SURVEILLANCE

Iraqi Insurgents Stymied the NSA and Other Highlights from 263 Internal Agency Reports

Early in the fight against al Qaeda in Afghanistan and insurgents in Iraq, the National Security Agency was blindsided by enemy fighters’ frequent use of rudimentary wireless communications devices known as “high–powered cordless phones,” according to documents among 263 published today by The Intercept.

The documents, drawn from the agency’s internal news site, SIDtoday, and provided by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, date mostly to the latter half of 2003, and show the NSA was at the time rapidly expanding its internet monitoring. But even as its digital surveillance grew more sophisticated, the agency saw its targets increasingly adopting crude forms of communications like shortwave radio, SMS cellphone messaging and, most vexingly, high-powered cordless phones.
READ MORE: https://theintercept.com/2016/08/10/iraqi-insurgents-stymied-the-nsa-and...

Microsoft Pitches Technology That Can Read Facial Expressions at Political Rallies

“Realtime Crowd Insights” is an Application Programming Interface (API), or a software tool that connects web applications to Microsoft’s cloud computing services. Through Microsoft’s emotional analysis API — a component of Realtime Crowd Insights — applications send an image to Microsoft’s servers. Microsoft’s servers then analyze the faces and return emotional profiles for each one.

In a November blog post, Microsoft said that the emotional analysis could detect “anger, contempt, fear, disgust, happiness, neutral, sadness or surprise.”
READ MORE: https://theintercept.com/2016/08/04/microsoft-pitches-technology-that-ca...

New attack bypasses HTTPS protection on Macs, Windows, and Linux

The attack can be carried out by operators of just about any type of network, including public Wi-Fi networks, which arguably are the places where Web surfers need HTTPS the most. It works by abusing a feature known as WPAD—short for Web Proxy Autodisovery—in a way that exposes certain browser requests to attacker-controlled code. The attacker then gets to see the entire URL of every site the target visits. The exploit works against virtually all browsers and operating systems. It will be demonstrated for the first time at next week's Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas in a talk titled Crippling HTTPS with Unholy PAC.
READ MORE: http://arstechnica.com/security/2016/07/new-attack-that-cripples-https-c...

France issues formal notice to Microsoft about Windows 10: “stop collecting excessive data and tracking browsing by users without their consent.”

The French National Data Protection Commission (CNIL) has issued a formal notice to Microsoft regarding Windows 10 privacy and security concerns. The agency, along with the other European countries in the Article 29 working group on data privacy, have been investigating Microsoft since the release of Windows 10 last year. The CNIL has been responsible for data privacy law in France since 1978. Yesterday, CNIL Chairwoman Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin publicly served Microsoft Corporation formal notice telling them to “stop collecting excessive data and tracking browsing by users without their consent.”
READ MORE: https://www.privateinternetaccess.com/blog/2016/07/france-issues-formal-...

Retired FSB general suspects Pokemon Go of spying for foreign special services

A retired major general of Russia’s domestic security service, the FSB, has told reporters that the extremely popular augmented reality game Pokemon Go and similar mobile applications could be used by special services to collect intelligence data.

“Just imagine that these ‘creatures’ appear not in some city park, but at secret installations where a conscript soldier or any other military serviceman photographs it with his camera, strictly of their own free will, without any pressure or coercion. This is an ideal scheme with which special services can collect information. And no one would even pay attention, because it’s such a trendy hobby,” retired Major General Aleksandr Mikhailov said in comments with RIA Novosti.
READ MORE: https://www.rt.com/politics/351286-retired-fsb-general-suspects-pokemon/...

Agent's Testimony Shows FBI Not All That Interested In Ensuring The Integrity Of Its Forensic Evidence

Security researcher Jonathan Zdziarski has been picking apart the FBI's oral testimony on the NIT it deployed in the Matish/Playpen case. The judge presiding over that case denied Matish's suppression request for a number of reasons -- including the fact that Matish's residence in Virginia meant that Rule 41 jurisdiction rules weren't violated by the FBI's NIT warrant. Judge Morgan Jr. then went off script and suggested the FBI didn't even need to obtain a warrant to deploy a hacking tool that exposed end user computer info because computers get hacked all the time.
READ MORE: https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20160712/11394834949/agents-testimony-...

Pokémon Go is another mass-survellience tool?

Pokémon Go, a smartphone game developed by Niantic, is sweeping the world at the moment. Among the hype surrounding this, there has been a somewhat vocal minority claiming that the game is nothing more than a data mining tool that is being used as a means of government surveillance.

So let’s look at the facts and start with the low-level stuff that now seems to be almost run of the mill in terms of privacy concerns when it comes to smartphone apps.
READ MORE: http://www.planetgeek.co.uk/2016/07/11/pokemon-go-collects.html

U.K. Court, in David Miranda Case, Rules Terrorism Act Violates Fundamental Rights of Free Press

A BRITISH APPEALS COURT has ruled that the United Kingdom’s broad counterterrorism laws breach fundamental rights in a case involving the seizure of encrypted documents from David Miranda, the partner of Intercept co-founder Glenn Greenwald, at a London airport in 2013.

Miranda was detained and interrogated for nine hours at Heathrow Airport in August 2013 while he was assisting Greenwald’s reporting on documents about government mass surveillance leaked by National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden.
READ MORE: https://theintercept.com/2016/01/19/miranda-appeal-uk-terrorism-fundamen...

Encrypt Your Phone Calling and txt/sms Messaging From Your Smart Phone Over WIFI

Governments all over the world now are run and controlled by dangerous criminals with enormous powers to place ordinary citizens under surveillance. If you are a political activist or journalist that challenges the government or exposes corruption you are especially at risk of being placed under surveillance and having your home broken into by government employed thugs like the Police.

If you own an Android Smart Phone or iPhone however there is an app you can use to encrypt your communications from your phone to make it much more difficult for the criminals in the intelligence agencies and police force to steal your communications and metadata. Messaging and calling can be encrypted and sent over the internet using your phones WIFI connection and bypassing your provider making communication free through your phone at the same time.

The app is called Signal and it is made by Open Whisper Systems: https://whispersystems.org/#page-top

61 agencies after warrantless access to Australian telecommunications metadata

The names of 57 agencies that are seeking to gain access to telecommunications metadata stored on Australian residents without a warrant have been released under a Freedom of Information (FOI) request.

The names of four agencies have been redacted, with the Attorney-General's Department (AGD) previously saying that disclosing the names of these agencies would be contrary to the public interest.
READ MORE: http://www.zdnet.com/article/61-agencies-after-warrantless-access-to-aus...

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