Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

News & Supplemental  

Snowden’s Ride, Part I: Eddie the Friendly Spook and the BND

Rein­hard Gehlen: Nazi head of post­war Ger­man intelligence

Dave Emory’s entire life­time of work is avail­able on a flash drive that can be obtained here. (The flash drive includes the anti-fascist books avail­able on this site.)

COMMENT: In our con­tin­u­ing analy­sis of Snowden’s Ride (U-2 Inci­dent, II), we take note of the pos­si­bil­ity that Eddie the Friendly Spook may be in the employ of BND–Germany’s for­eign intel­li­gence agency and the suc­ces­sor to the Rein­hard Gehlen Nazi spy out­fit. It is pos­si­ble that he may have been recruited while posted to Europe for CIA. 

That Snow­den may be work­ing for an Under­ground Reich ele­ment of CIA and/or NSA is also to be considered.

It is well beyond the scope of this post to syn­op­size the analy­sis and lines of argu­ment set forth in pre­vi­ous dis­cus­sions of Eddie the Friendly Spook. Please exam­ine at length and detail our pre­vi­ous entires on this sub­ject: Part IPart IIPart IIIPart IVPart VPart VI, Part VII.

As Fast Eddie and his far-right, Nazi-linked Wik­iLeaks asso­ciates run inter­fer­ence for Ger­many, the German-dominated EU and the BND, it is worth tak­ing note of a num­ber of things:

  • In the back­ground of both Eddie the Friendly Spook, as well as his co-conspirators at Wik­iLeaks are far-right, fas­cist ele­ments, espe­cially the big money men who loom large in the back­ground such as Peter Thiel and Carl Lund­strom.
  • Both Snow­den and Assange hold far-right polit­i­cal views in direct con­trast with their man­u­fac­tured pub­lic per­sonae of “cru­saders for free­dom and human rights.” Snow­den decamped first to China and then to Rus­sia, nei­ther a bas­tion of inter­net free­dom and civil lib­er­ties. Snowden’s actions only make sense in the con­text of work­ing to dam­age Obama.
  • Snowden’s actions give every indi­ca­tion of being an intel­li­gence com­mu­nity desta­bi­liza­tion oper­a­tion. We ini­tially thought that Obama and was the tar­get and that cer­tainly appears to be the case. It may well alien­ate young, ide­al­is­tic vot­ers from Obama and, per­haps, direct naifs toward the 2016 can­di­dacy of Rand Paul, the son of crypto-Nazi Ron Paul, Cit­i­zen Snowden’s can­di­date of choice. Rand Paul has been walk­ing point in the attack on NSA.
  • How­ever, as the “op” has devel­oped, it appears to be far larger than just an anti-Obama gam­bit, and directed at the United States and U.K. as well.
  • Snow­den leaked infor­ma­tion about NSA spy­ing on Ger­many (and now the EU) just as Obama was going to meet Angela Merkel.
  • Now, Ger­many (and the German-dominated EU) are attack­ing both NSA and GCHQ over spy­ing on Ger­many and EU. We will explore this more fully in future posts on the sub­ject. (See text excerpts below.)
  • We note that, just like a slight-of-hand artist who has his audi­ence watch­ing the wav­ing of a brightly-colored ker­chief while a rab­bit is osten­si­bly pulled from a hat, Germany/BND/EU has much to gain from direct­ing atten­tion and ire toward NSA and GCHQ.
  • The focus on “Evil Amer­ica and Evil Britain” eclipses a Ger­man court rul­ing that the BND can keep its file on Adolph Eich­mann secret. The sup­posed rea­son is that to dis­close this would (ahem) reveal sen­si­tive data that would be bet­ter kept secret. This “data” con­cerns a man who has been dead for over fifty years! Don’t expect Wik­iLeaks, Snow­den, Anonymous/Pirate Bay or any of the rest of that crowd to pur­sue this! (See text excerpts below.)
  • Exam­in­ing the Eich­mann sit­u­a­tion would reveal the oper­a­tions of the Under­ground Reich (See text excerpt below.)
  • In addi­tion to Eich­mann him­self, many of his top aides worked for BND, includ­ing Alois Brun­ner and Walther Rauff.
  • Look­ing beyond the BND/Gehlen org itself, the de-nazification of Ger­many itself is a myth. Not even Der Spiegel can deny that.
  • Focus­ing pub­lic atten­tion on “bad NSA, bad GCHQ, bad U.S., bad U.K.” dis­tracts from the fact that Ger­many has not only been doing the same thing, but is ramp­ing up its own, ille­gal elec­tronic inter­cep­tion pro­grams.
  • BND has been using Deutsche Telekom to do the same things that it com­plains about vis a vis NSA.

