Spectrum Health’s Role in the Trump-Russia Server Scandal

Much speculation and rumor has surrounded the mysterious data connections that bounced back and forth between Russia’s Alfa Bank, Trump Tower and the DeVos family’s Spectrum Health in Michigan prior to the 2016 election.  Rather than concentratin’ on whether it was top-secret spyware, database replication or some other whiz-bang data transmittin’ software, let’s step back and look at the role each site played and what value each player might have added to this little Trump-spiracy.

Now that some of the smoke has cleared, we know two basic facts.

  1.  Russian hackers were able to acquire voter rolls from a number of key battleground states.
  2. Russian bot-farms were able to inundate social media with fake news, propaganda and Trump-friendly talkin’ points in the run-up to the election.

The question we must ask is a simple, but important one, because the plausibility of this whole data-sharin’ shindig rests on it…

How did the Russians convert generic voter roll information into a specific list of targeted social media contacts?

In simpler terms…

From This To This

Voter rolls have basic information: name, address, maybe a phone number, but that’s it.  Unless you plan a massive door-knockin’ campaign, it’s pretty useless.  So, to repeat the question, how do you get from generic voter rolls to micro-targeted social media lists?  What’s the one thing that ties all these things together?  An email address!

From This To This

All Russian intelligence needed was to associate an email address with a name and address of a voter and bingo! Every social media account you own is tied to your email address, right?  Once they had an email, they could data-mine everything about you from your social media feeds.  They immediately knew if you were a Trumper, a Hill-bot, a Bernie Bro or a Stein fanatic, and could tailor a bot-campaign custom-made for you!

So where did they get the email addresses?  This is where Spectrum Health comes in.  Located in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Spectrum is smack dab in the middle of one of the states the Trump campaign had to tip to win.  They are a huge health-care provider with subsidiaries that include hospitals treatment facilities, urgent-care clinics, as well as physician practices that serve the western Michigan area.  But the big enchilada for this caper is their access to insurance provider databases from all over the United States.  And what do those insurance database all have?  Email addresses tied to a name and address!

Bam!  This is the key to tied the whole operation together.

EmailSpectrumChart

So what did the DeVos family get in return for Spectrum’s role in this little ping-ping wing-ding?  You’ll have to ask the new Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos!

 

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63 thoughts on “Spectrum Health’s Role in the Trump-Russia Server Scandal”

    1. This is great work, and your surmise sounds like Occam would be proud. One challenge of where we sit on the outside is tolerance of what we do not know. At least one commenter rejects this construction on the basis that he has faith in the authority of Spectrum, that they are good folk. That doesn’t count. Spectrum itself would not need to know about Alfa and Trump, only a certain segment would need to co-operate. What we know is that Alfa communicated thru Trump with Spectrum, AND THERE IS NO EARTHLY REASON WHY THIS WOULD HAPPEN. Tea has a strong theory. It’s up to Mueller et al to nail it.

      Liked by 4 people

    2. Much worse than detailed: Betsy deVos is Mrs Erik Prince Blackwater war criminal mercenary corporations agency under the Bush Crime Family occupation of White House 2001-2009 closely linked with Halliburton no bid contracts infamous for showers electrocuting dozens of troops BURN PITS OF UNCRATED war supplies triple billed as enemy destroyed PERJURY and the AmWAY cult of home soap & supplies @CatVetCommunity USN’71’73 @LarryAccomplish….Larry.H.Carter.Center@gmail.com 843 926 1750

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Betsy Devos, What did your company receive from D Trump in exchange for the names, addresses and email accounts provided to you by the Trump campaign. Is this why he gave you a job you are, in no way, qualified for? Obviously you and your brother/family received something YUGE in exchange. Hopefully, you will be going to prison with him when the ax falls. What right do you have to screw up our educational system? Your $$$? You will live the rest of your life paying for the damage you have done to American children.

    Liked by 8 people

    1. DeVos got the same thing all the other billionaires got when they joined the Trump Cabinet: Exemption from Capital Gains taxation on assets she had to sell to fund her Blind Trust.

      I don’t know off the top of my head what DeVos’ net worth is, but Linda McMahon alone had $5B of WWE stock.

      She saved $750M by joining the Trump Cabinet.

      What are the odds that Trump just /gave/ her three quarters of a billion dollars, without asking for baksheesh?

      Liked by 3 people

      1. “She saved $750M by joining the Trump Cabinet.”

        Can you explain, And possibly, link this bit to me? I don’t doubt you, but I’ve been arm-chair detective-ing this campaign ever since I smelled the fish.

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      1. The Christian stuff is just window dressing to sell the idea to that particular demo so they’ll vote yes on charters & I doubt she even cares. The gov collects taxes and hands the loot over to charters, private prisons, etc. Lots of tax $$$ to be had if you own a network of them. Major scam in plain sight.

