DHS Paid Millions of Dollars for Cell Phone Location Data to Track Americans

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has been buying location data of millions of cellphone users from third party players. According to documents released by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on July 18, the DHS is buying this data without any warrants to track movements of civilians.

“The released records shine a light on the millions of taxpayer dollars DHS used to buy access to cell phone location information being aggregated and sold by two shadowy data brokers, Venntel and Babel Street,” the report read.

The documents show that this vast amount of location data of people are being purchased by various DHS agencies, including the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) without any judicial oversight, to track people’s movements and use it for “unreasonable government searches and seizures.” Further The data, purchased by the DHS, allowed law enforcement to identify devices & locations at “places of interest,” and to obtain information about frequent visitors, discover patterns of life and collect other important details, as well as track specific individuals or everyone in a particular area.

The records, running into thousands of pages – 6,168 to be precise — contain more than 336,000 location points across North America that had been obtained from people’s smartphones. 

The documents obtained by ACLU over the past year reveals that the bulk of the data came from two companies – Venntel, a location intelligence company headquartered in Washington, DC, and Babel Street, a Virgina-based AI company.

The documents also reveal in detail that not only were the federal agencies aware of what they were doing but also made efforts to rationalize those actions, or even hide them. For instance, the records claimed that the data was “opt-in” and “voluntarily shared ” by users, and that it is collected with consent of the app user and “permission of the individual.”

“By searching through this massive trove of location information at their whim, government investigators can identify and track specific individuals or everyone in a particular area, learning details of our private activities and associations,” noted the ACLU.

Sources : Sputnik News

Geospatialworld.net

DHS COORDINATED WITH CHINESE DRONE COMPANY TO CREATE THE FIRST TOTALLY SURVEILLED CITY IN AMERICA

Inside San Diego’s metropolitan area, California’s second largest city, home to some 275,000 residents, has made the history books. Their mark on history will be a dark one as they become the first city in America to be completely monitored by spy drones.

On a per capita basis, they’re probably the most or one of the most surveilled cities in the country,” said Brian Hofer, executive director of the Oakland-based privacy advocacy group Secure Justice. “Pretty much the minute you walk outside your front door and move about your daily life, you’re going to be tagged and tracked by some law enforcement agency, even though you’ve likely never been suspected of any wrongdoing.”

Chula Vista’s drone program didn’t come to fruition over night. Instead, the Department of Homeland Security and other government agencies coordinated with with Chinese drone manufacturers and unscrupulous actors in Big Tech and have implemented the program over the course of several years.

In 2020, as fearful citizens begged the government for safety that never came, they willingly accepted this egregious invasion of privacy.

“The(Police) department is considering one strategy to use drone-mounted speakers to communicate and reach vulnerable populations in inaccessible areas of the city, like large urban canyons with homeless encampments,” the Chula Vista Police Department said in a press release when they began to spy on citizens 24/7. “Unsheltered persons are particularly vulnerable to the current pandemic, and their safety and welfare is important to stopping the spread of the disease.”

The company who manufactures the drones had no problem admitting the “Orwellian” nature of such a program. “What we saw in China, and what we’re probably going to see around the world, is using drones with cameras and loudspeakers to fly around to see if people are gathering where they shouldn’t be, and telling them to go home,” Spencer Gore, chief executive of U.S.-based drone company Impossible Aerospace, said. “It seems a little Orwellian, but this could save lives.”

People don’t realize the depths of Chinese espionage and the fact that they use any opportunity,” said Jim Lewis, a researcher at the DC-based, bipartisan Center for Strategic and International Studies. “We face the biggest espionage battle we’ve ever had with China. The way people engage in espionage has changed. It’s moved largely to technology and digital devices.”

As we’ve seen with other Orwellian moves like license plate scanners and surveillance cameras, this drone program will not remain solely in Chula Vista and other states have already begun similar programs.

