After years of spotty or no connection, my internet connection has been continuous for about a year or so, which makes it possible to stream movies and series after work. Although I try to be modest, every now and then I cannot resist to binge a bit on crime series, and I am always surprised that I often feel sympathy for the bad guy(s). Maybe that is just a testimony to the skills of the makers, or, is it that the line between good and bad is a fine one, or even non-discrete?

Last week’s news presented a real-life case. A ransomware attack crippled a vital fuel pipeline in the US, named the Colonial pipeline. It caused gas prices to go up and a wave of anxious drivers and hoarding behavior. It was a wake-up call how vulnerable our systems actually are. The attack was attributed to a group called Dark Side, operating from eastern Europe, the obvious villain in the story.

With a bit of shame I must admit that I am not sure who is the villain here, and even though Dark Side operates under questionable motives (making money is their game), I did feel a bit of sympathy for the attackers. 

It must be because I have been reading up on the gas exploitation in the northern Netherlands, the profitable fossil fuel market as a whole, that is not going to let us go anytime soon and is causing us, and the world around us so much trouble and devastatingly so in the (near) future. Does this industry, the policy makers who keep supporting them, deserve my sympathy? I don’t think so. 

So what about Dark Side. It seems they are professionals and even have some principles; they attack businesses who possess the financial means to pay the ransom, their goal is to make money, not to create societal problems, and it is forbidden to attack service organization such as healthcare, education, public sector and non-profits. It is secretly not what we would like, for companies that have exploited our lands, our people for so long to finally pay up. 

Not yet, not yet, but I wonder when comes the time, when I, and many of us, change our minds, when the end justifies the means for radical change.