23/04/2013 & 24/04/2013 | http://dirtywars.org/ | Jeremy Scahill, author of the new book, „Dirty Wars: The World Is a Battlefield,“ charts the expanding covert wars operated by the CIA and JSOC, the Joint Special Operations Command. The book is based on years of reporting on U.S. secret operations in Yemen, Somalia, Pakistan and Afghanistan. The Obama administration’s assassination of two U.S. citizens in 2011, Anwar al-Awlaki and his 16-year-old Denver-born son Abdulrahman, is a central part of Scahill’s book. While the Obama administration has defended the killing of Anwar, it has never publicly explained why Abdulrahman was targeted in a separate drone strike two weeks later.
Spanish agents in Syria are cooperating with Operation Gallant Phoenix, a U.S.-led effort to identify fighters from Western nations who have joined Islamic State (ISIS) and Al Qaeda-affiliated groups in the region, counter-terrorism sources told EL PAÍS.
“New Zealand began participating in Operation Gallant Phoenix in late 2014 in support of our efforts to uncover information relating to the location of a New Zealander taken hostage by ISIS,” Jacinda Ardern said.
Ahead of a conference in Berlin Monday, Berners-Lee tweeted a warning of the risks faced.
He wrote: „If we fail to defend the free and open web, we risk a digital dystopia of entrenched inequality and abuse of rights.“
In an earlier statement on his foundation’s website, he called the web „one of the defining opportunities of our time,“ adding that collaborative action must be taken „to prevent the web being misused by those who want to exploit, divide and undermine.“
The technology carries major national security implications because quantum computers potentially could break traditional internet security programs or other codes.
Developing viable quantum computers has proved to be hugely challenging because they rely on superconductivity that can only be achieved in temperatures close to absolute zero.
Any instability in the qubits, for example from vibrations, can lead to ‘noise’ that causes calculation errors and undermines a quantum computer’s power to solve problems.
Earlier this month, IBM announced it was joining forces with a German research institute to explore the potential of quantum computing, backed by a government plan to invest $717million over two years in wider research in the field.
The Indian government has asked third party contractors to help it build a massive surveillance network utilizing thousands of cameras and the current cream of the facial recognition crop at the time of deployment. The whole thing needs to be in place less than 8 months after the contract is secured, suggesting the government is more than happy to move forward with whatever it has on hand rather than whatever might actually do the job well.
It’s also climbing the global censorship charts, trailing only Russia, China, and Turkey in various social media platform demographics. But it is the king of Facebook censorship, delivering more takedown demands to Facebook than closest rival, Russia. When you’re out-censoring Russia, you’re playing the censorship game right.
While terrorism in the U.S. is relatively rare, over the last decade most politically motivated violence has come at the hands of far-right extremists. Despite that reality, the FBI has devoted disproportionate resources to the surveillance of nonviolent civil society groups and protest movements, particularly on the left, using its mandate to protect national security to target scores of individuals posing no threat but opposing government policies and practices.
Police officers from Greece and other European Union countries took part in a four-day training seminar in Veria, northern Greece about dealing with hostage situations involving terrorists.
The seminar, which ended on Friday, was organized by the European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Training (CEPOL) and was attended by 29 certified negotiators from EU member-states, experts from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) of the US, Scotland Yard and French officers
Now, records show how far beyond Silicon Valley the practice extends — encompassing scores of banks, credit agencies, cellphone carriers and even universities.
The demands can scoop up a variety of information, including usernames, locations, IP addresses and records of purchases. They don’t require a judge’s approval and usually come with a gag order, leaving them shrouded in secrecy. Fewer than 20 entities, most of them tech companies, have ever revealed that they’ve received the subpoenas, known as national security letters.
The implant has access to all the database files (on the victim’s phone) used by popular end-to-end encryption apps like Whatsapp, Telegram and iMessage. We can see here screenshots of the apps on the left, and on the right the contents of the database files stolen by the implant which contain the unencrypted, plain-text of the messages sent and received using the apps:
There’s something thus far which is conspicuous only by its absence: is any of this encrypted? The short answer is no: they really do POST everything via HTTP (not HTTPS) and there is no asymmetric (or even symmetric) encryption applied to the data which is uploaded. Everything is in the clear. If you’re connected to an unencrypted WiFi network this information is being broadcast to everyone around you, to your network operator and any intermediate network hops to the command and control server.
This means that not only is the end-point of the end-to-end encryption offered by messaging apps compromised; the attackers then send all the contents of the end-to-end encrypted messages in plain text over the network to their server.