Via : Blacklisted News

Full Article At : The Free Thought Project

Worldwide Surveillance States: 1 Billion camera’s expected by end of 2021

As 2021 draws to a close,the forward march of global Surveillance states continues on Unabated. In 2019 it was projected that by the end of 2021,there would be over 1 Billion cctv surveillance camera’s operable worldwide. The 2019 estimate is based upon a (then) current number of 770 million cctv camera’s worldwide. The global surveillance industry itself has been estimated at 42 billion dollars, with an exponential increase to 86 billion by 2027.

Developing countries, including India, Brazil and Indonesia, will overtake markets such as the U.K and Japan as the world’s largest markets for security camera. Currently an estimated  54% of those cameras are in China.

China leads the way  in surveillance oriented nations,of the current numbers of cctv cameras distributed around the globe 54% of those are used in China, in order to keep watch over it’s citizens. The Chinese government has taken full advantage of the growing surveillance industry,by employing not only cctv surveillance, but also with  the employment of Drones, Data collection ,Facial recognition software and Advanced AI surveillance algorithms. (Which yes…incredibly they have named Skynet)

Commercially, China also is home to the world’s largest surveillance camera manufacturer’s,Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Co. Ltd. & Dahua Technology Co account for 38% of total installations globally. Chinese Tech giant Huawei has it’s hand’s in the Surveillance pot as well,highlighting the growing global trend of  cooperation  between (outright & not so outright) Authoritarian governments and  Corporations (I.E. Corporatism).

The U.S. comes in behind China at a close second with an accounted 18 % of all installed surveillance camera’s worldwide. Projections have put the number of Surveillance camera’s in the U.S. at 70 million,with an increase to 85 million by the end of 2021. For a per capita breakdown it’s estimated that there was one installed camera for every 4.6 people in the U.S. ,while there is one installed CCTV camera per 4.1 people in China. While the United States Surveillance framework is not as (outrightly)ubiquitous as China’s, The US has one of the longest running Mass surveillance networks in the world.

Additionally a recent Stanford University study has shown the growing prevalence of surveillance devices used worldwide in large cities. Globally surveillance via not only CCTV cameras,is growing. But Surveillance is also performed on the smaller commercial scale with products such as Doorbell camera’s, (Google Nest & Amazon Ring) Video Web cameras, Smartphones & Smart Assistant’s.

As if the current situation weren’t chilling enough, the next generations of Surveillance are already in development and deployment. While there once was a fear of Big Brother and a metaphorical eye in the sky type surveillance in the past, We are currently being faced with surveillance on the micro and nano scale as well,via Smart sensors,Nanotech Smart Dust, and the Growing development of 5G  Smart Cities.

While theses Surveillance systems are designed to improve our Security and to enhance our lives in certain way’s. The greater danger behind the Global surveillance network(s) lies in  the loss of our privacy,anonymity, and freedom of movement. Which seems to be shrinking day by day and eroded away by  the actions of global governments , corporations ,and Think tanks  who act (mostly only in name) on behalf of providing us with “Safety “and “Security”.  Ultimately the reduction and regulation of such systems lies in our own hands and minds. We must be as vigilant as the Surveillance framework itself in protecting our selve’s and our Freedoms.

Panama Papers: Govt Spy Agencies, C.I.A. also Hide their Activities

panamapapercia

Intelligence agencies from several countries, including CIA intermediaries, have abundantly used the services of Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca to “conceal” their activities, German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung (SZ) says, citing leaked documents.

Both “secret agents and their informants have used the company’s services,”wrote the newspaper, which earlier this month published online materials based on 11.5 million documents from the Panamanian law firm. It has been called the largest leak on corruption in journalistic history. “Agents have set up shell companies to conceal their activities,” the Munich-based newspaper reported, adding that there are CIA mediators among them.