In future posts on this sub­ject, we will exam­ine other con­sid­er­a­tions fig­ur­ing in Germany/BND/EU/Underground Reich motives for attack­ing NSA, GCHQ and Obama.

“Ger­man Court Dis­misses Newspaper’s Bid for Full Access to Intel­li­gence Files on Nazi Eich­mann” [AP]; The Wash­ing­ton Post; 6/27/2013.

EXCERPT: Germany’s for­eign intel­li­gence agency can keep secret some of its records on Adolf Eich­mann, the man known as the archi­tect of the Nazi Holo­caust, a court ruled Thursday.

The Fed­eral Admin­is­tra­tive Court ruled that the intel­li­gence agency was within its rights to black out pas­sages from the files sought by a jour­nal­ist attempt­ing to shed light on whether West Ger­man author­i­ties knew in the 1950s where Eich­mann had fled after World War II.

Thursday’s rul­ing fol­lowed a deci­sion last year in which the court said the Fed­eral Intel­li­gence Ser­vice had to release some files it had pre­vi­ously kept secret.

Israeli agents abducted Eich­mann in Buenos Aires in 1960 and brought him to Jerusalem for trial. Eich­mann, who helped orga­nize the exter­mi­na­tion of Europe’s Jews as the head of the Gestapo’s Jew­ish affairs office dur­ing the World War II, was found guilty of war crimes, sen­tenced to death and hanged in 1962.

The mass-circulation Bild daily, whose reporter sued for the files’ full release, has reported that West Ger­man intel­li­gence knew as early as 1952 that he was in Argentina.

In 2006, the CIA released doc­u­ments show­ing that it wrote to its West Ger­man coun­ter­part in 1958, say­ing it had infor­ma­tion that Eich­mann “is reported to have lived in Argentina under the alias ‘Clemens’ since 1952” — both his cor­rect where­abouts and only a slightly dif­fer­ent alias, which was actu­ally Ricardo Klement.

The Ger­man intel­li­gence ser­vice said in an emailed reac­tion to the rul­ing that most of the files it holds on Eich­mann are already pub­lic and only a small por­tion still needs to be blacked out. It said that the need to do so stems from laws on “pro­tect­ing state secu­rity inter­ests” and data pro­tec­tion laws.

A lawyer for Bild’s pub­lisher, Axel Springer, said after Thursday’s rul­ing that it reserved the right to take the case to Germany’s high­est court. Christoph Partsch said in a state­ment that Germany’s inter­ests would be harmed by redact­ing the files, not by releas­ing them.

Mar­tin Bor­mann: Nazi in Exile; Paul Man­ning; Copy­right 1981 [HC]; Lyle Stu­art Inc.; ISBN 0–8184–0309–8; pp. 289–90.

EXCERPT:. . . . Israeli agents who move too closely to these cen­ters of power are elim­i­nated. One such ter­mi­na­tion was Fritz Bauer, for­merly attor­ney gen­eral for the State of Hesse in Frank­furt, a sur­vivor of Auschwitz and the man who tipped off the Israeli Mossad about the pres­ence of Adolf Eich­mann in Buenos Aires, who was killed on orders of Gen­eral Mueller. His body was found in his bath­tub and listed as “death by heart attack” by the Frank­furt police. The real cause: cyanide spray that causes heart stop­page with­out detec­tion; the same modus operandi that Mueller used to kill the Bor­mann stand-ins that were placed in the Berlin freight yards in April of 1945.

