An unprecedented number of Americans living outside the U.S. have requested ballots, up seven times over the last midterm election in 2014, according to data from the non-partisan U.S. Vote Foundation, which registers a large portion of overseas voters. The group declined to disclose the number who had requested ballots.
Whom Americans vote for is private. But other information in their state voter files is public information; depending on the state, it can include details like their name, address, phone number and party affiliation and when they voted. The apps try to match the people in a smartphone’s contacts to their voter files, then display some of those details.
Some companies may misrepresent things, or try to play down stories, but outright fabrication is not at all common (and the consequences of a company doing it would be severe). And here, both Amazon and Apple’s denials were so clear, so specific and so adamant that it raised serious questions about the reporting.
The UK government is still polishing its porn filtering law. The latest updates to the law show there’s been some effort put forth to make the law less stupid, but even these additions don’t make the law (or its implementation) much better.
It’s no secret that the Vietnamese government is no fan of the open internet. All the way back in 2002 we wrote about the government requiring people to register just to create a website. That same year we were writing about people being arrested for posting criticism of the government. In 2008, we wrote about the Vietnamese government banning „subversive“ blogs as well. With the rise of social media, Vietnam has shifted its focus there. In 2013, it banned news reporting on social media, saying it should be for personal use only. In 2014, we wrote about how the government was abusing Facebook’s own reporting tools to shut down dissenters from using the site. And at the beginning of this year, we wrote about how the government now employed around 10,000 people whose only job was to monitor the internet for dissent.
And now it’s going to get even worse — to a degree that might even lead some of the big internet companies to leave Vietnam entirely. And we have the NSA (partially) to blame.
(10.12.2012) Transit authorities in cities across the country are quietly installing microphone-enabled surveillance systems on public buses that would give them the ability to record and store private conversations, according to documents obtained by a news outlet.
The systems are being installed in San Francisco, Baltimore, and other cities with funding from the Department of Homeland Security in some cases, according to the Daily, which obtained copies of contracts, procurement requests, specs and other documents.
(28.5.2012) Milwaukee is one of an increasing number of cities around the country — just under 70 to date, including some in the New York area — that are using a gunshot detection system called ShotSpotter to pinpoint the location of gunfire seconds after it occurs.
“We will know not only that someone has entered the airspace in this region, but also that somewhere a plane is only operating on the runway, be it in Israel or Saudi Arabia or even in Europe,” Vladimir Mikheyev, first deputy director of government-owned Concern Radio-Electronic Technologies, told Russia’s Tass news agency
In the decade after the 9/11 attacks, the New York City Police Department moved to put millions of New Yorkers under constant watch. Warning of terrorism threats, the department created a plan to carpet Manhattan’s downtown streets with thousands of cameras and had, by 2008, centralized its video surveillance operations to a single command center. Two years later, the NYPD announced that the command center, known as the Lower Manhattan Security Coordination Center, had integrated cutting-edge video analytics software into select cameras across the city.
A general military court issued an arrest warrant for Maj. Gen. So Gang-won, who served as the chief of staff of the Defense Security Command (DSC), for alleged involvement in monitoring the bereaved families of victims of the 2014 ferry disaster.
He is the first figure to be taken into custody since a military probe team investigating the wrongdoings of the now-disbanded DSC was launched in July.
Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey and Facebook chief operations officer Sheryl Sandberg will testify in an open hearing at the Senate Intelligence Committee next week, the committee’s chairman has confirmed.
Larry Page, chief executive of Google parent company Alphabet, was also invited but has not confirmed his attendance, a committee spokesperson confirmed to TechCrunch.
In early June 2018, an Amnesty International staff member received a suspicious WhatsApp message in Arabic. The text contained details about an alleged protest outside the Saudi embassy in Washington D.C., followed by a link to a website. Investigations by Amnesty International’s technology team revealed that clicking the link would have, according to prior knowledge, installed “Pegasus”, a sophisticated surveillance tool developed by the Israel-based company NSO Group.
Like many other Israeli startups in the security field, NSO was founded in 2010 by three veterans of the army’s premier signals intelligence unit, 8200: Niv Carmi, Omri Lavie and Shalev Hulio. They started work on Pegasus, which remains NSO’s only product, immediately after founding the company.
(17.7.2018) Privacy International has today released a report that looks at how powerful governments are financing, training and equipping countries — including authoritarian regimes — with surveillance capabilities. The report warns that rather than increasing security, this is entrenching authoritarianism.
Countries with powerful security agencies are spending literally billions to equip, finance, and train security and surveillance agencies around the world — including authoritarian regimes. This is resulting in entrenched authoritarianism, further facilitation of abuse against people, and diversion of resources from long-term development programmes.
