Mass surveillance and control
IBM and the Holocaust - revisted
WikiLeaks Exposing "Mass Surveillance Industry"
The anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks began releasing documents
last week related to what it calls the “mass surveillance industry,” a
little-known but expansive underworld of contractors offering tools for
governments — from brutal dictatorships to more moderate Western states —
to monitor citizens and hunt down dissidents. Furious activists reacted
to the revelations by calling for stricter controls and measures to
hold the firms accountable as “accomplices” to mass murder.
The information released so far covers over 150 companies spanning more
than two dozen nations. The documents highlight the nature and growth
of a multi-billion-dollar industry that, in addition to supplying
espionage assistance to the most murderous regimes on earth, has been
quietly turned against citizens in supposedly “free” countries as well.
“Who here has an iPhone? Who here has a Blackberry? Who here uses
Gmail? Well you are all screwed,” WikiLeaks chief Julian Assange told
a press conference in London announcing the new project. “The reality
is intelligence contractors are selling right now, to countries across
the world, mass surveillance systems for all of those products."
Some of the newly released information details how governments are able
to secretly intercept phone calls and take over victims’ computers.
Cell phone owners, it turns out, can be tracked even when the devices
are not activated. But it gets worse.
“In the last ten years systems for indiscriminate, mass surveillance have become the norm,” WikiLeaks said
in a statement about the revelations posted online. “Intelligence
companies such as VASTech secretly sell equipment to permanently record
the phone calls of entire nations. Others record the location of every
mobile phone in a city, down to 50 meters. Systems to infect every
Facebook user, or smart-phone owner of an entire population group are on
the intelligence market.”
Among the more than 1,000 documents involved are pamphlets, brochures,
and catalogues marketing the surveillance products to government
officials worldwide. Also included in the cache of information are
videos, contracts, and more.
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