I recommend that these posts are read in the following order:
“To be targeted might mean simply being born in a certain geographic region or being part of a certain ethnic group,” he said. “All that users can do is be conscious of the fact that mass exploitation still exists and behave accordingly; treating their mobile devices as both integral to their modern lives, yet also as devices which when compromised, can upload their every action into a database to potentially be used against them.”
The fact that there are no diplomatic ties between Israel and the UAE and other Persian Gulf countries has not prevented the shared interests of the countries in the region to forge an extensive unofficial relationship, including in business, military and political spheres. In the case of Israel and the Gulf states, one main shared interest is their mutual enemy: Iran.
However, as Haaretz points out, “it is interesting to discover that Israel’s name is totally absent from the hundreds of thousands of words describing the transaction in detail. The only mention of the country is in one document originating in Switzerland that describes the structure of AGT. It mentions in German that Kochavi is an Israeli citizen.”
The Israeli daily also notes that this deal is not Kochavi’s first project on behalf of the UAE, pointing to the installation of thousands of cameras, sensors and license-plate readers in Abu Dhabi in a bid to turn the capital into a “smart city”.
„Police use of facial recognition software is the latest example of Orwellian technology that violates our privacy and civil liberties under the guise of public safety and it must stop,“ Sarah Ford, a Bernie Sanders campaign spokesperson, told CNN Business on Monday.
„Bernie is proud to join cities like San Francisco in banning the use of this technology for policing and, as president, will enact a nationwide ban on facial recognition software for policing, including at the state and local levels,“ Ford added.
„The police had 30 tweets of mine. I asked the officer, ‘What’s the worst one you’ve got? Which one comes closest to the edge of being dangerously criminal?’ He said, ‘Well, there is this limerick’. I replied to say that I hadn’t written any limericks. He said, ‘No, but you have retweeted a limerick’. He read it to me, and I was like, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me’. It wasn’t even a limerick. It was a lyric from a feminist song. He told me I had to stop doing this. I asked again if I had done anything wrong. And that is when he said the immortal line: ‘I need to check your thinking.’ „
According to a 2013 survey, 30 states and the federal government permitted the analysis of DNA samples collected from individuals who are arrested or charged, but not convicted, of certain crimes. These databases generally did not include low-level offenders.
New York State law requires a conviction before someone’s DNA can be included in the state-operated DNA databank. But databases built by local authorities are not subject to the state rules.
This is not the first time the FBI has sought access to a wide array of social media data. In 2016, the agency announced it had hired the social media analysis company Dataminr to allow law enforcement to „search the complete Twitter firehose, in near real-time, using customizable filters.“ Dataminr, which looks at open source information only, is also contracted by media outlets including CNN.
In a broad policy speech earlier this year, the head of Germany’s domestic intelligence agency, Thomas Haldenwang, called for increased patrolling of digital communication, including social media. German law permits officials to search through data in the digital sphere in the face of certain threats, including domestic terrorism.
Partly inspired by Germany’s social media hate speech law, France’s Parliament recently started debating a similar bill.
„From police partnerships with Amazon’s Ring doorbells to these privately contracted spying balloons,“ she said, „a dystopian surveillance state is being built in plain sight, by government agencies with authoritarian dreams and corporations willing to trample our rights to turn a profit.“
It’s the first time federal legislation has addressed limits on technology and tenants.
Thousands of facial-recognition requests, internal documents and emails over the past five years, obtained through public-records requests by researchers with Georgetown Law’s Center on Privacy and Technology and provided to The Washington Post, reveal that federal investigators have turned state departments of motor vehicles databases into the bedrock of an unprecedented surveillance infrastructure.
Police have long had access to fingerprints, DNA and other “biometric data” taken from criminal suspects. But the DMV records contain the photos of a vast majority of a state’s residents, most of whom have never been charged with a crime.
The police raid on the ABC was the first thing a group of visiting ASEAN journalists asked about when we met at Ultimo a few days ago.
The journalists — from Laos, Brunei, Vietnam, Thailand, the Philippines, Singapore and Indonesia — wanted me to explain what had happened, and why.
The Guardian says that it was warned earlier this year about efforts by a cybersecurity unit in Saudi Arabia to „hack“ its computer networks.
The British newspaper published an article on Wednesday that says it was alerted by a source in Riyadh that it was being targeted by the unit following the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
The sources stressed that the Saudi intelligence services have sought to obtain advanced spyware in order to trace the Kingdom’s citizens – both in the country and abroad – amidst increasing criticism of the Saudi royal family.
Saudi Arabia therefore reached out to the Israeli market and struck a deal worth $300m with representatives of Israeli firms, the sources said, adding that both sides met and reached the deal in UK capital London.
