Sodium hydroxide was pushed to acidic levels in Pinellas County’s water by a remote hacker; and its sheriff is warning US officials across our nation to be on the alert

Jackson, Horrigan, Franklin and Tito Jackson in Youngstown, and every other Ohio mayor managing water and sewer systems, must place employees on high alert as Pinellas' sheriff isn't sure if the hacker they're hunting is foreign or domestic

CLEVELAND, OH – Since the terror attack on the twin towers of the World Trade Center of September 11, 2001, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the United States Army Corps of Engineers has been alerting the nation’s non-reading politicians and bureaucrats in numerous reports to take steps to protect the security of water treatment plants under their management.  The sad reality for American voters is the poorly-prepared candidates they’re electing to oversee vital utilities that affect all life are more interested in the bribes and campaign donations they’re receiving from water systems vendors than learning to keep our water from being poisoned.

Sheriff Bob Gaultieri of Pinellas County, Florida and the FBI are investigating a terror attack on the water supply of the Municipal Corporation of Oldsmar.  A person with a computer and knowledge of the management software the city is using to manage its water and sewer system, and its back door security flaws, remotely-accessed controls.  The terror attack on the city’s water treatment operations occurred on February 5, 2021 at 8 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

Sheriff Gaultieri at a February 8, 2021 news conference explained how the terrorist attack raised the level of sodium hydroxide in the city’s drinking, cooking and bathing water to highly-acidic levels for three and a half minutes.  Gaultieri shared the shocking words of an Oldsmar employee who acknowledged that off-site managers routinely adjust chemical levels from their homes or offices.

Sodium hydroxide or “caustic soda” is used with sodium hypochlorite to create chlorine as a disinfectant in the water we use to drink, cook and bathe our bodies.  It’s found in lye and hair straightening products.  It’s also found in battery acid.  As a water treatment chemical, it’s used to reduce alkaline.

The water management employees Gaultieri referenced handle “remote” tasks using proprietary water management software corporations are selling to local governments inside the United States of America and abroad.  The majority of the major global competitors in the water management and metering industry are not headquartered in the United States of America.  Several water management corporations operate out of China with sales agents inside the United States of America.

The vast majority of elected and appointed public officials charged with the duty to protect the nation’s water infrastructure don’t read the reports that include “how to” instructions.

Corrupt domestic water management corporations like OMI/CH2M Hill are meeting mayors and local legislators at conferences promoted by the U.S. Conference of Mayors and the National League of Cities.  A former East Cleveland mayor met his OMI/CH2M Hill “bribers” at a National League of Cities conference n 2002.  I asked former Auditor of State Jim Petro and the FBI to investigate the $3.2 million no bid contract East Cleveland’s former mayor convinced council to award OMI/CH2M Hill to manage the water department.  It cost $1.4 million annually to manage the city’s water department with municipal workers.  The unlawful no-bid agreement included a $300,000 annual bonus that was distributed as a bribe to the team of political thieves.

What should trouble the FBI is that domestic corporations like IBM are selling the same water management software to cities, counties and states inside the United States of America are selling the same products to foreign governments; and they’re doing it in secret as unregistered foreign agents in violation of the Foreign Agents Registration Act.  Sheriff Gaultieri offered the idea that the terror attacker’s “cloud based” remote “hack” may not have come from inside the United States of America.

On October 10, 2001, former FBI Deputy Assistant Director of Counter-terrorism and national infrastructure protection, dismissed the idea that the nation’s water infrastructure was an easy terrorist target.  Dick told the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure that a terrorist attack on the nation’s water supply though logical was difficult.

The USEPA offers a “security risk” checklist for water treatment managers.

“In order to be successful, a terrorist would have to have large amounts of agent, and some knowledge of the water supply network and access to critical locations within the network. It is important to stress however, that the FBI has no general or specific threat information of a planned attack on the nation’s water supply,” Dick told Congress.  “The contamination of a water supply with a biological agent that causes illness or death of victims is possible, but not probable.”

Dick did say to Congress that the possibility of “cyber-manipulation” existed, but not on technology created in 2001 which came 10 years after the internet went live on August 6, 1991.   There was no “cloud” in 2001 the same year Bob Urosevich of Election Systems and Solutions was selling the first electronic voting equipment in Ohio.  Water systems were in the beginning phases of using online management software.

“With regard to cyber-manipulation, there are growing numbers of water supply systems that use Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems, the digital controls for pumps and treatment facilities. There are vulnerabilities in this system that could lead to water supply problems,” Special Agent Dick told Congress. “In addition, more water system operators are being given access to the Internet via the SCADA systems local area network (LAN). As a result, water systems are more likely to encounter denial of service attacks, viruses, and other malicious programs, which could severely disrupt the operation of these systems.”

I’m sharing a page from the CUPPS software the USEPA offers as a management and productivity tool for water systems managers.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency has a series of daily, weekly, monthly and annual duties Congress has  assigned to water system managers and employees throughout the nation.  All require visual inspections conducted by in-person walk-throughs that make it insane for politicians to let workers handling this “vital to life” utility discharge these duties remotely.  The duties are identified in the USEPA’s Check Up Program for Small Systems or CUPPS User Guide I doubt most of the nation’s 19,429 mayors across the nation know exist.

The list of daily CUPPS tasks requires levels checks of all the chemicals used in water treatment.  Chlorine every 30 minutes.  All plant operators must be able to “manually” operate equipment which makes cloud-based supervision an ineffective threat to public safety.

