Posts Tagged Ahmad Zahra

Press Release – City of Fullerton – Notice of Data Breach

FULLERTON, California (May 13, 2020) – The City of Fullerton (the “City”) announced today that we’re too dumb to use Dropbox and that led to the internet having access to things we’d rather you not know about – such a pervert cop filming up skirts and having child porn on his phone while stationed at Fullerton High School, a Lieutenant in Fullerton PD having not one, but two, Internal Affairs investigations against her that we dropped in order to bypass Public Records laws (SB1421 specifically), employees stealing things and us cocking up the investigation so badly that they got away with it, a City Employee overturning a Parks Vehicle while likely under the influence and on and on and on.

This isn’t new, in fact most of it came to light against our will almost a year ago so none of this is recent but we’re calling it a “recent event” that “may have impacted the security of personal information of some City residents and employees” because that sounds better than “our lawyers, who we refuse to fire and stand behind 100% are too stupid to use Dropbox and they totally screwed the pooch”.

The City became aware of posts on a public website, we all know which one but we won’t say because reasons, which contained confidential City information – see the list above. The city immediately began throwing money around trying to figure out who to blame and how we can get away with avoiding any responsibility. During the City’s investigation, it discovered that we are in fact too stupid to use Dropbox. We’re calling Dropbox “an internal data storage account” because it sounds better but yeah it was Dropbox. We gave out the website (CityofFullerton.com/outbox) on multiple occasions, to countless people, made it a legal public record and then sued some guys and a blog because they allegedly clicked links we put their names on in that Dropbox account – again that we told them about.

We gave them access and ignored that we had total control over who could see what and then our crack team of bureaucrats, lawyers and IT professionals somehow missed that we were too dumb to figure out Dropbox from about 2016 through June 21, 2019. The investigation further revealed the data included copies of emails and attachments that contained certain protected information. Information we never should have put online in an unsecured fashion but you don’t pay us the big bucks and for our lifetime pensions so we’ll be smart – you do it because we extort it out of you by taking away your toys (the library, roads, parks, etc) if you don’t give in to our mercenary demands. As a precaution, the entire contents of the Dropbox account were reviewed to identify the information that may have been accessible online for all the world to access. The City provided written notice to those individuals whose information was found on Dropbox. However, a small number of files we uploaded to Dropbox between 2016-2019 we totally deleted and therefore were not recovered and were unable to be reviewed and now we have no idea who’s information we negligently put online for the whole world to find. Whoopsie.

What Information Was Involved? On October 25, 2019, a day after suing the FFFF blog over our cockup, the City provided written notice to a small number of individuals whose sensitive information was found on Dropbox despite knowing about it for months. However, because we’re dumb and deleted things, a small number of files we uploaded to the non-password protected, public facing Dropbox account (at CityOfFullerton.com/outbox) were not able to be recovered and now the City is providing this additional notification. The personal information that we may have totally put on Dropbox in the files we absolutely deleted may include your name, Social Security number, driver’s license number, payment card information, medical or health information, and/or passport number. However, the City is unable to confirm the contents of these files or whether sensitive information was present in these files because, again, we’re dumb and don’t pay attention to what all we put on Dropbox despite us giving that account out willy-nilly. Hey, we waste your money and you don’t say anything so we figured you wouldn’t mind if we did the same with your data.

What Are We Doing? Suing people to cover up our incompetency mostly. The City takes the security of our employee and citizen information very seriously. So seriously that The City put that information on a non-password protected, public facing Dropbox account (CityofFullerton.com/outbox) in violation of HIPPA, Dropbox Terms of Service, Legal Best Practices, Common Sense, etc. In The City’s diligence The City immediately secured the Dropbox account at issue by deleting everything because passwords and access controls are too hard for our IT department and lawyers to figure out despite The City maybe needing those things for our pending lawsuit and to find out what we put online. The City reviewed existing security measures as a byproduct of our Dropbox screwup and finding essentially none paid $541,000+ to a digital security expert to do what our IT department should have been doing all along –  ensuring the security of The City’s network and keeping our idiot lawyers off of Dropbox.