Mueller’s ruth­less­ness even today is what deters Artur Axmann from alter­ing his tes­ti­mony that he saw Bor­mann lying dead on the road­way the night of their escape from the Fuehrerbunker, May 1–2, 1945.To this day, Axmann, the only so-called liv­ing wit­ness to the ‘death’ of Bor­mann in Berlin, knows his life is in jeop­ardy if he reverses him­self. Gen­eral Mueller is thor­ough and has a long mem­ory, and for a Nazi such as Axmann to go against Mueller’s orig­i­nal direc­tive would make him a trai­tor; ret­ri­bu­tion would surely follow. . . .

Ger­many Demands Answers from Britain over GCHQ Sur­veil­lance” by Bon­nie Malkin; The Tele­graph [UK]; 6/26/2013.

EXCERPT: On Tues­day, jus­tice min­is­ter Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger sent two let­ters to the British jus­tice sec­re­tary, Chris Grayling, and the home sec­re­tary, Theresa May, demand­ing to know the extent to which Ger­man cit­i­zens have been tar­geted and warn­ing that democ­racy could not flour­ish when states employ a “veil of secrecy” to obscure their actions.

Describ­ing the rev­e­la­tions over GCHQ’s sur­veil­lance oper­a­tion as “like a Hol­ly­wood night­mare”, Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger asked for clar­i­fi­ca­tion of the legal basis for Project Tem­pora and demanded to know whether the pro­gramme has been autho­rised by any judi­cial author­ity, accord­ing to the Guardian. She also asked for infor­ma­tion on the spe­cific nature of data that was col­lected and whether “con­crete sus­pi­cions” trig­gered the data collection.

“I feel that these issues must be raised in a Euro­pean Union con­text at minister’s level and should be dis­cussed in the con­text of ongo­ing dis­cus­sions on the EU data pro­tec­tion reg­u­la­tion,” Ms Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger wrote.

The move by the Ger­many gov­ern­ment to high­light its dis­com­fort over the actions of GCHQ is the first time Britain has been asked to pub­licly jus­tify its mass sur­veil­lance operation.

The Home Office said it would not com­ment on “pri­vate cor­re­spon­dence”, while the Min­istry of Jus­tice said only that it would respond to the let­ter in due course. William Hague, mean­while, has shrugged off crit­i­cism, say­ing Britain should have noth­ing but pride in its “indis­pens­able” intelligence-sharing rela­tion­ship with the US. . . .

“Ger­many to Spend Mil­lions to Expand Inter­net Sur­veil­lance — Report” by Uta Winkhaus; Europe Online Mag­a­zine; 6/16/2013.

EXCERPT: Germany‘s main intel­li­gence agency plans to expand inter­net sur­veil­lance by launch­ing a five-year pro­gramme that will cost 100 mil­lion euros (133 mil­lion dol­lars), Der Spiegel mag­a­zine reported Sunday.

The report about the fed­eral intel­li­gence service‘s (BND) plans comes days after whistle­blower Edward Snow­den revealed details of top-secret US gov­ern­ment sur­veil­lance pro­grammes that gath­ered vast tele­phone records and inter­net data.

With the addi­tional fund­ing, the BND will add 100 new employ­ees to its tech­ni­cal intel­li­gence depart­ment and bol­ster its com­put­ing and server capac­i­ties, the report said.

The gov­ern­ment has already released a first tranche of 5 mil­lion euros, accord­ing to Der Spiegel.

To fight ter­ror­ism and orga­nized crime, the BND is per­mit­ted by law to mon­i­tor 20 per cent of all com­mu­ni­ca­tions between Ger­many and for­eign nations. Until now, it only had the capac­ity to check on 5 per cent of traf­fic — emails, tele­phone calls, Face­book and Skype chats — because of tech­ni­cal issues.

With the new capa­bil­i­ties, the BND wants to ensure that cross-border traf­fic can be mon­i­tored as com­pre­hen­sively as pos­si­ble, just as is done in the United States by the National Secu­rity Agency (NSA), which spe­cial­izes in elec­tronic intelligence. . . .