Mossack Fonseca’s clients also included some of those involved in the so-called Iran-Contra affair, in which several Reagan administration officials secretly facilitated arms sales to Iran in the 1980s in order to secure the release of US hostages and fund Nicaragua’s Contra rebels.
Mossack Fonseca’s clients also included some of those involved in the so-called Iran-Contra affair, in which several Reagan administration officials secretly facilitated arms sales to Iran in the 1980s in order to secure the release of US hostages and fund Nicaragua’s Contra rebels.

The Panama leak claims to expose the offshore holdings of 12 current and former world leaders and provides data on the financial activities of 128 other politicians and public officials from different countries.
Last week WikiLeaks tweeted that the US government and American hedge-fund billionaire George Soros allegedly funded the Papers to attack Putin. According to the international whistleblowing organization, the US government’s funding of such an attack appeared to be a serious blow to its integrity.

One former CIA officer told RT that the fact that the Western media has been unanimously using the Russian leader as the “face” of the Panama Papers leak can be explained by one simple look at the organizations behind these news outlets.

Via: The Free Thought Project

China wants to make Minority Report A Reality

chinag-cyber

(Insert U.S. in the place of China while reading this article, and you wont be far off from how this technology/ Data gathering is being used here against the public as well)

China has a new strategy in fighting crime, ripped from science fiction and hastily pasted at the top of the list of paranoia-inducing concepts. It’s called pre-crime. It goes further than sting operations, counterterrorism, or any other government action to preempt criminal activity ever before.

Like the 2002 film Minority Report, China wants to fight crimes before they happen. They want to know they’ll happen before they’re planned—before the criminal even knows he’s going to be part of them. The Chinese Communist Party “has directed one of the country’s largest state-run defense contractors, China Electronics Technology Group, to develop software to collate data on jobs, hobbies, consumption habits, and other behavior of ordinary citizens to predict terrorist acts before they occur.”

The Chinese government wants to know about everything: every text a person sends, every extra stop they make on the way home. It’s designed for dissidents, but it means that they’ll know every time a smoker buys a pack of cigarettes, how much gas a car owner uses, what time the new mom goes to bed, and what’s in the bachelor’s refrigerator.

Science fiction aside, pre-crime is already somewhat of a reality; data gathering is part of intelligence communities’ and police surveillance efforts and has been for years. A lot of that surveillance has helped nab those responsible for things like child pornography. But whereas it’s been largely surgical here in the U.S., China wants total coverage, which makes crime prevention look a lot different.

Crime prevention is a double-edged sword when it comes to individual rights: The logic that promotes deterrents (like better locks, larger police forces) doesn’t target individual criminals, but rather focuses on protecting people and property from any criminals that might do harm. And again, this sort of thing isn’t going to be used to stop break-ins and muggings, but rather anti-government and anti-stability crimes. This activity isn’t getting a lot of pushback from civil liberties groups, and part of that could be because a lot of people aren’t convinced the government doesn’t already have all of this information.

Original Story: The Daily Beast

CIA’s ‘Eyewash’ Program . Using National Security to Deceive their own

‘Playing with fire’- CIA intentionally misled employees with ‘eyewash’ practice

The CIA practice known as the ‘eyewash’ has just been uncovered. ‘Eyewashing’ involves sending accurate information only to a very small number of people, and disinformation to all other employees. Senior CIA officials have for years intentionally deceived parts of the agency workforce by transmitting internal memos that contain false information about operations and sources overseas, according to current and former U.S. officials who said the practice is known by the term “eyewash.”

An anonymous ex-CIA officer explains:

“The classic use of an eyewash is if you have a garden-variety source and all of a sudden he gains access to truly sensitive information,“
“What you might do is have a false communication saying the guy got hit by a bus and died. The large number of people aware of this source suddenly think he is dead. But the continuing reporting on that source and from that source gets put into a very closed compartment that few would know about.”