The City is also providing information about our stupidity and about the steps individuals can take to help safeguard personal information – basically just don’t trust The City to be competent.

In addition, the City is offering to spend more of your tax dollars to offer identity monitoring services through Kroll because nobody in The City pays a price even when it costs you over half a million dollars and counting.

What You Can Do. The City encourages individuals to remain vigilant against incompetent city staff and council members who would compromise your information while putting you at risk of identity
theft and fraud through gross negligence.

Under CA law, individuals are entitled to vote incompetent asshats out of office every election cycle and we strongly recommend throwing circus ringleader Jennifer Fitzgerald out on her ass along with Go-Along-To-Get-Along rejects Ahmad Zahra, Jesus Silva and Jan Flory should Flory’s corrupt self decide to grace us with another council run.

For More Information The City also encourages individuals to read our other press releases where we pretend that we didn’t get slapped down by the Appellate Court and that we’re winning this ridiculous case that we filed against our own watchdog citizens to cover our asses.

Again, at this time, there is no evidence that any information has been misused but we want to drag a few guys through the mud and hope that our infinite resources (your tax dollars which we’ll be taking more of soon) are enough to scare them into submission so we don’t ever have to take responsibility for our own government incompetence. After all, would YOU keep voting for City Council members (Fitzgerald, Zahra, Silva, Flory) who stood by lawyers as dumb as mentioned above OR who let a City Manager attack citizens in the courts and press while taking home $242,931.63 in 2019? We think not.

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The Cost of Suing Us

Yes, that is the answer!

Fullerton just “separated from employment” 150+ non-union part-time staff. Why? Because despite years of Mayor Jennifer Fitzgerald’s lies about a “Balanced Budget” and our mythical reserve fund – we had no plan for a rainy day.

During meetings, myself, David and others warned the City Council that a downturn was likely in the future and with CalPERS continually raising our pension costs we needed to be smarter financially.

Fitzy & Flory wanted none of that and spent like floozies in Vegas throwing every dollar we had at every uniform in sight with Silva, Chaffee and so on along for the ride.

Now here are we looking at a month of limited tax revenue and 150+ people lost their jobs with the city. 150+ positions aren’t being eliminated – no no no, they’ll tax us more to fill those again later and cry about not being to staff the libraries and parks to justify the new taxes/fees and whatever added costs to us they can cook up along the way. But 150+ people are now wondering how they’ll pay their bills.

But let me drive this home for you some more – the city is suing myself, David and this blog because we allegedly clicked some Dropbox links in an account they sent us and told the world about in PRRs. Remember, according to Kimberly Hall Barlow this isn’t about publishing or the 1st Amendment – this is about alleged theft and “hacking” because we allegedly clicked some Dropbox links.

In the process of investigating that alleged crime, the city found out that their network (which has fuckall to do with Dropbox) was incompetently setup and they hired an outside firm to fix it. This was the reason they claimed they waited to sue us for months on end – that they had to secure their network – which again has fuckall to do with Dropbox.

Glass Box Discussion

The firm they hired, Glass Box Technology, has a contract with the city for $60k/month not to exceed $500k.

Glass Box Contract

So far, according to the City Council approved Check Register, they’ve paid Glass Box $541,451.25 to date which is $41,451.25 over their “not to exceed” limit.

Glass Box Checks

That’s over half of a million dollars SO FAR because the City found out that they suck at running their own network as a BYPRODUCT of suing us which has nothing to do with what they allege we did. This was an unnecessary expense that has to come out of next year’s General Fund because it’s yet another major cockup for which nobody will be held accountable.

How many of those 150+ people wouldn’t need to be unemployed right now were it not for sheer incompetence in City Hall? Seems that $500k+ would have covered quite a few part timers.