“The World from Berlin: Elec­tronic Sur­veil­lance Scan­dal Hits Ger­many” by David Gor­don Smith and Kris­ten Allen;  Der Spiegel; 10/10/2011.

EXCERPT: A Ger­man hacker orga­ni­za­tion claims to have cracked spy­ing soft­ware allegedly used by Ger­man author­i­ties. The Tro­jan horse has func­tions which go way beyond those allowed by Ger­man law. The news has sparked a wave of out­rage among politi­cians and media commentators.

It sounds like some­thing out of George Orwell’s novel “1984” — a com­puter pro­gram that can remotely con­trol someone’s com­puter with­out their knowl­edge, search its com­plete con­tents and use it to con­duct audio-visual sur­veil­lance via the micro­phone or webcam.

But the spy soft­ware that the famous Ger­man hacker orga­ni­za­tion Chaos Com­puter Club has obtained is not used by crim­i­nals look­ing to steal credit-card data or send spam e-mails. If the CCC is to be believed, the so-called “Tro­jan horse” soft­ware was used by Ger­man author­i­ties. The case has already trig­gered a polit­i­cal shock­wave in the coun­try and could have far-reaching consequences.

On Sat­ur­day, the CCC announced that it had been given hard dri­ves con­tain­ing a “state spy­ing soft­ware” which had allegedly been used by Ger­man inves­ti­ga­tors to carry out sur­veil­lance of Inter­net com­mu­ni­ca­tion. The orga­ni­za­tion had ana­lyzed the soft­ware and found it to be full of defects. They also found that it trans­mit­ted infor­ma­tion via a server located in the US. As well as its sur­veil­lance func­tions, it could be used to plant files on an individual’s com­puter. It was also not suf­fi­ciently pro­tected, so that third par­ties with the nec­es­sary tech­ni­cal skills could hijack the Tro­jan horse’s func­tions for their own ends. The soft­ware pos­si­bly vio­lated Ger­man law, the orga­ni­za­tion said.

So-called Tro­jan horse soft­ware can be sur­rep­ti­tiously deliv­ered by a harmless-looking e-mail and installed on a user’s com­puter with­out their knowl­edge, where it can be used to, for exam­ple, scan the con­tents of a hard drive. In 2007, the Ger­man Inte­rior Min­istry announced it had designed a Tro­jan horse that could be used to search the hard dri­ves of ter­ror suspects.

Beyond the Limits

The hard dri­ves that the CCC ana­lyzed came from at least two dif­fer­ent Ger­man states. It was unclear whether the soft­ware, which is said to be at least three years old, had been used by state-level or national author­i­ties. In a Sun­day state­ment, the Inte­rior Min­istry denied that the soft­ware had been used by the Fed­eral Crim­i­nal Police Office (BKA), which is sim­i­lar to the Amer­i­can FBI. The state­ment did not explic­itly rule out the pos­si­bil­ity that the soft­ware could have been used by state-level police forces.

If the CCC’s claims are true, then the soft­ware has func­tions which were expressly for­bid­den by Germany’s high­est court, the Fed­eral Con­sti­tu­tional Court, in a land­mark 2008 rul­ing which sig­nif­i­cantly restricted what was allowed in terms of online sur­veil­lance. The court also spec­i­fied that online spy­ing was only per­mis­si­ble if there was con­crete evi­dence of dan­ger to indi­vid­u­als or society. . . .

“Secret Gov­ern­ment Doc­u­ment Reveals: Ger­man Fed­eral Police Plans To Use Gamma Fin­Fisher Spy­ware” by Andre Meis­ter; Netzpolitik.org; 1/16/2013.

EXCERPT: The Ger­man Fed­eral Police office has pur­chased the com­mer­cial Spy­ware toolkit Fin­Fisher of Elaman/Gamma Group. This is revealed by a secret doc­u­ment of the Min­istry of the Inte­rior, which we are pub­lish­ing exclu­sively. Instead of legit­imiz­ing prod­ucts used by author­i­tar­ian regimes for the vio­la­tion of human rights, the Ger­man state should restrict the export of such state malware.

