SURVEILLANCE

Dutch govt says no to backdoors, slides $540k into OpenSSL without breaking eye contact

The Dutch government has formally opposed the introduction of backdoors in encryption products.

A government position paper, published by the Ministry of Security and Justice on Monday and signed by the security and business ministers, concludes that "the government believes that it is currently not appropriate to adopt restrictive legal measures against the development, availability and use of encryption within the Netherlands."

The conclusion comes at the end of a five-page run-through of the arguments for greater encryption and the counter-arguments for allowing the authorities access to the information.
READ MORE: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/01/04/dutch_government_says_no_to_back...

FVEY vs Kim Dotcom

For all intents and purposes, whether it’s because they’ve gone rogue or are off the leash or whether it is just unofficial deep state policy; New Zealand intelligence agencies have been acting “arguably at the behest of a foreign power” according to Bryce Edwards. Including against their own countrymen.

That used to be called treason. Now it is called international co-operation and is self-justified by a secret treaty that was hidden from the public for 60 years: known only as the UK/USA Agreement. According to this link detailing the complex history of the agreement, which instituted and eventually encompassed the Five Eyes, the full text only became available in 2010 – some 64 years after its genesis.
READ MORE: https://contraspin.co.nz/fvey-vs-kim-dotcom/

A Redaction Re-Visited: NSA Targeted “The Two Leading” Encryption Chips

On September 5, 2013, The Guardian, The New York Times and ProPublica jointly reported – based on documents provided by whistleblower Edward Snowden – that the National Security Agency (NSA) had compromised some of the encryption that is most commonly used to secure internet transactions. The NYT explained that NSA “has circumvented or cracked much of the encryption, or digital scrambling, that guards global commerce and banking systems, protects sensitive data like trade secrets and medical records, and automatically secures the e-mails, Web searches, Internet chats and phone calls of Americans and others around the world.”
READ MORE: https://theintercept.com/2016/01/04/a-redaction-re-visited-nsa-targeted-...

Human resources: Walmart hired Lockheed Martin to keep tabs on employees

Walmart hired global security giant Lockheed Martin a few years ago to monitor activism in its massive workforce, according to new documents. The defense contractor tracked employees’ social media and reported protest participation to the retail giant.

While Walmart publicly dismissed the demonstrations as “just another union publicity stunt,” their subsequent actions indicate that they took it seriously. In addition to hiring Lockheed Martin to keep tabs on employees’ social media feeds, the companies ranked stores by labor activity and monitored employees who were known to be involved in labor activism, according to Bloomberg.
READ MORE: https://www.rt.com/usa/323485-walmart-hired-lockheed-martin/?utm_source=...

Huge Security Flaw Can Expose VPN Users’ Real IP-Adresses

A newly discovered vulnerability can expose the real IP-addresses of VPN users with relative ease. The issue, which affects all VPN protocols and operating systems, was uncovered by Perfect Privacy who alerted several affected competitors to the threat before making it public.

ip-addressFor the past several years interest in encrypted and anonymous communications has spread to a much wider audience.
READ MORE: https://torrentfreak.com/huge-security-flaw-can-expose-vpn-users-real-ip...

Activists use tech to fuel their movements, and cops turn to Geofeedia to aggregate the data

A burst of fire from an automatic rifle rings out on a deserted city street, and, instantaneously, a gunshot detector working in conjunction with a smart surveillance camera identifies the location of the shooting. The system automatically alerts a social media monitoring website, which establishes a digital, geo-location perimeter on a map of the neighborhood.

Now, any posts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other location-tagged social media uploaded in that area will appear on a display at police headquarters. An uploaded Vine from one block away could show someone running away, and give the cops a starting point for their investigation.
READ MORE: https://www.inverse.com/article/8358-your-social-media-posts-are-fueling...

Judge: Stingrays are “simply too powerful” without adequate oversight

A federal judge in Illinois has recently taken the unusual step of issuing three new stringent requirements for the government when it wants to deploy cell-site simulators. The move aims to protect the Fourth Amendment rights of innocent bystanders against unreasonable search and seizure.

Of course, for now, this order only applies to this one judge in the Northern District of Illinois.

These new stingray requirements come just about a month after the Department of Homeland Security imposed its own warrant requirement, following a similar move by the Department of Justice.
READ MORE: http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2015/11/judge-stingrays-are-simply-to...

After Endless Demonization Of Encryption, Police Find Paris Attackers Coordinated Via Unencrypted SMS

In the wake of the tragic events in Paris last week encryption has continued to be a useful bogeyman for those with a voracious appetite for surveillance expansion. Like clockwork, numerous reports were quickly circulated suggesting that the terrorists used incredibly sophisticated encryption techniques, despite no evidence by investigators that this was the case. These reports varied in the amount of hallucination involved, the New York Times even having to pull one such report offline. Other claims the attackers had used encrypted Playstation 4 communications also wound up being bunk.
READ MORE: https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20151118/08474732854/after-endless-dem...

Intelligence agencies pounce on Paris attacks to pursue spy agenda

Government officials are wasting no time in attempting to exploit the tragedy in Paris to pass invasive anti-privacy laws and acquire extraordinary new powers that they have wanted for years. In the process, they are making incredibly dishonest arguments and are receiving virtually no pushback from the media.

Absent any actual information or evidence so far about intelligence failures leading up to the deplorable terrorist attack in Paris, pundits spent the weekend speculating that Edward Snowden and surveillance reform were to blame for the fact that the attack went undetected. Then on Monday, in an epic episode of blame shifting, the CIA director, John Brennan, reportedly said privacy advocates have undermined the ability of spies to monitor terrorists.
READ MORE: http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/nov/17/intelligence-agenci...

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