On The Wire

Social Media and the New Cyberwar

The Russian invasion of Ukraine is an opportunity for social media giants to rehabilitate their reputations tarnished by invasive surveillance practices, the relentless harvesting of personal data and a collective indifference to social responsibility. Now seizing the chance to gain a higher ground they are pushing back against the Russian ...
Continue Reading
/

Crypto Couple and the Bitcoin Controversy

The seizure of more than $3.6 billion in bitcoin allegedly stolen from Hong Kong-based Bitfinex has led to the arrest of a New York couple charged with conspiracy to launder the cryptocurrency fortune. The Bitfinex breach in 2016 was among a flood of hacks into currency exchanges that resulted in ...
Continue Reading
/

The Taking of Ryanair Flight 4978

A Ryanair flight departed from Athens for Vilnius with a target of the authoritarian Belarus government on board. A bogus bomb plot communicated by email led to an unscheduled landing in Minsk. Dissident journalist Roman Protasevich and his Russian girlfriend, Sofia Sapega, were arrested and charged with organizing mass unrest ...
Continue Reading
/

Europol Ordered to Purge Vast Trove of Personal Data

The European Data Protection Supervisor has been on the heels of Europol over the data retention practices of the law enforcement agency for a few years. The chase came to an end earlier this month when Europol was ordered to delete data concerning individuals with no established link to criminal ...
Continue Reading
/

From Pegasus to Predator and Beyond

Spyware traffickers insist their surveillance tools are only sold to customers for the investigation of serious crimes and acts of terrorism. But developments over the past year put the lie to the claim. The diverse and expanding list of victims runs a wide gamut suggesting the real sales criteria is ...
Continue Reading
/

Sanctioning Spyware Mercenaries

For over two years the stories have persisted. A nagging suspicion led to dogged investigation and then a revelatory expose hit the internet. The name of an infamous spyware trafficker and the tech savvy sleuths on its trail will be forever linked in the history of modern electronic surveillance. NSO ...
Continue Reading
/

Apple Sues Spyware Hawker NSO Group

The technology company NSO Group has been called everything from a cybersurveillance weapons dealer to an amoral 21st century mercenary. And the labels are sticking. Human rights experts at the United Nations have called for a global moratorium on the sale and transfer of surveillance technology until regulations are in ...
Continue Reading
/

Journalism Is Not a Crime

An extrajudicial execution is the killing of a person by a government authority without due process of law. Extrajudicial killings often target journalists, dissidents and political figures. Journalists today are frequently the object of assassination, mass arrests and personal harassment. In the past journalists were not overly concerned for their ...
Continue Reading
/

Hunters on the Dark Net

The United States Department of Justice has announced the results of Operation Dark HunTor described as a coordinated investigation on three continents to disrupt opioid trafficking on the dark net. The operation, conducted across the United States, Europe and Australia resulted from the partnership between the U.S. Joint Criminal Opioid ...
Continue Reading
/

What Is a Keyword Search Warrant?

Law enforcement agencies in the United States have been obtaining keyword search warrants requiring Google, Microsoft and Yahoo to produce personally identifiable information about users who searched for a particular term or 'keyword' during a specific period of time. How often the courts have approved of keyword warrants is a ...
Continue Reading
/