In Octo­ber 2011, Ger­man hacker orga­ni­za­tion Chaos Com­puter Club (CCC) ana­lyzed a mal­ware used by Ger­man gov­ern­ment author­i­ties. The prod­uct of the Ger­man com­pany Dig­i­Task was not just pro­grammed badly and lack­ing ele­men­tary secu­rity, it was in breach of Ger­man law. In a land­mark case, the Fed­eral Con­sti­tu­tional Court of Ger­many ruled in 2008 that sur­veil­lance soft­ware tar­get­ing telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions must be tech­no­log­i­cally lim­ited to a spe­cific task. Instead, the CCC found that the Dig­i­Task soft­ware took over the entire com­puter and included the option to remotely add fea­tures, thereby clearly vio­lat­ing the court ruling.

Since then, many Ger­man author­i­ties have stopped using Dig­i­Task spy­ware and started to cre­ate their own state mal­ware. For this task, a “Cen­ter of Com­pe­tence for Infor­ma­tion Tech­nol­ogy Sur­veil­lance (CC ITÜ)” was estab­lished, sport­ing a three mil­lion Euro bud­get and a team of 30 peo­ple. Today, the Fed­eral Min­istry of the Inte­rior is inform­ing the Fed­eral Par­lia­ment Bun­destag about the center’s progress and work. Mem­bers of the Finance Com­mit­tee of the Ger­man Par­lia­ment are receiv­ing a clas­si­fied doc­u­ment, that we are now publishing. . . .

“Ger­man Intel­li­gence Scrubs Euroean Records after Wik­iLeaks Expo­sure” by Wik­iLeaks staff; wikileaks.org; 11/16/2008.

EXCERPT: Between Fri­day night and Sun­day morn­ing, a mas­sive dele­tion oper­a­tion took place at the Euro­pean Inter­net address reg­is­ter (RIPE) to scrub ref­er­ences to a cover used by Germany’s pre­mier spy agency, the Bun­desnachrich­t­en­di­enst, or BND.

The cleanup oper­a­tion comes the night after Wik­ileaks revealed over two dozen covert BND net­works pro­vided by T-Systems (Deutsche Telekom). The IP addresses were assigned to an unreg­is­tered com­pany at a Munich-based PO box linked to T-Systems.

T-Systems purged the RIPE data­base of all addresses exposed by Wik­ileaks, mov­ing the addresses into a sev­eral giant anony­mous “Class B” address pools.

The move comes just a few hours after T-Systems Com­puter Emer­gency Response Team (CERT) con­tacted Wik­ileaks to demand removal of an inter­nal T-Systems memo list­ing the BND cover addresses. Wik­ileaks refused and T-System did not respond to requests for fur­ther detail by the time of writing.

Yet an inves­ti­ga­tion into the addresses over the week­end reveals key infor­ma­tion about the BND’s Inter­net activities. . . . .

Web­site ref­er­ences reveal that in 2006 numer­ous hosters of Inter­net web­sites com­plained about out of con­trol “data min­ing” robots from two of the BND-linked IP addresses. One of the hosters ran a pop­u­lar dis­cus­sion forum on counter-terrorism operations.

The integrity and trans­parency of the RIPE sys­tem is not assisted by the T-Systems dele­tion. Ger­man cit­i­zens may won­der at the dou­ble stan­dard. At a time when the population’s Inter­net addresses are being recorded by ISPs under laws deri­sively referred to as “Stasi 2.0″, the “real Stasi”—the BND, has had the largest telco in Ger­many scrub its addresses from the Euro­pean record within 24 hours of their exposure.



5 comments for “Snowden’s Ride, Part I: Eddie the Friendly Spook and the BND”

  1. Well Dave, I was won­der­ing how your analy­sis might come true, and here is Ger­many (pos­si­bly) bring­ing the spy in from the cold:


    Ger­man MP: EU should shel­ter Snow­den
    Pub­lished: 1 Jul 13 13:56 CET | Print version

    The Euro­pean Union should offer safe haven to fugi­tive US leaker Edward Snow­den, a leader of Germany’s oppo­si­tion Green party, for­mer cab­i­net min­is­ter Jür­gen Trit­tin, said Monday.