Agency veterans described the tactic as an infrequent but important security measure, a means of protecting vital secrets by inserting fake communications into routine cable traffic while using separate channels to convey accurate information to cleared recipients.Senate investigators uncovered apparent cases of eyewashing as part of a multi-year probe of the CIA’s interrogation program, according to officials who said that the Senate Intelligence Committee found glaring inconsistencies in CIA communications about classified operations, including drone strikes.

The CIA’s mission regularly involves carrying out operations that are designed to deceive foreign governments and other adversaries. But officials said that eyewashing is fundamentally different in that it is aimed at an internal audience — sowing misinformation among the agency’s rank and file.

“The people in the outer levels who didn’t have insider access were being lied to,” said a U.S. official familiar with the report. “They were being intentionally deceived.”

Interestingly, it is often said by skeptics that any part of the government could never be involved in a monumental conspiracy because too many people would have to know about it, and someone would talk.What now needs to be examined is the extent to which this practice still takes places today and who exactly receives the accurate information. Is the true information ever sent to elected officials, or always withheld by this shadow government operating essentially on its own?

Original Story Here

Additional input from 21st Century Wire

Apple and Biometrics: Iphone 5S is Big Brother’s Ideal Surveillance Tool

biometricprintID

The wireless age has grown leaps and bounds since the turn of the new millennium. From big square cellphones, to flip phones, to the new touch screen phones that can access the Internet wherever service is available. However, communications just went ‘Back to the Future’; 1984 to be exact, and was secretly given over to Big Brother.

Apple’s new iPhone 5s will come in many(pretty,distracting) colors, and with a brand new feature; Touch ID. Touch ID uses biometrics technology so users can scan their fingerprints to better lock their phones. The latest series of Apple’s iPhone will not only continue to cultivate numerous apps that track your location through GPS and transmit data directly back to corporations and government, but contain a fingerprint sensor that stores your fingerprint in order to purchase apps and unlock the phone for use. For most, this seemingly harmless feature is just that; harmless. But for privacy advocates, and those who understand the direction we are heading in, our biggest fears were realized.

And that’s really just the beginning. As millions will most likely continue through the Apple food chain and purchase this phone, the NSA and bloated federal government at large will be beyond ecstatic. Because after all, it’s a real dream come true for the Big Daddy government spy state.

No longer will you actually need to be arrested to gather your fingerprints — we’re talking about millions nationwide willingly submitting their biometrics to a database that most certainly is accessible by Apple and big government.

Of course Apple claims that the fingerprint scans will be ‘local’ on your hardware, but of course the NSA and FBI would not let such a precious database go to waste. And we already know that corporations are making big bucks spying on the data of consumers.

Biometric-security-Smartphone-946x1024

In the digital age, wireless technology, and biometrics are increasingly becoming one. It should be no surprise that Apple was the first to get their hands on the biometrics technology and incorporate it into its new phone. Your phone is now a wireless world in and of itself, where Big Brother has his hands on the pulse. Cell phones can scan Q codes, swipe credit cards, and now read your own, unique fingerprints. This is building to the new age: the age of a cashless society.

When everything from books, to bank transactions are carried out over the Internet, this enables governments to censor, delete, manage, and monitor an individual’s trends. People should wake up to the fact that although the technology has a potential for being great, the current political and governmental system, mixed with the path we are on, is a powder keg of nefarious snooping, spying, information databasing, and outright theft.

As we inch towards a world in which our electronics are based around biometrics, it becomes an eery reality that our Big Daddy, Big Brother system is continually holding our hands as we walk right into the current spy system that our overlords continue to assert does not exist.

Read More: Activist Post

Read More: Zen Haven

Flashback: Before PRISM there was ECHELON

EchelonSystem

Via Michael Rivero/ What Really Happened

Rumors have abounded for several years of a massive system designed to intercept virtually all email and fax traffic in the world and subject it to automated analysis, despite laws in many nations (including this one) barring such activity. The laws were circumvented by a mutual pact among five nations. It’s illegal for the United States to spy on it’s citizens. Likewise the same for Great Britain. But under the terms of the UKUSA agreement, Britain spies on Americans and America spies on British citizens and the two groups trade data.