        Liked by 4 people

      2. I live in Grand Rapids and the DeVos family practically owns the city. Richard DeVos Sr, Betsy’s father-in-law, is valued at 5.5 billion. And the family is totally motivated by their religious zeal. They can’t wait until all American school children are praying in public schools.

        Liked by 4 people

      3. @qphotonyc You don’t know the DeVos family history. Her father was one of the founders of the Family Research Council, from way back at the beginning of the Religious Right, and he’d been involved well before that in anti gay & anti abortion politics, among other things. She & her brother were raised in a fanatical household. I have no doubt for many on the right it is just a smokescreen but her family sincerely believes in that apocalyptic garbage.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Late reply but I agree with you. I have done a lot of reading on DeVos and her family and they are obsessed with changing the US ed. system to a “Christian” basis. She talks about charter schools but what she really wants is vouchers so that 100’s of evangelical schools can pop up all over the country. Mind you these schools will have NO accountability for their instruction. That was one of the first things the Nazi’s did. They brainwashed the children through school.

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    2. Music to my ears, Shelly. Can’t wait to see this enormous sham brought down. We will be dancing in the streets when they all go to prison.🙏🏻💃🏼🕺🏽

      Liked by 1 person

    3. For one thing she got an appointment in Trump’s Administration and I’m sure good old greenbacks come in somewhere probably related somehow to pulic school system?? Let’s talk to Betsy DuhFuss!!

      Liked by 1 person

    4. Keep the focus on direct links like these NOT PRETENDING BILLARY should not be in jail her secrecy law crimes foundation frauds AND THEFT OF 16 MILLION STATE DEPARTMENT FUNDS THROUGH LAUREATE UNIVERSITY SCAM 25 MILLION of us veterans refused to vote for a criminal Billary aND her Goldman Sachs Heidi Cruz Mezvinski Crime Families banksters

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Chelsea Clinton Mezvinski is a close friend of TrumpOLINI children ELECTION NIGHT TrumpOLINI promised NOT TO JAIL BILLARY FOR her secrecy law crimes Goldman Sachs Heidi Cruz Mezvinski Crime Families banksterism and now Mnuchin of their ilk is SIGNING EVERY 1,2,5,10,20,50 AND 100 dollar bill

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  2. Disclaimer: Not a fan of Trump or Betsy DeVos (and follower of @louisemensch). I live in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The DeVos family doesn’t “own” Spectrum Healthy or Priority Health (they have been very philanthropic w/ the hospital, and I’m sure carry a lot of clout as Dick DeVos is on the board. But to be fair, the DeVos family had been philanthropic to the entire city). It’s a very large “not-for-profit” hospital that has been around much longer than their Amway fortunes. Unless they had some rogue operator, I find it hard to believe.

    I’m not saying it’s not suspicious, or that it doesn’t seem overly convenient, but I’ve seen the “ownership” claim thrown around, and don’t think it helps the credibility of the reporting when it is pretty easy to research and find that it is not the case. Other than that, keep up the good reporting.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. In response to Joe. You may decide the reporting is biased in regards to the Devos family, but research, as you suggest, is easily found of the mini Christian youth armies the Devos family have been trying to build for quite a few years, i.e. “Jesus camps” That is a fact and with video proof of Dick Devos giving a speech about using the same tactics as Stalin, Hitler and Lenin to convert children to their way of thinking. Sometimes philanthropy is not without conditions or an agenda. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/betsy-devos-student-statesmanship-institute_us_58866464e4b070d8cad498d4

      Liked by 4 people

    2. Dick is on the board of Spectrum, the family financed the Helen DeVos children’s hospital and they finance almost every local Christian school in the area. If you live here you know the DeVos and Van Andel names are on everything in the city. They own GR via their philanthropic foundations. Yes, some of it is good for locals but they have a clear agenda. With Trump in office, Betsy can go forward with diverting public money to Christian private schools. This is worth the millions they gave to Trump and other GOP candidates. And I believe collusion would also be worth it in Betsy’s mind. God probably told her it was “OK”.

      Liked by 3 people

    3. I live in West Michigan, close to GR, and agree with you. The person who wrote this article makes a lot of accusations but offers no concrete evidence. Where is the proof that Spectrum did anything wrong?

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  3. The eventual repeal and ‘replace’ of the ACA will no doubt include regulations tailored to serve corporations and financial interests like Spectrum Health and the DeVos family.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Have just read Joe’s note above, and will therefore simply suggest a Trump win facilitated regulatory capture by corporate and financial interests more generally. And then there’s Betsy DeVos’s brother, Erik Prince (who had that secret Trump-Putin back-channel meeting in the Seychelles) – who knows what he gets out of this – something much more sinister?

