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Roberts Space Industries ®






October 18th 2017

TRACKER: Chaos in Kiel

Sponsored by WillsOp

Welcome to TRACKER, the Bounty Hunters Guild’s official show on the spec. I’m your host Garret Coliga. Glad you joined us today. We’ve got lots of important stuff to cover, so let’s not beat around the bush.

We’re going to start with the news everyone needs to know. Anyone currently working a bounty in Kiel needs to contact the Guild right away. There’s a chance you’re chasing the wrong target.

It appears that the Kiel branch had their systems breached. No word on the extent of the damage, but its effects are already being felt. Yesterday, the Guild noticed what’s being called “an alarming spike in false-positive collars.”

The issue first came to light when numerous elite bounties suddenly popped onto scanners across Kiel. Guild members scrambled, ready and raring to catch targets not seen in the system for years. It wasn’t long before reports of false-positives flooded the Guild’s comms.

Turned out the likes of Carlo ‘Crowbar’ Ellingsworth and Emma ‘Necktie’ Dudeney hadn’t suddenly come out of hiding to shop at the local Casaba. Instead, the regtags associated with many of the Guild’s bounties had been replaced by those for clean ships, leading to numerous innocent and unsuspecting people being wrongfully apprehended.

The Kiel Guild branch has apologized for the incident and opened an investigation into the matter. Meanwhile, Bounty Hunters Guild administrators across the UEE are scanning their systems to ensure they weren’t similarly breached. So far, the incident appears to be contained to Kiel.

Now, most people erroneously captured were immediately released once their real IDs were confirmed, but not everything went smoothly. Civil rights watchdog groups have condemned the tactics Guild members used to apprehend what they believed were high profile targets. In one unfortunate incident, a woman leaving her daughter’s sataball game suffered a broken arm and three broken ribs when she was incorrectly picked up by a Guild-licensed bounty hunter. In another, a family of five were held against their will and interrogated for hours before finally being released.

Joining me now from Kiel is Guild representative Lian Bolyard. He’s here to comment on the current chaos and update us on anything we need to know. Thanks for taking the time to join the show.

Lian Bolyard: I wish it could be under better circumstances, Garret.

I hear you, Bones. It’s been a few, hasn’t it?

Lian Bolyard: No doubt. Believe the last time we crossed paths was at that DefCon panel back in ’43.

Unbelievable how time flies. Well, let’s get into it. What’s the latest?

Lian Bolyard: We’ve taken the Guild network offline in Kiel as smarter folks than me try to figure out exactly what happened. That means we’re not issuing bounties, so at least the problem isn’t getting any worse. Of course, the system being down means we also can’t process outstanding bounties. To help prevent more people from being incorrectly held, we are asking Guild members to take anyone they pick up to Horus or Hadrian, which so far seems unaffected by the issue.

I’d also like to say that we really need everyone’s help to spread the word about what’s going on. I know some trackers get so caught up in the hunt that they tune out all the noise. We need to get the message to those Guild members before there are any more mix-ups with innocent people getting snagged off their ships.

You heard the man. Let’s get the word out, folks. If you happen to know an associate currently working a case in Kiel, please encourage them to confirm that their bounty was issued prior to breach. They can check what dates are affected by comming the Guild directly, right?

Lian Bolyard: Absolutely. We apologize for the issue and appreciate your patience and understanding while we get things back to normal. We’ll be sure to let everyone know once our system is secured and back online. Until then, it’s probably best to either hold tight or look for work in another system.

Any idea how much longer it’ll be until things get sorted? Are we talking hours … days?

Lian Bolyard: No idea. Right now, all I can say is that we’re hoping it’s sooner rather than later.

Now, from my understanding, this seems like a very sophisticated attack. Since someone went to a lot of trouble to do this, you gotta wonder what they hoped to achieve. Did they merely want to spread chaos or was there a more sinister goal? Are there any prevailing theories about what motivated it?

Lian Bolyard: A few.

Care to elaborate on any of them?

Lian Bolyard: Honestly, Garret, right now the ‘why’ behind it all isn’t as important as shoring up our network and getting it back online without any worse unfortunate incidents happening in the meantime. I’d be more than happy to speculate on motivations after we get a handle on the situation.

Understandable. Bet you’re thanking your lucky stars that this didn’t happen during next month’s Intergalactic Aerospace Expo.

Lian Bolyard: To tell you the truth, the thought of this happening during the expo had me tossing and turning last night. Didn’t sleep a wink. That’s why I want to make sure we get the system back online ASAP, so we can focus on getting to the bottom of the situation and ensure that it doesn’t happen again.

Sounds good, Bones. I appreciate you taking the time outta your hectic schedule to speak with us today. Stay in touch so we can keep everyone up-to-date on the system’s status.

Don’t go anywhere, folks. Up next, we’ll be speaking with the Guild’s own legal advisor Christy Tabares about “false-positive collars” and what you need to do if you apprehend the wrong person. That and more when TRACKER returns.

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