Then we have the expense of our idiotic City Attorneys, Jones & Mayer. Since this nonsense started back in June with their Cease & Desist letters, the city has paid Jones & Mayer $891,074.49. We have no way to know how to split that up or what to attribute to the lawsuit against us because City Hall has a long history of lying about funding and hiding expenses in the wrong accounts. Just because something is coded to the Library, might not mean it has anything to do with the Library.

J&M Checks 2020

But if we assume that just 5% of their work product can be attributed to the lawsuit against us, and considering the reams of paper they keep filing with the courts we know their billable hours are stacking mile high, we can attribute approximately $44,553 to this stupid lawsuit. Seems to me that’s a few more part timers who could still be employed were it not for the malicious lawsuit being pursued by Fitzgerald, Flory, Silva and Zahra.

We don’t know how much the city has paid their other experts or consultants in their pursuit of the evil “hackers” who allegedly clicked Dropbox links – some with my name on them – but so far we know it’s pushing $500k+.

Where there’s smoke…

Remember this come election time & demand answers from these idiots on council who would rather spend your money, and it is your money, attacking us over their own stupidity than spend it providing the very services they’re elected to oversee in our city.

Shame on Fullerton. Shame on Mayor Fitzgerald. Shame on the City Council for always squandering your money pursuing their egos instead of your best interests. Sure, they’ll blame the need to “separate from employment” those 150+ people on this “global pandemic” – but that’s only because they constantly spend all of your money elsewhere while lying to you about our “balanced budget”.

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Appeals Court Slaps Fullerton… Again

Joshua by Spencer

Trying to look passed all of the bullshit the city has thrown at us

Twice now the City of Fullerton has managed to baffle a judge with bullshit and get the judge to issue a prior restraint against myself, David and this blog stopping us from publishing “secret city hall documents”.

Twice now the city has boasted of their win only to be slapped down by the CA Appellate Court.

First they spiked the football during a 05 November 2019 City Council meeting where hack & pretend-an-intellect Ahmad Zahra threw softballs at City Attorney Kimberly Barlow to support their lies & defamation. This was the meeting where they tacitly admitted to violating disclosure laws (The Brown Act) by not properly voting & disclosing said vote to sue us prior.

A week later the Appellate Court sided with us on the publishing gag & slapped it down.

The second time a judge granted a prior restraint the city ran to the North Orange County Chamber of Commerce who pretended to care about the newsworthiness of the case & they issued a Press Release. Said PR was basically just a hit-piece against us with a laughable lie by City Manager Ken Domer who hasn’t once tried to settle this case despite his bullshit postering about wanting to work with us to “bring it to a close”.

That time it took the Appellate Court 10 days to slap the publishing gag down. Not only did they stay the prior restraint – they took over the case entirely by accepting our appeal.

Now we’ll wait to see what happens next as the Appellate Court hears both sides & makes a ruling. Will they side with Fullerton who claims we “plundered” their public, widely available, known about & non-password protected Dropbox Account by virtue of allegedly clicking links that even literally had my name on them? Or will the Appellate Court laugh at Fullerton for trying to bury us with litigation, fees and threats all to cover the incompetence they’ve admitted to in their own arguments?

Time will tell and we’ll keep you updated.

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Jan Flory Knowingly Voted Against the 1st Amendment

JanFlory-Official

It’s not often that a sitting politician admits to violating the rights of the people but we’re seeing a lot of firsts here in Fullerton lately and the issue of ethics is no different.

Let us start by reminding the class that councilwoman Jan Flory is only currently on council because Ahmad Zahra sold out in record time and put her there. Despite Zahra’s peacocking and preening as a man of ethics and great concern for the Constitution and voting rights – he showed us early on that he’s an empty suit.

Now in an amusing twist of events it turns out that not only did Zahra and the council vote to kick our 1st Amendment rights in the teeth – his appointee Flory knew that what they were doing wasn’t going to hold up in the courts.