    “The Amer­i­cans are act­ing just like they accuse the Chi­nese of act­ing,” Trit­tin, co-chief of the Greens’ par­lia­men­tary group, told ARD pub­lic tele­vi­sion, refer­ring to US accu­sa­tions that Bei­jing spon­sors state espi­onage of US interests.

    He said Snow­den, the for­mer National Secu­rity Agency (NSA) con­trac­tor behind a series of dam­ag­ing alle­ga­tions about US spy­ing, had “done Europe a service.”

    Snow­den is holed up in a Moscow air­port tran­sit zone after the United States issued a war­rant for his arrest and revoked his passport.

    Trit­tin, a for­mer envi­ron­ment min­is­ter, said it was “embar­rass­ing” for west­ern democ­ra­cies that “such a per­son, who served the cause of democ­racy, who uncov­ered a major vio­la­tion of fun­da­men­tal rights, has to hun­ker down with despots who are at war with fun­da­men­tal rights.”

    “I am of the opin­ion that such a per­son should be pro­tected,” he said, when asked whether Snow­den should be granted asylum.

    After the EU spy­ing report in Ger­man weekly mag­a­zine Der Spiegel Berlin
    said the United States must quickly say whether the alle­ga­tions were true.

    The Ger­man oppo­si­tion has leapt on the issue three months before a national elec­tion, demand­ing Chan­cel­lor Angela Merkel take a tough line with Washington.

    Merkel’s spokesman Stef­fen Seib­ert expressed shock Mon­day over the reports of US spy­ing on Euro­pean insti­tu­tions and said it had told Wash­ing­ton that it must restore trust in the wake of the allegations.

    He said he was not aware of any attempt by Snow­den to seek asy­lum in the EU and said any appli­ca­tion would be reviewed on the basis of the Geneva Conventions.

    “They apply to every­one,” Seib­ert said.


    Posted by Swamp | July 2, 2013, 6:48 pm
  2. LOL! Hope­fully this means we can just scrap the US-EU free trade talks entirely:

    France ‘has vast data sur­veil­lance’ — Le Monde report
    4 July 2013 Last updated at 10:11 ET

    France’s for­eign intel­li­gence ser­vice inter­cepts com­puter and tele­phone data on a vast scale, like the con­tro­ver­sial US Prism pro­gramme, accord­ing to the French daily Le Monde.

    The data is stored on a super­com­puter at the head­quar­ters of the DGSE intel­li­gence ser­vice, the paper says.

    The oper­a­tion is “out­side the law, and beyond any proper super­vi­sion”, Le Monde says.

    Other French intel­li­gence agen­cies allegedly access the data secretly.

    It is not clear how­ever whether the DGSE sur­veil­lance goes as far as Prism. So far French offi­cials have not com­mented on Le Monde’s allegations.

    The DGSE allegedly analy­ses the “meta­data” — not the con­tents of e-mails and other com­mu­ni­ca­tions, but the data reveal­ing who is speak­ing to whom, when and where.

    Con­nec­tions inside France and between France and other coun­tries are all mon­i­tored, Le Monde reports.

    The paper alleges the data is being stored on three base­ment floors of the DGSE build­ing in Paris. The secret ser­vice is the French equiv­a­lent of Britain’s MI6.

    The oper­a­tion is designed, say experts, to uncover ter­ror­ist cells. But the scale of it means that “any­one can be spied on, any time”, Le Monde says.

    There is a con­tin­u­ing inter­na­tional furore over rev­e­la­tions that the US has been sys­tem­at­i­cally seiz­ing vast amounts of phone and web data.

    The French gov­ern­ment has sharply crit­i­cised the US spy­ing, which allegedly included eaves­drop­ping on offi­cial EU communications.


    Posted by Pterrafractyl | July 4, 2013, 11:17 pm
  3. @Pterrafractyl–

    Unfor­tu­nately, it looks as though the EU/U.S. Free Trade talks are still on, per today’s Wall Street Jour­nal (7/5/2013.)

    One won­ders of this whole imbroglio will give the Under­ground Reich/Germany some polit­i­cal and psy­cho­log­i­cal lever­age over Obama on this.