      Liked by 3 people

      1. I read the other day that Trump is considering privatizing Afghanistan operations and whose name was thrown out? None other than Erik Prince! As in the guy who made hundreds of millions With his company Blackwater- the private contractor in Iraq- who should have been imprisoned and who is also responsible for the Putin-Trump backchannel in the Seychelles, not to mention Betsy DeVos’s brother. Seems pretty obvious the whole DeVos family had quite a few carrot$ dangled in front of their no$e$ to help Trump.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. Demand HR 676 MEDICARE4ALL CONYERS KUCINICH BILL IN CONGRESS 20 YEARS get greed out of healthcare UNIVERSAL SINGLE PAYER saves 60% of one 5th of USA total GNP reducing all coding clerks from dozens to ONE ending million dollar killer insurance CEOs & stock manipulators. ..the same people who stopped E.R.A. fearing equal pay to women as those front line coding clerks

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Just to add a little more context, it seems a little too convenient to me as well. But I just wanted to point out that the best way to not get labeled “fake news” is to have all of your reporting fact-checked. Being local to Spectrum Health, it’s a really good medical system and I’d dare say the DeVos family has spent more money (charitable giving) than they ever could have “made” as a member of the board.

    Not saying something nefarious ISN’T going on, but the DeVos family does not own Spectrum. Dick DeVos is not President of Spectrum Health. Don’t want to give people any reason to say the whole story is wrong just because a few of the easy details were not correct.

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    1. What about a possible connection via Amway? which is owned by Devos’s husband and I believe many Amway exec.s are on Spectrum’s Board. Amway has a huge email base I suspect.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My suspicion is that the Devos family has a list of emails both from their political campaigns but also Amway. Lots of Amway people are Christian evangelicals and they do network marketing already. These are Trump people. Russians probably know that. Amway does business with Russia and Alfa bank already. http://alfabank.com/media/news/2014/04/15/

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I would love to know whom the Spectrum server was hitting for the ‘insured’ data. Property and Casualty insurance companies love TransUnion for credit info, policy info and claim info. (Used to work for one and wrote many a web service just for these) I would assume Medical Insurance has similar relationships and data. It wouldn’t have been the credit side because too many credit inquires will lower a credit score and surely someone would have complained. Things that make you go hmmmmmmmmmm. Thx.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I have been thinking this same thing for some time now, but could only understand it being used on Michigan voters. Can you explain in more detail how Spectrum Health could use their position as a healthcare provider in Michigan to gain email and other information from other states’ residents? If the connections between health providers and insurance companies in one state truly can be used to find out information about and health care recipients anywhere in the country, then we have a highly viable theory. Can you really use a system in Michigan to get information about people who are not residents, nor are they being treated, in Michigan?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. If they used a ‘data clearing house’ like TransUnion, they would have access to National data, not just Michigan. My thoughts based on personal experience.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s very interesting indeed. Combine it with Amway data and you have a nice bunch of data points…..maybe hey sent the data to Alfa, then it came back with some sort of designator for which specific media buy to inundate them. I think Facebook knows more than they have publically addressed on this topic.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Are medical and/or insurance records standardized by ACA? Medicare, Medicaid? Is there a federal database of any kind? Prescriptions? Would it be useful to have medical records for tailoring propaganda as well? 10s of millions of HIPAA violations? Spectrum Health IT personnel should be questioned.
    Alfa owners looking to invest billions in healthcare:
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-07-14/russian-billionaires-plan-u-s-health-push-with-d-c-insiders
    Kushner’s bros Oscar?
    Maybe Trump pushing to eliminate ACA is part of the Deal?
    Thanks TEA for the great work.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. So, Spectrum Health, the DeVos/Prince (Betsy DeVos & Erik Prince, founder of Blackwater, are siblings) company, supplied only email addresses? Sorry, Tea Pain, I have my doubts. I’d like to refer you to a fella named Tea Pain (!!!), written 2017 Apr 3rd:

    https://teapainusa.wordpress.com/2017/04/03/data-patterns-suggest-trump-towerspectrum-health-ran-a-stealth-data-machine-with-russia/

    Roughly 80% of contacts on the tRUmp server came from Alfa Bank & roughly 19% from Spectrum. Contacts were random, in a pattern that would occur if humans initiated them. Longer times between contacts meant a “call” of longer duration, implying more modification in the meantime of the database(s) being transmitted.

    However, as @Conspirator0 noted (& you repeated), contacts by Alfa lasted a LOT longer if Spectrum had signed on in the meantime. You also pointed out that we don’t know what was in those data packets.

    That’s true, but contacts by Alfa when Spectrum had signed on in the meantime lasted roughly 1-2 orders of magnitude (10-100 times, or even more) longer, which is a large factor. Do email addresses take that long to transmit?