The system is called ECHELON, and had been rumored to be in development since 1947, the result of the UKUSA treaty signed by the governments of the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. The purpose of the UKUSA agreement was to create a single vast global intelligence organization sharing common goals and a common agenda, spying on the world and sharing the data.

What is ECHELON used for?

In the days of the cold war, ECHELON’s primary purpose was to keep an eye on the U.S.S.R. In the wake of the fall of the U.S.S.R. ECHELON justifies it’s continued multi-billion dollar expense with the claim that it is being used to fight “terrorism”, the catch-all phrase used to justify any and all abuses of civil rights.

The cover blows off!

Even close allies do not like it when they are being spied on. Especially if the objective is not law enforcement but corporate shenanigans to make rich politicians just that much richer. So, the Civil Liberties Committee of the European Parliament looked into ECHELON, and officially confirmed it’s existence and purpose.

London Telegraph.
Tuesday 16 December 1997
Spies like US

A European Commission report warns that the United States has developed
an extensive network spying on European citizens and we should all be
worried. Simon Davies reports

Cooking up a charter for snooping

A GLOBAL electronic spy network that can eavesdrop on every telephone,
email and telex communication around the world will be officially
acknowledged for the first time in a European Commission report to be
delivered this week.

The report – Assessing the Technologies of Political Control – was
commissioned last year by the Civil Liberties Committee of the European
Parliament. It contains details of a network of American-controlled
intelligence stations on British soil and around the world, that
“routinely and indiscriminately” monitor countless phone, fax and email
messages. The report confirms for the first time the existence of the secretive
ECHELON system.

“The ECHELON system forms part of the UKUSA system (Cooking up a
charter for snooping) but unlike many of the electronic spy systems
developed during the Cold War, ECHELON is designed primarily for
non-military targets: governments, organizations and businesses in
virtually every country.

listeningpost
(Echelon interception station, Menwith Hill UK)

Full Article Here

FBI Proposal Would Require Websites And Devices To Be Wiretap-Ready

FBI-Wiretapping

The FBI is asking Internet companies not to oppose a controversial proposal that would require firms, including Microsoft, Facebook, Yahoo, and Google, to build in backdoors for government surveillance.

In meetings with industry representatives, the White House, and U.S. senators, senior FBI officials argue the dramatic shift in communication from the telephone system to the Internet has made it far more difficult for agents to wiretap Americans suspected of illegal activities.(or to wiretap suspect citizens without a warrant, when ordered by the president)

The FBI general counsel’s office has drafted a proposed law requiring that social-networking Web sites and providers of VoIP, instant messaging, and Web e-mail alter their code to ensure their products are wiretap-friendly.

The FBI’s proposal would amend a 1994 law, called the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act, or CALEA, that currently applies only to telecommunications providers, not Web companies.

Via Disinfo

Cnet Article Here

Google Will Help Police to Track “Extremist Websites” Through its Search Results

google-is-watchingfeds

*Google continues their track record of working with agencies that spy on citizens, and furthering the cause of destroying privacy

Google Chairman Eric Schmidt said that they will help the police trace “extremist websites” and that legal information on Google’s search engine will be indexed to help track “terrorism- promoting websites.”

Google’s indexing of extremist websites helps police track their activity and will continue, the company’s chief told an audience. Schmidt further said that the police can detect extremists through their internet activity as they leave a digital trail and their online presence can sometimes help in tracking them and their pre-planned terrorist activities.

Asked if Google is now more powerful than many countries and whether it in effect operates just like one, Schmidt said it was not an aim of the company. “We’re not becoming a state. We don’t want to be because states have a lot of complicated problems.

(good way to dodge the question..Of course they won’t admit to being more powerful than most countries, beside’s when you’re building the framework for an international Fascist control grid, you won’t need countries anyway.)

Via IntelliHub