The report, titled ‘Teach ’em to Phish: State Sponsors of Surveillance’ is available to download here.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo revealed on Friday that facial recognition cameras installed at bridge and tunnel toll plazas across New York City are scanning every driver’s face and feeding them into a massive database designed to catch suspected criminals.
A report compiled by four Egyptian and French rights groups and released Monday revealed that Paris’ sales of military equipment to Cairo had jumped from 39.6 million to 1.3 billion euros ($1.5 billion) between 2010 and 2016.
Street crime prediction “has already achieved results in Europe and the United States,” said Mami Kajita, who established the data-analysis company Singular Perturbations Inc. last year in hopes of developing a Japanese version of the methods used in the United States.
The Justice Ministry will play a key role in handling the information, which will include records on employment, tax payments and marriage that is currently being separately managed by central and local government agencies.
The system is intended to strengthen government surveillance of overstayers as the nation imports more foreign labor to ease a severe nationwide labor shortage.
This week, 24 civil liberties organizations, including EFF and the ACLU, urged Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats to report—as required by law—statistics that could help clear up just how many individuals are burdened by broad NSA surveillance of domestic telephone records. These records show who is calling whom and when, but not the content of the calls.
„If anyone did infiltrate or surveil participants in a presidential campaign for inappropriate purposes, we need to know about it and take appropriate action,“ Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said.
Political leaders and the mass media deluge the public with a constant stream of frightening incidents caused by the enemy-of-the-week: nerve gas killing dozens of little babies in Syria, Russian-directed poison assassination attempts in England and terror incidents throughout Europe, requiring an increase in domestic police state surveillance and spying. Extensively monitored bank records, intrusive workplace controls, and all personal and, especially, political communications, are in the hands of state security officials or corporate security contractors.
Hundreds of prosecuting attorneys look forward to career-enhancing investigations in perpetuity, tracking the complex networks of extended personal and family links, including long forgotten acquaintances and the contents of casual conversations. Everyone may be subject to interrogations without warrant or explanation. And the ‘media’ cheers on the process.
Political trials and convictions in court and the media are rampant. Social, work-place and academic self censorship and blacklisting of dissident voices have become pervasive and accepted.
Elections and appointments are rigged by corporate and special interests to favor the most bellicose ideologues who manufacture the pretexts for war.
Political intimidation, trade wars and sanctions run amok .
(12.September 2014) We take advantage of the capabilities that we have over these people in order to put ourselves at ease. We take advantage of the impact that we have on their lives. Sometimes it involves truly harming a person’s life, or their soul. I mean extortion whereby they must hide things from people around them. It can really screw up their lives. It made me feel omnipotent.
The patent for the ultrasonic wristband was filed in 2016 by Jonathan Cohn, a senior technical program manager for Amazon Go, the checkout-less store which recently opened in Seattle.
In a statement to technology site The Verge, an Amazon spokesperson said that the speculation that it times the toilet breaks of employees is “misguided.”
The company said it could increase the overall efficiency of the workers by manipulating the frequency and length of break times to reduce mental stress.
Hangzhou Zhongheng Electric is just one example of the large-scale application of brain surveillance devices to monitor people’s emotions and other mental activities in the workplace, according to scientists and companies involved in the government-backed projects.
Government-backed surveillance projects are deploying brain-reading technology to detect changes in emotional states in employees on the production line, the military and at the helm of high-speed trains
Amazon has patented designs for a bracelet that would monitor workers’ hand movements and use vibrations – known as “haptic feedback” – to point them in the right direction if they put their hands on the wrong places.
That identification process has two stages: an initial screening phase, in which a “crime intelligence analyst” subjectively decides whether the police records, like arrest reports and field interview cards, associated with an individual are “relevant” enough to move them to a “workup” phase. The “workup” involves software provided by Palantir that pulls data on criminal history and affiliations, and from license plate readers and social media networks, and uses it to create a “chronic offender score” for the individual.
Facial recognition technology stars in three recent Hollywood movies: Isle of Dogs, Ready Player One, and Black Panther. In Wes Anderson’s stop-motion near-future Japan, a corrupt mayor uses the technology to capture the Little Pilot who only wants to save his dog. In Steven Spielberg’s dystopic America, a megalomaniacal billionaire uses drones equipped with face scanners to find one of the movie’s heroes as she drives her van through an impoverished futuristic cityscape. And in Ryan Coogler’s Wakanda, the royal technologist’s team uses her facial recognition tool to identify intruders in the kingdom.
Along with intensified surveillance and monitoring operations by state military-intelligence agencies, this new regime of state-sponsored censorship constitutes a dangerous and unprecedented global threat to freedom of speech and other fundamental freedom of speech.