In a recent article [HERE] in the Voice of OC, Councilwoman Jan Flory said the following (emphasis added):

Councilwoman Jan Flory said while she respects the First Amendment, the privacy of city employees is also at stake. Like Whitaker, she said she couldn’t speak about the legal advice given to the Council during closed session.

I think that First Amendment rights trump everything else, but I believe that Kim Barlow has done a good job in that the city also wants to protect Mr. Ferguson’s First Amendment rights,” said Flory in a Nov. 8 phone interview.

She said the First Amendment isn’t the core issue.

“That’s not what’s at issue here. What’s at issue is he (Ferguson) obtained records that are private,” Flory said. “Or have some implications concerning the confidentiality of our city employees as well as members of the public.”

Flory also expected the publication gag order to get blocked, at least temporarily, she said.

“Was I shocked by it? No, not at all,” Flory said.

So Jan Flory, as a lawyer, expected the gag order to get blocked?

On what grounds could it possibly be blocked? On 1st Amendment grounds, perhaps?

Why? Because the gag order against publishing was and is an illegal prior restraint against the 1st Amendment and as a lawyer Jan Flory might be familiar with this particular point.

Now according to The Other Dick Jones™ at the last council meeting the entire council, Flory included, voted for this 1st Amendment violating gag order back in September despite Flory expecting it to be shot down.

There you have it folks.

Jan Flory “thinks that First Amendment rights trump everything else” but that didn’t stop her from voting to put the boot of government on the throat of OUR 1st Amendment rights when it suited the CYA needs of the city.

While fully expecting the courts to slap the city’s illegal SLAPP lawsuit/TRO – she voted against the 1st Amendment on 17 September 2019 and then did it again on 05 November 2019. I’m sorry Jan, but your postulating about the importance of the 1st Amendment is meaningless when you yourself voted against Freedom of the Press not once but twice.

You care about the 1st Amendment?

SureJan

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Why Keep Threatening Us?

For every problem that isn’t a nail, there’s a moron ready to swing a hammer.

20 Days ago FFFF got another threatening letter from the City that said if we don’t stop reporting news and telling the public the truth about what’s actually happening in their town, apparently there will be consequences.

We told them to kick rocks.

What really strikes us as odd is how hard the city works to solve real problems v make work problems.

If they’re willing to go after local journalists connected to a blog that city employees routinely insist that no one reads, one can’t help but wonder what wrath the city brings down on real problems.

Can we assume that the city also takes things like life safety issues impacting the public, police brutality and sexual misconduct, wasted tax dollars, theft by employees, recklass or perhaps drunk driving by employees, or total disregard for budget discipline, public trust, and basic fairness as seriously as they take shutting down transparency?

Oh wait, we don’t need to assume anything as we know exactly what kind of resources the city spends on those problems. None.

We know because we broke and covered those stories.

Maybe that’s what this is about. Maybe the City is tired of having a group of “chronic malcontents” embarrass them by telling the truth. Read the rest of this entry »

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Enjoy Downtown While it Lasts

Downtown Fullerton

Fullerton’s City Council last Tuesday, as expected, voted to change the rules governing how bars operate in the city in order to facilitate having more bars and making them more profitable.

The crux of the change is that it was too hard for staff to do their jobs, and for the Police Chief to stop rubber stamping permits, so the city needed to change the rules. This time they mean to enforce them unlike the last decade+ they promise… kind of… well not really.

Not one council member got an answer of who was in violation of what rules they were changing and why it was so hard for community development, code enforcement and the police to use a checklist to sort it out and in fact Ted White’s answers on how Conditional Use Permits work negated his own arguments of the Title 15 change. But again, council was too inept and/or lazy to follow the logic of the change or to ask any real questions per the norm.

The council ALSO voted to launch a pilot program, which we all know will be permanent, for paid parking in downtown. This is a data driven program tracking who comes and goes how often and how long they stay based on license plate data. As we heard at the meeting the whole point was data, data, data and more data. You will be tracked and your data will likely be sold. It’s so data driven that the vendor, staff and council want you to punch in where you park even when you don’t have to pay for parking – just because you WANT to be tracked.