    On another, related, matter–The “Le Monde” dis­clo­sures sim­ply con­firm what I’ve been talk­ing about for many years, and revis­ited in con­nec­tion with Snowden’s ride.

    “Several”–to quote the EU Par­lia­ment report–European coun­tries have the same abilities.

    That obvi­ously includes Ger­many, which, as I have pointed out, had the Ham­burg cell under full sur­veil­lance by August of 1998–the same month Osama stopped using his cell phone in favor of couri­ers, the month that Clin­ton launched the cruise mis­sile attacks in hope of get­ting him.

    The head of the Ham­burg police at the time is now head of the BND!

    Germany/EU and their assets, such as the Free Con­gress Foun­da­tion, ramped up their attacks on ECHELON/Menwith Hill at the same time.

    There are VERY good rea­sons why the NSA regards Ger­many as a “third-class part­ner” and why Ger­many is spied on as much as Iran, Saudi Ara­bia, and less than Russia.



    Posted by Dave Emory | July 5, 2013, 3:05 pm
  4. @Dave: Yep!

    July 1, 2013 1:00 pm
    Finan­cial Times
    Europe’s spy­ing busi­nesses thrive amid sur­veil­lance uproar

    By Chris Bryant in Frankfurt

    Europe’s politi­cians are out­raged about alleged US mon­i­tor­ing of EU tele­phone and com­puter com­mu­ni­ca­tions. But when it comes to build­ing and export­ing spy equip­ment, few are as capa­ble as Europe.

    That much was evi­dent last month when the world’s lead­ing sell­ers of elec­tronic sur­veil­lance tech­nol­ogy gath­ered in Prague at the ISS World trade show.

    Police and spy agency offi­cials lis­tened to closed-door pre­sen­ta­tions by a suc­ces­sion of Euro­pean com­pa­nies about their highly sophis­ti­cated inter­net and tele­phone com­mu­ni­ca­tion inter­cep­tion wares.

    Hack­ing Team, a Milan-based maker of eaves­drop­ping soft­ware, demon­strated in Prague its remotely con­trolled spy­ware that can tap encrypted com­mu­ni­ca­tions, Skype calls and instant mes­sen­ger chats. The sys­tem also has audio and video capa­bil­ity, which allows police to spy using the target’s own webcam.

    Munich-based Tro­vi­cor schooled agents on its “cell-based mon­i­tor­ing solu­tion” to han­dle mass record­ings while Gamma Inter­na­tional, a UK-German com­pany, demon­strated its con­tro­ver­sial “Fin­Fisher” spy­ware tool for remotely mon­i­tor­ing mobile phone communications.

    At a time when Euro­pean coun­tries are loudly con­demn­ing the US and UK’s spy­ing activ­i­ties, Europe’s spy tech­nol­ogy exper­tise is a poten­tial source of embarrassment.

    Pri­vacy activists and politi­cians fear that, if left unreg­u­lated, sales of Euro­pean sur­veil­lance tech­nol­ogy could infringe human rights over­seas, as well as dam­ag­ing the cyber secu­rity of peo­ple in Europe.

    Mari­etje Schaake, a Dutch MEP who has cam­paigned for bet­ter export con­trols of sur­veil­lance tech­nol­ogy, says: “We in the EU must ensure we prac­tise what we preach.”

    Almost all coun­tries have rules requir­ing telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions com­pa­nies to build in func­tion­al­ity that enables law enforce­ment to mon­i­tor elec­tronic com­mu­ni­ca­tions, sub­ject to a war­rant. This statu­tory right is known in the busi­ness as “law­ful interception”.

    “There is essen­tially no form of dig­i­tal com­mu­ni­ca­tion that law enforce­ment can­not have access to,” says Malte Pohlmann, chief exec­u­tive of Ulti­maco Safe­ware, another provider of law­ful inter­cep­tion systems.

    The US has by far the biggest national bud­get for sur­veil­lance tech­nol­ogy but it tends to buy large bespoke sur­veil­lance sys­tems from big US con­trac­tors. US tech start-ups often receive NSA/CIA fund­ing and are there­fore dis­cour­aged from sell­ing over­seas, says Jerry Lucas, organ­iser of the Prague trade show.

