One of this blog’s most faithful correspondents is John “the Schnozz” Paterson. He writes to us on average four or five times per week, usually threatening death, dismemberment, or arrest for unspecified crimes. To be honest, we generally don’t read his emails—unkind, we know, but life is short and his emails are long. Most of them end up in the spam folder, but yesterday one made its way through to the inbox.
We scanned it idly.
Aside from the usual bumph (he’s been targetting some unfortunate person…someone is imitating President Trump…someone named DC Grimwood has stolen all his computer equipment, wah, wah wah…) the email’s addressee struck us as familiar.
Scott Pattinson, we’d heard that name before.
We recalled that Scott Pattinson was an enthusiastic campaigner on the Hollie Greig hoax, who’d latched onto the Hampstead SRA hoax from its inception in 2015, making a bit of a name for himself as a rather nasty troll. As far as we knew, he’d since faded into obscurity.
Scrolling through Paterson’s latest missive, we found that for some reason, he’d seen fit to send us an email from Scott Pattinson to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (the agency formerly known as the IPCC).
Curiously, Scott claims that he is being threatened by CEOP Command!
For the benefit of our non-British readers, CEOP Command is a branch of the National Crime Agency (NCA) here. According to its web page,
CEOP works with child protection partners across the UK and overseas to identify the main threats to children and coordinates activity against these threats to bring offenders to account. We protect children from harm online and offline, directly through NCA led operations and in partnership with local and international agencies.
Why would a Command which deals with online child abuse and exploitation be “threatening” Scott, telling him, “Continue with these investigations and I will come to your house, handcuff you, and take you to the station”? Coming from a police officer, this sounds to us like no idle threat.
Well, it turns out that young Scott has been “gathering evidence” that someone who runs this blog is “running an online child abuse server that shares images of children being abused”.
It seems to us we’ve heard that song before
Last time we were accused of that sort of thing, it was on Charlotte Alton Ward’s blog in June or July 2015. Charlotte claimed to have been contacted by a “computer expert” who used
a piece of crap some software called “IP Detective Pro” to prove that RD (who she believed runs this blog) was somehow involved in sharing child sex abuse images.
A few weeks after that ludicrous allegation, Scott’s friend Malcolm Konrad Ogilvy published a plaintive email from Scott to (guess who?) CEOP, bleating about how they weren’t listening to him, and why not, and he bought special software to prove that he was right and everything!
Last year, Scott went so far as to put a video up to prove his point:
Sadly, the only point it proved was that Scott spends a lot of time looking at child sexual abuse sites.
Why Scott’s theory doesn’t work
We asked our tech person to explain in non-tech language, and here’s what they said:
1. Would a DNS give someone who knew what they were doing access to illegal sites?
Yes, in a way it would, if by “a DNS” they mean “adding entries to the host’s file”. The porn site was never inaccessible to begin with, but doing it that way is one (very clumsy) way to trick your browser into making the request you need.
2. Could a DNS be used to search Deep Net?
To access certain sites, yes. To search, no. Not unless one of the sites you access is an index of said net. (DNS has no search capabilities at all.)
3. Is this how paedophiles and other criminals operate online?
Maybe. It’s a plausible, if very low-tech, way to sort-of hide a website. They would have to be pretty inept criminals, without much technical expertise.
4. Can you really use predictive analysis software to find out what someone else’s “sites of interest” might be?
Nope. Never, not at all. It will only show you what it thinks your own interests might be, based on where your browser has been recently.
In other words, because Scott is fascinated by child sex abuse images and has gone looking for similar sites in the past, his much-vaunted IP Detective Pro software takes him to that kind of site. Actually, given his obsession with locating such sites, it would be surprising if the software directed him anywhere else.
How long has this been going on?
Rummaging back through our nearly three years’ worth of posts, we find that Scott has been warned off by CEOP many times, starting on 30 August 2015. That’s when we find Charlotte frothing at the mouth because “one of her researchers” has been told to stop violating the law by continuing to search for online child sex abuse images.
So it’s hardly surprising that CEOP Command are growing tired of his antics, and have begun threatening to arrest him if he doesn’t knock it off.
Under the circumstances, it seems extremely unlikely that the IOPC will give him a different answer. But then, he’s not known as “Muley Mulester” for nothing.