It is easy, and for some convenient, to forget how much in journalism was changed by the arrival of WikiLeaks.
It’s perhaps one reason that he is rejected by so many journalists.
According to an EU Council document, the EU police agency Europol intends to process fingerprints and DNA traces in The Hague that are processed by the US military in war zones. This data is being exchanged in the context of Operation Gallant Phoenix, which is an intelligence project spearheaded by the US military that according to media reports, is based in Jordan. US intelligence services are also involved in this undertaking. Operation Gallant Phoenix is being coordinated by the United States Joint Special Operations Command, which commands the special units of all branches of the US military.
Alongside Operation Gallant Phoenix, the US Government has offered to set up a database on “foreign fighters” for a number of EU member states and to compare this information with the biometric data of incoming refugees.
Let me restate that: William Barr is opposed to certain, very narrow subsets of domestic surveillance. Specifically, Barr doesn’t think the government should have spied on Trump and his campaign staff, if that’s what actually happened, which Barr doesn’t actually seem to know.
But if you’re literally anyone else, domestic surveillance is just another name for national security, whether you’re a random Verizon customer or one of the world’s most useful websites.
The Wikimedia Foundation sued the federal government over domestic surveillance back in 2015. The suit lives on four years later …
Today, EU Member States agreed to give two mandates to the Commission to engage in international negotiations to improve cross-border access to electronic evidence in criminal investigations.The Council agreed to provide the Commission with negotiating mandates for negotiations with the United States and for the Second Additional Protocol to the Council of Europe “Budapest” Convention on Cybercrime.
One journalist is being investigated for reporting that several boats filled with asylum seekers recently tried to reach Australia from Sri Lanka. Another reporter had her home raided by the authorities this week after reporting on a government plan to expand surveillance powers.
Then on Wednesday, the Australian federal police showed up at the main public broadcaster with a warrant for notes, story pitches, emails, and even the diaries for entire teams of journalists and senior editors — all in connection with a 2017 article about Australian special forces being investigated over possible war crimes in Afghanistan.
The Australian Federal Police’s raid of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation overnight is a national embarrassment.
The story supposedly linked to the AFP warrant had been published by Smethurst on April 29, 2018. More than a year had elapsed, with little in the way of public murmurings. Australians have, for the most part, fallen under the anaesthetist’s spell regarding intrusive, unnecessary and dangerous national security laws. Another set of them would hardly matter.
But since the story, titled “Let Us Spy on Aussies” broke last year, the security wallahs have been attempting to root out the source, mobilising the AFP in the process. The account detailed information on discussions between the Home Affairs and Defence departments on the possibility of granting the Australian Signals Directorate powers to monitor the emails, bank records and text messages of Australian citizens. Letters between Secretary of Home Affairs Mike Pezzullo and Defence Secretary Greg Moriarty featured.
John Lyons live tweeted as AFP and ABC lawyers combed through documents to determine which documents were eligible to be handed over under the search warrant. Picture: John Lyons
Australian Federal Police officers are raiding the ABC’s Sydney headquarters over a series of 2017 stories known as The Afghan Files. ABC Head of Investigations, John Lyons was in the room during the raid, and says the warrant gives the AFP powers to see, change and delete the data they find. Mr Lyons says he’s „never seen an assault on the media as savage“ as this. The stories, by ABC investigative journalists Dan Oakes and Sam Clark, revealed allegations of unlawful killings and misconduct by Australian special forces in Afghanistan and were based off hundreds of pages of secret Defence documents leaked to the ABC.
Australian Federal Police officers have left the ABC’s Sydney headquarters more than eight hours after a raid began over a series of 2017 stories known as the Afghan Files.
The stories, by ABC investigative journalists Dan Oakes and Sam Clark, revealed allegations of unlawful killings and misconduct by Australian special forces in Afghanistan and were based off hundreds of pages of secret Defence documents leaked to the ABC
It’s understood the ABC and the AFP have been in talks about the search warrant since September, when it was first brought to the attention of the public broadcaster.
28.2.2019 A prominent Sydney lawyer who served as legal adviser to Australia’s special forces in Afghanistan has been charged with theft over war crimes investigation files that were allegedly published in the media.
Australian Federal Police officers arrested retired major David William McBride, 55, at Sydney Airport as he sought to depart Australia to return to his new home in Europe in September last year.
Cenk Uygur of The Young Turks interviews Senator Bernie Sanders. Support the Home of Progressives
Automated facial recognition is a grave threat to privacy and the presumption of innocence.