Data Breach

When council asked who owned the servers the vendor claimed it was a “cloud based server” and that’s where the questions stopped. We don’t know what data is kept, where it is kept, which servers are used or who our travel data is being sold to – all because council couldn’t be bothered to ask.

It was a pathetic meeting full of incompetence, malfeasance and laughable gaffs. The Other Dick Jones™ got torn into by both Fitzgerald and Zahra for how they can/can’t handle an agenda item and when the city clerk offered helpful info the council just blanker her. It was probably the worst example of governing I’ve seen in years.

Individually the council members didn’t do themselves any favors in the integrity or intelligence departments. Read the rest of this entry »

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Downtown Rules Apply or They Don’t

welcome-to-fullerton

I’m in Downtown Fullerton as I type this post. Specifically I’m at an office space some friends and I are thinking about renting for our podcasts, the same office space I used for the live video on Flory’s appointment. I’m here because I wanted to reshoot that video owing to the technical and delivery problems of my first ham-handed efforts and I wanted to see how practical this space is for our purposes at night.

I knew the train schedules and checked the sound levels with a decibel meter for quality and started figuring out some of the technical things I wanted or needed to change. Then 8pm hit and I encountered something I hadn’t really planned around – live music emanating from across the transportation center.

Let’s get to brass tacks here; it was coming from the Slidebar – a favorite punching bag of commenters here on FFFF and some of the people I know around town. But this is a problem for me because generally I LIKE the Slidebar. I know Jeremy and he’s always been civil with me. I know Josh and he allowed me to take photos inside the bar back when I shot bands for a hobby. I have little desire to bother people I have no beef with personally and who have been cool with me historically.

SlidebarMotto

When I go after things I try to focus on issues and the people I think are causing the problems. I spill a lot of digital ink railing against Fitzgerald, Silva, now Zahra and so forth because I think they’re bad leaders and corrupt politicians – but I try to leave their personal businesses and family lives out of my posts, comments and claims as best I can because that’s not where my interests rest unless those things prove to be connected to some form of political corruption, grandstanding or malfeasance.

But tonight I got irritated. I got irritated because this city plays favorites and that favoritism, while common everywhere, shouldn’t exist from government and shouldn’t impinge on my ability to do my work in an office I want to rent. Further, the city lies about basic provable things because they think nobody will bother to call them out on their nonsense. I saw this when Fitzgerald ran all over Fullerton claiming our budget was balanced. I saw this when the city lied about Red Oak’s bonafides to convince the council to approve a zone change. I saw it and heard it again tonight.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Flory Wins Wheel of Candidates

Accountability? It was never on the agenda.

Well, that was predictable.

In fact, after breaking up the FFFF kitty last night, those betting $1 on Jan Flory only got $0.98 back. Everyone knew it was coming.

Why? Because Fullerton gonna Fullerton and the house always wins. There was never any real chance that anyone was going to do the right thing. Ahmad Zahra of 2018 has clearly been through the establishment sheep dip, emerging as the self-righteous lecturer Ahmad Zahra 2.0 of 2019.

You didn’t know what the NUFF forum was for you to learn about a candidate so you could come speak your piece during last night’s public comment period? Ahmad is offended!

You don’t care about Ahmad’s latest sob story justifying his total lack of conviction to do the right thing by the voter? Ahmad is offended!

You expected Ahmad to abide by his word and not vote for someone lobbying for a position that hadn’t even been announced? Ahmad is offended!

Well, we can see where this is going to go for the next four years. Maybe we’ll start keeping a list of reasons why Ahmad is exempt from being held accountable for his own actions and statements. Excuses seem to be his tool of choice.

As for Jesús Silva, Fullerton’s next liberal lion, he just sold out his wife and the rest of Fullerton’s liberal cabal by granting a third vote to continue enforcement of Chevron’s development agreement for West Coyote Hills. There’s a flip flop that would even make Doug Chaffee envious. Sorry Fullerton, the bulldozer is coming, all thanks to Jesús.

