The Curious Case of Kellep Charles: A Ligatt Propaganda Story
On January 1st another “press release” came out over the Internet claiming that Kellep Charles, by all accounts a certified and serious individual in the information security world, had been appointed to the board of directors at Ligatt Security. On the Ligatt site as seen above in cached form (the page is now a 404 error) it names Kellep as a new member of the board. Now, this is nothing new with regard to people being touted as being added to the board. However, in this case, Kellep himself as others before, did not know that he was on the board as you can see by his surprise in a tweet below:
It seems that Kellep may have indeed offered to work with Ligatt to “clean up his image” but no sooner had he done this, then the Ligatt PR machine went into action and posted on the site and newswire that they had a new board member. What is most insidious here is that Kellep, as I said above is a multiply certified and seemingly above board member of the security community who’s reputation could be sullied by working with Evans and Ligatt because of their misdeeds in the past. What’s more, it is VERY telling that Kellep states that he was willing to “advise” Ligatt to help “clean up their image”
Ok, Kellep.. Over here, camera 3… Yeah, umm I appreciate your wanting to help Greggy, but, now do you see the real trouble with Greg and his little company? I suspect you do now, but here it is again… He is a charlatan and a con man as well as a bully. He will use anyone and anything to get him to be the center of attention as well as become a wealthy player.
You have been duped and he has tried to play upon your good name to better his ignominious one in the community at large.
So, now the clean up goes on. Ligatt has seemingly redacted the press release from the Internet (can’t seem to locate a prnewswire release, his usual propaganda tool) but what Ligatt fails to learn is the same thing that every teenage girl on the Internet learns post getting blitzed and naked for the camera; “There is no redacting everything from the Internet” It’s out there buddy and there is no pulling this one back. This however brings up a key point in the Ligatt play book, and it is exceedingly relevant to today’s “wikileaked” world. You see, Ligatt is trying to pull his own version of 1984 by not only using classical propaganda routines, but also those of redaction and modern spin. The funniest thing though is that Gregory and Ligatt are so spectacularly BAD at it! With every “release” on PR news wire and elsewhere, Greg thinks that he can re-spin his Ligatt Security presence into what he perceives it to be in his own delusional world view;
That of a global juggernaut of computer security and that he is a player, a mover and shaker.
Oh Greggy… Polishing a turd will only get you a shiny turd.
As for Kellep, I am sorry that you got dragged into this whole mess. You do not deserve to be lambasted because of your kindness, but, here is the warning that might nudge you to keep your wits about you in this business. There’s a lot of snake oil salesmen out there and this guy is a prime example. So in future, if you decide that you want to give any counsel to Gregory, then I should think that that counsel be to come clean and really work toward being an “expert” instead of just playing one on TV.
If I see you at Shmoocon I will buy you a beer… Cuz dude, I think you’re gonna need one after this debacle is over.
EDIT! Hat tip to iAlbert who located a copy of the Press Release! See Greggy, you can’t redact the Intertubes!