    What if they were transmitting other information, e.g. some sort of medical info? Medications? Something financial? Hospitalizations/surgeries? That could certainly be useful for microtargeting, right? It might violate HIPAA privacy policies, but given everything else they’re doing, would they care? Maybe they had some type of fine-print release.

    So I’d propose they were transmitting more than just email addresses from Spectrum, perhaps a lot more. Personally, I find this extremely disturbing, & I don’t think we should ignore it.

    BTW, I really like your blog & hope you find time to post more often.
    🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. OK, I see that as I was writing, proof-reading & editing my comment, others had similar thoughts. Some have also pointed out that the DeVos family has a more peripheral involvement in Spectrum than actual ownership. That doesn’t mean their presence wouldn’t have helped a computer nerd (it might only take one) gain entrance to their system to plant the communication software.

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  9. FYI, phone numbers and email addresses can be used to find Social Media accounts. Without getting into what I do, just know that both are very very helpful in locating SM accounts.

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  10. You’ve done it again Tea Pain. How you figure this all out is amazing and I’m so glad you do. We are so lucky to have you working for us and keeping us informed. The DeVos family is as dirty as they come. Why is everyone so ready to get in bed with Russia to help Trump. I just don’t understand. He’s such a idiot.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I suspect that we won’t know until Mueller’s work becomes public. As I understand it, the server in Trump Tower was removed by the FBI while Trump was in the Middle East.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. This is interesting. Two thoughts. There are many other ways state actor hackers could translate voter roll names to emails. Access to huge spam email lists, most of which include names, for one. Who knows what Russia has up its sleeve.
    The other is that if spectrum did do this, there are traces. HIPPA mandates controls on personal health information and that includes audit trails. Healthcare companies are regularly audited for compliance, its the law.. Too bad an internal spectrum whistleblower can’t report a massive hippa breach. .
    Keep up the great work!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Tea Pain, You were describing this connection MONTHS ago- I remember being intrigued and sharing it from your Twitter feed onto Facebook. Back then, not a single one of my FB friends commented- they didn’t know what to make of it. But we’re ready to put the pieces together now…oh, yes. Big h/t to you!

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  13. Here in Florida I had to opt out of having my email associated with my voter registration. It’s been demonstrated most people won’t opt out nearly as often as they make a deliberate opt in. While I was assured my email wouldn’t be shared publicly, we’re not talking about the public but giving permission for an organization to access my voting information which includes an email address. Most people use the same email address as a catch all, including for social media profiles. No hacking required.

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  14. Do you think the DeVos family remembers the core teachings of Jesus, the poor carpenter who spoke of unconditional love, lack of materialism and treating others as you wish to be treated yourself?

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  15. Fascinating and well done. What are some examples of targeted campaigns the Russkies blanketed social media with, using the Trump-Alfa-Spectrum databases? Are you saying they used social media to convince Dem voters to not vote? Or convinced them to change to Trump? Or, what? And what was illegal, beyond perhaps Spectrum HIPAA violations re patient records?

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  16. Oh and the RNC or DNC data, and state reg roll data, already has emails and cell numbers on millions of voters and can be purchased legally making the insurer connection here less critical as well.

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  17. Wow you guys are retarded. Is it that hard to believe that we just support Trump and his agenda? You thinknthis blogging POS can figure out something before trained professionals dying to take trump down? LOL you guys are losers. THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE TEAPAIN but…. i cant stand this lying bullshit

    Like

    1. Yes color blind… I do believe that you support Trump and his agenda..period. I also believe that if he wrapped a carrot in a banana peel, you’d get the ice cream and chocolate sauce out and swear it’s a banana split because he said so….

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  18. Hi Big T,

    I think you are brilliant so will you marry me?? I live in Okiehoma so we’re probably 2nd cousins and that makes it ok!

    Check the box(es) that apply:
    __Yes! (I’ve loved you from afar!)
    __Naw… (You’re cute but I heard you can’t get rid of that rash)
    __Already hitched to another (ie. cousin/stepmother/barn animal)

    Lovingly,
    Little T

    Like

  19. The thoughts to contribute:

    1) Maybe the reason this Spectrum endocrinology facility was used, was because there was an office there for Maria Putin’s charity? She has an endocrinology charity with branch offices in Cyprus and London. Seems like it might be a front organization for Alfa Group.

    2) Maybe the reason there was an Alfa Groups server in Grand Rapids, wasn’t to add info, but so that Erik Prince and Betsy Devos could access the database to help other campaigns? They groomed Eric Greitens to win the Missouri governorship using dark money PACs. Now Greitens is close to Pence, and seems to be getting groomed for VP. Did Alfa Group data or Russian money end up assisting the Greitens campaign?

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  20. Don’t forget to mention that Betsy DeVos’ brother is Eric Prince and he is trying privatise the military for his monetary gain.

    Like

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