights and data.  Nowadays, OSINT is very effective and with the meteoric rise in social media sharing and personal applications, has become a highly productive tool at providing personal details of a populace.  However, the deepest secrets and most private information is still difficult to come by.  CYBINT can fill the gaps and provide the hard to come by intelligence and personal connections which are highly valuable for these campaigns.  Profile IntelligenceWith the wealth of personal data fleeced from OPM, an attacker can begin building a database of interlocking profiles.  The result is a network showing people, connections, access, knowledge, and spheres of influence.  This information will be blended with any other high confidence data, garnered from other sources, to paint a better picture of individuals who may be of interest.  They will likely be looking for those who are active in local and national politics, drive or enforce inter-agency government policies, leaders and technical advisors to the military, those who possess influence in the decisions of others, have internal access to valuable data, are part of the offensive/defensive intelligence apparatus, and people who have earned the trust of those in power.These people become targets of focus and opportunity for various types of influencing tactics, including bribery, blackmail, marketing, facilitation of revenge, social pressure, ethical conundrums, retribution of justice, and demonstrations of patriotism.   Professional manipulators can be very creative in how to position and push people in certain directions.Methods of InfluenceThese profiles are also intended to give insights to how people can be motivated and controlled.  Building a collective social picture can show how key individuals are influenced.  It may highlight the respected close community around a target who offer advice and guidance.  Past indiscretions can provide an understanding of how someone is vulnerable to situations involving drugs, money, sex, ideology, or fame.  This can be exactly what is needed by manipulators.  Personal and private information can be embarrassing or give the necessary signs of weakness.  Some people can be blackmailed, threatened, tricked, cheated, bribed, or flipped to provide information, access, or facilitate the influence of others.  A cascade effect can take place as people are linked.  In rare cases, some assets may be groomed to become direct action operatives, where the risks, impacts, and rewards can be much higher.  Achieving success is no easy task for nation state orchestrators.  Private information is a highly prized chip in this game.  The more sensitive, revealing, and humiliating the data, the more valuable it is to those who plan to use it as leverage for their benefit.Beyond the targeting of individuals, such data can be valuable in other ways.  To disrupt the operational effectiveness of an organization, key personnel can be affected with campaigns to publicly embarrass or undermine renewals for top clearances therefore causing gaps or delays in the work of important positions.  This can also provide advancement avenues for others who may be more conducive to support the attacker’s objectives.Compromising computer systems becomes much easier.  In the cybersecurity realm, private information and a list of known contacts makes phishing attacks near impossible to defend against.  Emails, texts, attachments, and files can appear to be sent from friends, family, coworkers, academia, and professional colleagues with no good way for the average person to discern the difference between legitimate and malicious, until it is too late.  These phishing attacks can bypass system defenses and allow hackers to gain access to computers, networks, databases, and cloud environments.  Follow-on attacks in this manner should be expected, both at home and work.  Infecting and controlling devices of people with security clearances is an opportunity not likely passed-up by nation state attackers.The data itself has value and can be sold, traded, or given to a variety of other groups.  Terrorists, allies, political rivals, in-country revolutionaries, radicals, or other nation state intelligence agencies would be likely interested parties.  There are national economic advantages as well.  Discretely providing profile data to state-owned companies can greatly improve their business negotiations, bidding, pricing, employee recruiting activities, and overall competiveness abroad.  This can boost domestic economies while undermining foreign positions.   Politically, in a bit of irony, such attacks may also drive the desire of attacked nations to establish international accords governing global cybersecurity practices with their attackers.  In essence, hacking can motivate governments to come to the negotiation table and put them at a disadvantage in the agreement of terms.    With the loss of millions of highly personal records, the outlook is not a pretty picture.  Time will tell which of these tactics will be employed by those who took OPM data.  But keep in mind such spycraft has been around for thousands of years.  The intents and purposes are not new, just the scale, tactics, and tools have changed to include the information rich world of cyber.  My heart goes out to those whose data was part of the recent breach, their families, friends, and associates.  In a very personal way, they are all now part of a larger geopolitical game.  Take all necessary precautions to protect your name, reputation, finances, history, and honor.  Although the attack cannot be undone, governments around the world can learn from these situations and institute better controls, data policies, and political responses to protect future generations.last_img read 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