Some of the deadly chemicals being used to treat water “within acceptable limits” are Aluminum Sulfate, Sodium Aluminate, Polymer, Sodium Hydroxide, Ferric Chloride, Polyaluminum Chloride, Ferrous Chloride, Hydrochloric Acid, Sulfur Dioxide, Magnesium Oxide, Calcium Oxide and Carbon Dioxide.  An increase in sodium hydroxide in chlorinated water would cause a human to smell sulfer associated with the sulferic acid that chemical added in large amounts to the water faster than a remote supervisor could detect and adjust it from the “cloud” at home.

Pinellas County Sheriff Gaultieri says the investigation is ongoing with the FBI’s help.  Americans voting in 2021 had better make sure the candidates they’re selecting to lead counties, cities, villages and townships actually no more than being a Democrat, a Republican, pro-union, pro-abortion and pro-immigrant and homosexual rights.

That shit ain’t got nothing to do with the reality of any public job.

Here’s a link to the USEPA’s “Water Security Handbook” for the loyal American citizen who wants to know more than their elected officials.

Below is a list of the top players in the water software management game.  I’ve already mentioned IBM.  Flood your city council, commission and county council meetings.  Investigate every vendor’s clients for those doing business in foreign nations as unregistered agents because you know your mayors, council members, county and state officials are not.

Don’t rely on the mainstream news reporters to be thorough.  They’re all “click bait” artists who simply repeat the same uninvestigated bad facts.  You’ve got to do your own homework and become more, individually, civic-minded and involved.

  • Aclara Technologies LLC
  • Aquiba Pty Ltd.
  • Arad Group
  • Arqiva Limited
  • B METERS s.r.l.
  • Badger Meter, Inc.
  • CyanConnode Holdings Plc
  • Diehl Metering GmbH
  • Elster Group SE
  • Iskraemeco, d.d.
  • Itron, Inc.
  • Kamstrup A/S
  • Mueller Water Products, Inc.
  • Neptune Technology Group Inc.
  • Ningbo Water Meter Co., Ltd.
  • Silver Spring Networks, Inc.
  • Tantalus Systems Corp.
  • Xylem Inc.
  • Zhejiang Holley Liyuan Metering Co., Ltd.

Eric Jonathan Brewer

Cleveland's most influential journalist and East Cleveland's most successful mayor is an East Saint Louis, Illinois native whose father led the city's petition drive in 1969 to elect the first black mayor in 1971. Eric is an old-school investigative reporter whose 40-year body of editorial work has been demonstrably effective. No local journalist is feared or respected more.

Trained in newspaper publishing by the legendary Call & Post Publisher William Otis Walker in 1978 when it was the nation's 5th largest Black-owned publication, Eric has published and edited 13 local, regional and statewide publications across Ohio. Adding to his publishing and reporting resume is Eric's career in government. Eric served as the city's highest paid part-time Special Assistant to ex-Cleveland Mayor Michael R. White. He served as Chief of Staff to ex-East Cleveland Mayor Emmanuel Onunwor; and Chief of Communications to the late George James in his capacity as the Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority's first Black executive director. Eric was appointed to serve as a member of the state's Financial Planning & Supervision Commission to guide the East Cleveland school district out of fiscal emergency and $20 million deficit. Former U.S. HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson told Eric in his D.C. office he was the only mayor in the nation simultaneously-managing a municipal block grant program. Eric wrote the city's $2.2 million Neighborhood Stabilization Program grant application. A HUD Inspector General audit of his management of the block grant program resulted in "zero" audit findings.

As a newspaper publisher, Eric has used his insider's detailed knowledge of government and his publications to lead the FBI and state prosecutors to investigations that resulted in criminal prosecutions of well-known elected officials in Ohio; and have helped realign Cleveland's political landscape with the defeat of candidates and issues he's exposed. Eric's stories led to the indictments of the late Governor George Voinovich's brother, Paul Voinovich of the V Group, and four associates. He asked the FBI to investigate the mayor he'd served as chief of staff for public corruption; and testified in three federal trials for the prosecution. He forced former Cuyahoga County Coroner Dr. Elizabeth Balraj to admit her investigations of police killings were fraudulent; and to issue notices to local police that her investigators would control police killing investigations. Eric's current work has resulted in Cuyahoga County Judge John Russo accepting the criminal complaint he guided an activist to file against 24 civil rights-violating police officers in the city he once led for operating without valid peace officer credentials. USA Today reporters picked up on Eric's police credentials reporting from his social media page and made it national.

Eric is the author of of his first book, "Fight Police License Plate Spying," which examines the FBI and local police misuse of the National Crime Information Center criminal records history database. An accomplished trumpet player and singer whose friendship with Duke Fakir of the Four Tops resulted in his singing the show's closing song, "Can't Help Myself": Curtis Sliwa of New York's Guardian Angels counts Eric among his founding chapter leaders from the early 1980's role as an Ohio organizer of over 300 volunteer crime fighters in Cleveland, Columbus and Youngstown, Ohio. For his work as a young man Eric was recognized by Cleveland's Urban League as it's 1983 Young Man of the Year.

Known in Cleveland for his encyclopedic knowledge of government and history, and intimately-connected with the region's players, every local major media outlet in Cleveland has picked up on one of Eric's stories since 1979. There is no mainstream newspaper, television or radio outlet in Cleveland that does not include an interview with Eric Jonathan Brewer in its archives over the past 40 years.

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