    This means that more than 50 per cent of the almost $6bn a year mar­ket for off-the-shelf sur­veil­lance equip­ment – the kind favoured by nearly all gov­ern­ments except the US – is con­trolled by west­ern Euro­pean com­pa­nies, accord­ing to Mr Lucas.

    “It’s not help­ful to say that all sur­veil­lance is bad – think about how it can be used to deal with child porn, organ­ised crime or ter­ror­ism,” said a Euro­pean ven­dor who declined to be iden­ti­fied. “I think every soci­ety has the right to defend itself.”

    Law­ful inter­cep­tion becomes con­tro­ver­sial when gov­ern­ments use it as a tool to com­mit crime rather than fight it.

    “In coun­tries with no reg­u­la­tion, inter­cep­tion can be used by gov­ern­ments to secure power by spy­ing on its cit­i­zens, not to pre­vent crime but to con­trol behav­iour,” Frost & Sul­li­van, the con­sul­tancy, noted in a 2011 study.

    When pro­test­ers stormed secu­rity ser­vice head­quar­ters dur­ing the Arab Spring upris­ings, they often found that secret police had pur­chased Euro­pean sur­veil­lance tech­nol­ogy to mon­i­tor pro­test­ers.

    Amesys, a French com­pany for­merly owned by Bull Group sold its Eagle inter­net analy­sis soft­ware to Colonel Gaddafi’s Libya in 2007 and was sued by the Inter­na­tional Fed­er­a­tion for Human Rights (FIDH) for alleged com­plic­ity in tor­ture. The claim is being contested.

    Bull last year divested the unit and explained it signed the Libya con­tract dur­ing a period of Libyan rap­proche­ment with the west. Bull says its busi­ness deal­ings com­plied rig­or­ously with require­ments set out in inter­na­tional, Euro­pean and French con­ven­tions and firmly denies com­plic­ity in torture.

    In spite of these prob­lems Mr Lucas says busi­ness is boom­ing: “The pub­lic rela­tions issues has not hurt the indus­try. It has cre­ated more demand,” he says.


    The Ger­man gov­ern­ment says it is open to an expan­sion of the so-called Wasse­naar Arrange­ment, an inter­na­tional export con­trol regime, to bet­ter con­trol dual-use sur­veil­lance technology.

    The dif­fi­culty, it says, is pre­cisely defin­ing the var­i­ous tech­nolo­gies that should be sub­ject to con­trols, par­tic­u­larly given the speed of tech­ni­cal advances and var­i­ous poten­tial uses of some technologies.

    But apart from Ms Schaake, few Euro­pean politi­cians appear to have recog­nised that the continent’s pro­lific export of sur­veil­lance tech­nol­ogy also poses a direct threat to the continent’s security.

    In fact, it was James Clap­per, US direc­tor of national intel­li­gence, who told the US Sen­ate in March that for­eign gov­ern­ments had begun using sur­veil­lance tech­nolo­gies orig­i­nally mar­keted for “law­ful inter­cep­tion” to tar­get US systems.

    Christo­pher Soghoian, a secu­rity and pri­vacy researcher at the Amer­i­can Civil Lib­er­ties Union, con­cludes: “It seems strange to turn a blind eye to sell­ing hack­ing tech­nol­ogy when Euro­pean gov­ern­ments are at the same time invest­ing in cyber secu­rity defence.

    “The gov­ern­ment claims to be pro­tect­ing civil­ians’ data and domes­tic busi­nesses from for­eign attack. But at the exact same time this indus­try is in direct con­flict with that goal.”

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | July 6, 2013, 2:44 pm
  5. James Bam­ford exposed all this and more with the 1982 pub­li­ca­tion of Puz­zle Palace, as did your buddy John Lof­tus later in Secret War Against the...you know who...Loftus actu­ally cites Bam­ford in Secret War. Hash­tags UKUSA ECHELON

    Posted by Snowjob | July 10, 2013, 10:49 pm

Post a comment