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How Tech Vendors Help Governments Spy On Their Citizens 102

Posted by Soulskill
from the let-me-count-the-ways dept.
jfruhlinger writes "Most Slashdotters — even those living in democratic countries — would probably be unsurprised to know that their governments are spying on them. But most people are not aware of how complicit security vendors, who publicly work to protect the public from such electronic eavesdropping, are complicit in such monitoring. All this and more is revealed in the latest Wikieaks document dump, the Spy Files."
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How Tech Vendors Help Governments Spy On Their Citizens

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  • Ok. analyze THIS. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by unity100 (970058) on Friday December 02, 2011 @06:20PM (#38244462) Homepage Journal
    Can you come up and say that wikileaks hasnt done anything useful now ?
  • Re:Ok. analyze THIS. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by countertrolling (1585477) on Friday December 02, 2011 @06:32PM (#38244618) Journal

    ...Assange and satisfying his ego

    All that is mass media's (apparently successful) attempt to divert attention away from the leaks and to focus more on the "crimes" of the leakers.

  • by Phoenix666 (184391) on Friday December 02, 2011 @06:45PM (#38244832)

    Every government, including the American one, has limited resources. Every government, especially the American one, has bureaucratic constraints. Think of the slowest, dumbest Fortune 500 company you can, and then think of the slowest, dumbest PHB within that corporation, and then multiply that by 1000. That's the caliber of people who work for governments. It's the nature of the beast: create a system where ass-kissing, not merit, determine career progress, and then divorce that entirely from a mitigating profit motive, and you have government.

    These are the people who are buying the services/products of these surveillance companies. These are the people who don't read the user manuals of the products/services that these companies sell. These are the people who boss around the "technical" staff who are tasked with reading the user manuals but who frankly don't get paid enough to put up with this shit.

    That is the reality of the surveillance net.

    Now, consider that these days you, me, and every Tom, Dick, and Harry out there has access to virtually the same tech the governments and their corporate enablers do. Consider that even the cost factor for said tech is racing to zero. That is, the governments and companies are not using some secretly acquired alien technology that uses physics that the rest of the world doesn't grasp yet. You and I can understand the same physical laws and technology that the governments and the corporations in their employ do. And we do.

    So why don't we turn it all around and crowd-source surveillance of them? Why not minutely track the exact location of every Congressman sneaking off to boink a 20 year old intern? Why not put Jamie Dimon's cell phone conversations on a streaming service, available to anyone in the world to listen to? Why not put them under the same microscope that they want to put us under?

    After all, if the technological balance of power is at or near parity, then the deciding factor becomes how many people can you get to make sense of the data; and there are vastly more of us than there are of them to do that.

    Let's once and for all shatter this venomous illusion of authority and competence that governments and corporations have cultivated and exploited for millenia. Let's excise the incalculable damage they have done to human advancement and win a better world for ourselves.

    I for one am so very tired of the stunted one they have forced on us.

  • Re:And by the way (Score:4, Interesting)

    by LVSlushdat (854194) on Friday December 02, 2011 @07:42PM (#38245532)

    dont you find it weird that governments are spying on their own citizens MORE than they spy on the enemy ? and even do it more effectively ?

    Don't you realize WE are now enemies of the government? When DOJ/FBI puts out pamphlets saying that loners/Constitutionalists/Teapartiers are terrorists, you KNOW we are now considered the enemy of this current regime...

  • Re:Ok. analyze THIS. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Kagura (843695) on Friday December 02, 2011 @09:13PM (#38246410)

    Can you come up and say that wikileaks hasnt done anything useful now ?

    Are you kidding? These are a bunch of company brochures and a few publicly released reports from 160 intelligence contractors. Where is the leak? It's convenient that they put these all in one place for us, but these were already readily available. Wikileaks is now leaking public documents to the public.

  • Re:Ok. analyze THIS. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by haruchai (17472) on Saturday December 03, 2011 @12:49AM (#38247450)
    For starters, there is the "Collateral Murder" video they released - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5rXPrfnU3G0 [youtube.com] ; this was after Reuters, who lost 2 reporters in the shelling, were unsatisfied with the "investigation" that concluded it was a legal engagement of war and requested the video from the lead chopper, which was denied.
  • Re:Ok. analyze THIS. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by haruchai (17472) on Saturday December 03, 2011 @12:08PM (#38250176)
    A "legal" international military engagement is not a license for live target practice by the armed forces of a purportedly civilized nation.
    The conversation between the pilots and the base clearly indicates that there are no US personnel within easy range of a small bunch of men, only 2 of which appear to be armed. The helicopter is itself in no danger from these men - who were clustered in a circle all facing inward when the firing began. That's a pretty weak battle formation -were they planning a mass suicide? The delay between the sound of the chopper's guns and the bullets' impacts is nearly 2 seconds, which, according to the postings I've seen by guys with combat experience puts the chopper a mile out ( which seems to be standard procedure ) and well out of range of AK-47s and even RPGs. But, while the first set of firing could potentially be excused as there were individuals with weapons, you would really have to burn any "objectivity" out of your eye to defend the firing on the van. I'd be curious to read your explanation as to how that bit of slaughter was warranted. Before you reply, might i trouble you to read http://www.hrweb.org/legal/geneva1.html#Article [hrweb.org] 15 ?

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