State of Surveillance

The Weakest Link

With $20 of Gear from Amazon, Nearly Anyone Can Make This IMSI-Catcher in 30 Minutes

Surveillance takes on different character when it trickles down to more ordinary, everyday users. The significance and threat from IMSI-catchers is multiplied when a lot more people can deploy one using cheap tech from Amazon and free code from Github.
Joseph Cox
11.16.18
The Weakest Link

It’s Amateur Hour in the World of Spyware and Victims Will Pay the Price

We’re living in the golden age of spyware and government hacking, with companies rushing to join a blossoming billion dollar market. The weakest among us—activists or journalists—will suffer the consequences if we don’t regulate it appropriately.
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai
11.13.18
The Weakest Link

How to Use an iPod Touch as a Secure Device Instead of a Phone

From SIM-jacking, to SS7, to dodgy telco data selling, for some people an iPod may be a better security decision than using a normal phone.
Joseph Cox
11.12.18
The Weakest Link

Hacking Team Hacker Phineas Fisher Has Gotten Away With It

Leaked court documents show that Italian authorities have no idea who hacked the government spyware maker Hacking Team.
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai
11.12.18
State of Surveillance

Pentagon Wants to Predict Anti-Trump Protests Using Social Media Surveillance

A series of research projects, patent filings, and policy changes indicate that the Pentagon wants to use social media surveillance to quell domestic insurrection and rebellion.
Nafeez Ahmed
10.30.18
Hacking

How ‘Mr. Hashtag’ Helped Saudi Arabia Spy on Dissidents

Saud Al-Qahtani, a close advisor of crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, was tasked with buying Hacking Team spyware, and apparently moonlighted as a member of online cybercrime website Hack Forums.
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai
10.29.18
State of Surveillance

Government Spyware Vendor Left Customer, Victim Data Online for Everyone to See

The Germany-based spyware startup Wolf Intelligence exposed its own data, including surveillance target’s information, passports scans of its founder and family, and recordings of meetings.
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai
10.24.18
State of Surveillance

German Art Activists Get Passport Using Digitally Altered Photo of Two Women Merged Together

It's part of an artwork called “Mask ID,” a campaign that’s encouraging ordinary citizens to “flood government databases with misinformation” and disrupt mass surveillance programs.
Caroline Christie
10.9.18
State of Surveillance

They Got 'Everything': Inside a Demo of NSO Group's Powerful iPhone Malware

A source managed to see Israeli surveillance vendor NSO Group’s powerful iPhone malware up close. Despite a wave of highly controversial customers, the company appears to be popular worldwide.
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai
Joseph Cox
9.20.18
State of Surveillance

Cyber Sleuths Find Traces of Infamous iPhone and Android Spyware ‘Pegasus’ in 45 Countries

A new report by digital human rights researchers reveals that the infamous spyware Pegasus, made by NSO Group, has traces in 45 countries around the world, including the United States.
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai
9.18.18
State of Surveillance

Supreme Court Says Cops Need to Get a Warrant to Get Your Phone Location Data

In a much-anticipated decision, the Supreme Court changed the course of history, siding with privacy activists and giving Americans stronger privacy protections in the digital age.
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai
6.22.18
Facebook

Report: Facebook Gave Chinese Device Manufacturers Special Access to User Data

One one of the firms, Huawei, is on the Pentagon's no-buy list because of alleged connections to the Chinese government.
Karl Bode
6.6.18