No surprises from Fullerton’s Queen-of-Mean Jennifer Fitzgerald. One has to wonder what all those whispers between her, Ahmad, Jesús, and City Manager Ken Domer were all about.

As the council begins to tackle the problems created by their predecessors, at least they’ll be able to look over to the left and ask Jan Flory directly, “Remind us again, why did you do that?”

We, the collective imbalance that is FFFF, look forward to hearing how Indivisible types attempt to exculpate themselves as they realize their progressive reformers are actually no different from the cronyistic corporatists they despise.

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Will Ahmad Zahra Hold Firm?

AhmadZahra

Back in December, in his first at-bat, Ahmad Zahra surprised me by speaking of the Constitution and transparency whilst simultaneously voting against FitzSilva in their attempt to appoint Jan Flory to Council. Zahra was on fire with gems such as:

“My decision is going to be contingent upon us making sure that the appointment process is fair and open and transparent. So until we can make that decision, I don’t see how we should take votes away from people.

“The question is, is there a fairer and open and more transparent process than voting itself? Can we come up with that? Can we come up with something better than what the Constitution come up with? That is my question for the council. I’m leaving my decision until I hear other council members.”

Tonight we get to find out if Zahra is a man of principle standing by his own talking points at the last meeting or if that was all simply a clever flex to show who has the real authority on this issue in an effort to get his preferred pick onto council.

For those new to the story here’s the gist as I understand it —

Jesus Silva wanted incumbency in 2022 and thus opted to run for the District 3 seat on council.

Council then chose to change the law ON ELECTION DAY in the case Silva beat Sebourn in order to limit the options for voters.

Silva took home the ring on election day and in winning he vacated his at-large seat which runs until 2020.

Then in December the dynamic duo of Jennifer Fitzgerald and Jesus Silva testily complained that they needed Ahmad to go along to get along in order for them to get what they wanted. Zahra didn’t go along which brings us to today.

Tonight we’ll watch as FitzSilva likely tries to lay it on thick and blame Ahmad for the cost of the election should he choose transparency and an election (as he did back in December). This is posturing bollocks but I’m wondering if he’ll stand firm. Both he and our residents need to know that the fault here lies partially with Silva for running, partially with council for changing the city ordinance, ON ELECTION DAY, to facilitate this choice between the devil and the deep blue sea, but really the fault lies with our City Attorney The Other Dick Jones for offering terrible advice and putting us in this situation in the first place. Zahra is blameless here on the issue of cost should he choose openness and transparency by way of a special election.

dick-jones

Prepare for the same shenanigans with FitzSilva promising a fictionally transparent process in this city which is allergic to the very premise of transparency. The same transparency which had Jan Flory meeting with at least 2 (if not 3) current council members and bringing a cabal of people to lobby for her to be appointed without the citizenry any the wiser. THAT type of so-called transparency should be rejected and here’s hoping that Councilman Zahra continues to impress the way he did during at his last at-bat.

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You Gotta Spin It to Win It!

Looks like Fullerton will reconsider its options concerning the existing City Council vacancy tomorrow.  The current agenda goes into detail concerning the city’s options, including when a Special Election might be held, how much it would cost, and what a plan might look like if the Council were to appoint to fill the vacancy by February 2.

We’ve been trying to keep tabs on who’s playing Fullerton’s version of Game of Thrones here. So far, the only person known to openly campaign for the seat is former councilwoman Jan Flory.

So, which option will it be?

A) An unelected bench warmer who likely has no moral authority to do anything other than break tie votes

or

B) Taxpayers spending $400,000 to elect an independently wealthy or political action committee dominated Fullertonian who is only running to secure incumbency in District 1, 2, or 4 for another election in 2020?

Don’t you love choices with no downsides?

Find out who wins (someone) and who loses (you) tomorrow, when we play WHEEL. OF. REPLACEMENT CANDIDATES!

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