Kaspersky Red October virus and MIT continued

This is a continuation of the prior post.  Again this is speculation and hypothesis on an issue of public importance.  As always, when we talk about individual cases or persons, there is no accusation of wrong doing.  We are simply raising those as issues or possibilities.  This is not always clearly expressed.  This is why all sentences or statements should be restated as questions, particularly in such cases.

In the last episode, we heard that a lab in Russia was claiming that some unknown entity had used a virus for 5 years around the world and that it targeted personal information of researchers and government officials.  (Maybe journalists too?)

We also have this document Darrell Duffie “Dynamic Asset Pricing Theory” “Provisional Manuscript” dated October 5, 1999.  I encountered a virus that Norton Utilities indicated while downloading it.  I think it was from the website in Ukraine, .ua.  It is also in websites in Russia, China and one in Indiana. Some of those in Russia are official pages like mechmath which is the Math Department of Moscow State University.  They study plagiarism in Western countries in math, economics, business, finance, and physics for the Russian government to use in its efforts.

The Red October virus helps get identifying information off of a hard drive of a researcher we are told by Kaspersky.  This can also include who they send email to or receive it from.  They can build up a picture of the person.

In the case of academics, plagiarism cases become known and people choose to join in on them.  This can mean citing the plagiarist instead of the plagiarism victim.  It can also mean pilfering a victim’s work, even though it is already published.

In the case of Beaglehole Tenney, it was published in 1991 and 1992, and years later major universities like Harvard were publishing as new and original material from these papers.  We shall get into that in a future episode in more detail.

(Remember our rule that specific cases and individuals are not being accused, even if the wording is that way for brevity or comprehensibility.)

As a possible example of this being recognized at Stanford by Kenneth Singleton, a coauthor with Duffie:


Term Structure Dynamics in Theory and Reality – Stanford University

File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat – Quick View
by Q Dai – 2003 – Cited by 319Related articles
factor central-tendency model of r proposed by Beaglehole and Tenney. (1991) and Balduzzi, Das, and Foresi (1998). The development of affine models of


(Again, no specific or general accusation is being made here against Balduzzi et al or Duffie, Singleton or Dai or others mentioned.)

Note the Balduzzi, Das and Foresi paper was published by Harvard in 1998.  That was also an NBER paper.  That means they were paid money by NBER for it.  The working paper is at NBER here:


Note the Singleton paper is an NBER paper.  When Larry Summers gave his talk at MIT in January 2005 while US v. Harvard, Shleifer and Hay was still pending, it was to an NBER audience.  A Harvard female law prof had an NBER grant at the time and had a Ph.D. in econ from MIT.   Her husband had a Ph.D. from MIT using advanced math. So Summers might have wanted to threaten her to keep quiet while the USAO Mass was investigating Harvard. That was by Assistant US Attorney Sara Miron Bloom, a different AUSA than the ones on the US v. Aaron Swartz case.  Note this paper from Stanford and NYU was dated 2003.

Kenneth Singleton was also listed on the Ph.D. thesis of the Chinese student at Stanford who go the Ph.D. thesis whose contents overlapped with the Tenney paper on dynamic programming solutions from 1995.  That paper was cited in the Duffie 1999 Provisional Manuscript.  Singleton and Duffie were the two main advisers on the Chinese student’s Ph.D.thesis at Stanford.

So Russia might like to know whether Singleton and Dai have downloaded the provisional manuscript document since they posted it in 2005.  This would help them get an idea of how much Singleton and Dai knew of that incident.  Have they emailed people about it?  Who.  These are things Russia would like to know.  This is why it would put the Red October virus or one like it on these websites.  China too apparently is doing this.

(This information can be of use to network administrators at the universities, government research labs, financial institutions, or even judicial networks since some judges are current lecturers or former profs.)

Russia and China cooperated together in the 1940s on this type of work for getting atomic secrets.  So they may maintain some type of cooperation.  Or they may just be rivals.  Other countries have picked up on this like India.  Russia and China would like to know how much India knows of this and of their specific activities.  Obviously, then Pakistan needs to know.  Pakistan does not have the direct assets in the US that India does, but it has some, and some from way back.  That is, professors or people in financial services or IMF and World Bank.

After the Swartz suicide on Friday, January 11, 2013, the denial of service attack against MIT was January 13, 2013.  This is short notice for Anonymous.  More likely is that Russia wanted to remove items from the MIT network and used the outage as cover.  Or some other country.  The reason removal is more likely is that Swartz is a high profile person for using the MIT network, and so his death might refocus attention on that network.   So Russia might have wanted to remove items.  For example, remove the Red October virus.  Perhaps it has a removal command for itself.

Those who have knowledge of the history of this at MIT, Harvard and Stanford might want to tell what they know.  This meaning plagiarism and Russia trying to use it.

People who might possibly have information relevant to such an inquiry (not an accusation of misconduct) might include

Kenneth Arrow Stanford

Darrell Duffie Stanford

Kenneth Singleton Stanford

Myron Scholes Stanford (and LTCM)

George Constantinides University of Chicago

John Campbell Harvard

Lawrence Lessig Harvard

Robert C. Merton MIT (and LTCM)

Franklin Fisher MIT

Daniel Rubinfeld Berkeley

Karl Shell Cornell

John Yoo Berkeley

Ben Bernanke Federal Reserve (Princeton)

Janet L. Yellen Federal Reserve (Berkeley)

Jeremy Stein Federal Reserve (Harvard)




Howard Shelanski  Chief Economist FTC (Berkeley)

Lanny Breuer USDOJ Head Criminal Division

Eric Holder Attorney General

Elena Kagan US Supreme Court (Dean of HLS while some of this was happening)

Larry Summers Harvard

Stanley Fischer, Israel Central Bank

Barack Obama (He rehired Larry Summers after this was public on the Internet and his wife received 300,000 dollars a year from University of Chicago after he became a senator.)

LTCM and DE Shaw traded Russian government bonds in the 1990s possibly on the belief that Russia had embarrassing information on Larry Summers and Stanley Fischer who controlled the IMF loans to Russia during the 1990s.  DE Shaw then paid Summers 5 million a year after he stepped down as president of Harvard.  After that, he was rehired by Obama at US government.  Despite this information being on the Internet, the FBI and USDOJ were apparently ok with it.

The USAO Mass may have been frustrated at this and asked the FBI to investigate and it refused.  The frustration at DOJ HQ and the FBI HQ not acting may have then been transferred to Aaron Swartz in US v. Aaron Swartz.  USAO Mass couldn’t investigate Harvard and MIT for concealing info on this from 1997 to 2005 and couldn’t investigate Summers and the DC crowd, so they took it out on Aaron Swartz.

Russia has monitored this situation at MIT and Harvard and then when Swartz committed suicide did a denial of service attack to cover removal of their virus, or perhaps to install a different one.  Or perhaps they have an insider.  Or it may be some other country like China, India, Pakistan, or Iran.

The above is speculation and hypotheses on a matter of public interest.  Please restate as questions.  No accusation of misconduct is intended against any individual in this post or any other communication, written or verbal.


About New Math Done Right

Author of Pre-Algebra New Math Done Right Peano Axioms. A below college level self study book on the Peano Axioms and proofs of the associative and commutative laws of addition. President of Mathematical Finance Company. Provides economic scenario generators to financial institutions.
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