Wikileaks Vault7 Release Reveals CIA Contamination Of Apple Devices

WikiLeaks latest from the Vault 7 documents which related to the CIA’s electronic espionage programs to monitor the electronic communications of everybody in the free world has been dubbed ‘Dark Matter,’ and reveals the specially developed techniques to enable hacking of Apple products. In a statement on ‘Dark Matter,’ WikiLeaks said Thursday’s release includes details of the ‘Sonic Screwdriver’ project, described by the CIA as a “mechanism for executing code on peripheral devices while a Mac laptop or desktop is booting.” (Sonic screwdriver is named after a fictional high tech tool featured in the Doctor Who science fiction TV series.) The spy software was developed by the CIA Embedded development branch.

What makes Sonic Screwdriver far more sinister than other hacking tools used by security agencies is that it is embedded in the device’s firmware which means it is part of the operating system, thus it cannot be removed even by highly skilled users, it will simply reinstall itself every time the operating system is rebooted.

More sinister still, while mainstream commentators are saying that access to the firmware means the CIA have ‘assets’ in the Apple supply chain or are able to intercept shipments of devices and tamper with the system before the goods reach retailers, all coyly avoid mentioning the most obvious means of getting CIA spyware into Apple devices is by direct collaboration between Apple and the security services.

Outrageous as this may seem, it is widely known that high tech corporations in the electronic communications business owe much of their phenomenal success to collaboration with US government agencies. The ‘postern gates’ (back doors) installed operating systems and browsers are the best known examples of this.

read more on this at IB Times >>>

 
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How to stop Google tracking your every move

Do you ever get the feeling you are being watched or followed? OK, it could possibly be because you are paranoid but more likely you’ve noticed a few things that are just beyond creepy when you are using the web and particularly Google services.

For an example, has an advertisement for a product or service ever popped up on your screen just after you were talking to someone about it?

When security researcher Mustafa Al-Bassam popped into a McDonald’s for a halal burger last year, he was shocked when a prompt to download the fast food restaurant’s app popped up on his smart phone. Mustafa tweeted at the time:

Yesterday I almost had a heart attack when I entered McDonald’s and I had a notification on my phone asking me to install their app.

Your every move is being watched. Monitored. Analysed. Not just by creepy spooks like the NSA and GCHQ but also by corporate pirates determined to get their grubby mitts on your hard earned. Google, (don’t be evil, that’s our job) are probably the worst culprit and are known to collaborate with National Security agencies to gather data on citizens, not just suspected criminals or political activists but ordinary punters. The aim is to build a profile of you that will make it possible to predict your behaviour.

Around the time Mr Al-Bassam noticed he had a creepy stalker in his cellphone phone, other Google users began to realise that despite having deleted Google Maps, another Google-based app, Google Play, was “almost obsessive” in its need to check user’s whereabouts.

While location services on your smartphone are commonplace in modern society,  Google’s cosy relationship with the US government enables them to circumvent civil rights an privacy laws and accurately follow you, building a picture of where you go and what you do. Google Play passes on your location data to databases and installed apps via an API, whether Maps are installed or not.

For Android users, Google uses this information  in a service called Nearby, “which notifies you of things that can be helpful near you”, according to Google.

Google jovially tells you “The Play Store offers over one million apps — many of which are created to be used in specific locations or situations. The right app at the right moment lets you get more done.”

But one they are in your system, Google makes it particularly difficult to switch these features off.

Here’s how to get out of it.

Deleting or uninstalling the apps are helpful, or you could turn your phone’s location services on and off as you use each app. But this is irritating and time consuming. However News.com Australia have compiled some instructions to help you shake off the stalker in your smart phone. See below:

 

ANDROID

Tapping on ‘Your Timeline’, Google will ask you to turn on your Location history. This allows you to rediscover places you’ve visited in the past. But it also allows Google to create a complex profile of your personality.

Here’s how to stop Google Maps tracking you:

• Select ‘Your Timeline’ in Settings

• Tap the Burger Icon (the three dots on the top right-hand side of the screen) and select ‘Settings’

• Scroll down to Location Settings

• Tap “Location History is on”.

• A pop-up window will appear; tap the checkmark next to “On”. Swiping to the left should turn it off.

• Tap “OK” on the window that appears.

You can also turn location off and delete location history in the same settings. Google will issue a warning that says your services might be affected — but let’s be real, you’ll be fine.

Select ‘Your Timeline’.

Select ‘Your Timeline’.Source:Supplied

Find your location settings by clicking the Burger icon.

Find your location settings by clicking the Burger icon.Source:Supplied

Google will send you this notification if you decide to turn of Location History on Android.

Google will send you this notification if you decide to turn of Location History on Android.Source:Supplied

Swipe left to turn your location services off in Settings.

Swipe left to turn your location services off in Settings.Source:Supplied

APPLE IOS

The ‘Your Timeline’ feature doesn’t exist for Apple users, as they do Android. But there are ways to opt out.

• Make sure you’re signed in and go to your Settings

• Scroll down to Settings

• Tap ‘Location History’ and slide it off

• To erase your history, scroll down the Settings menu to ‘Maps History’.

• There is currently not an option to delete everything at once, but you can tap the ‘X’ next to the locations you want to delete.

• You can also turn off ‘Location Data Collection’ by tapping ‘About, terms and privacy’ under Settings

— There is a sneaky way to allow Google to track your location while only using the App.

Go to Settings > Privacy > Location Services > Google Maps and select ‘While Using the App’.

The Settings menu in Google Maps is where you’ll find location preferences.

The Settings menu in Google Maps is where you’ll find location preferences.Source:Supplied

iPhone users have the option to use location services on Google Maps only while using the app.

iPhone users have the option to use location services on Google Maps only while using the app.Source:Supplied

Google will warn you before you clear any data.

Google will warn you before you clear any data.Source:Supplied

You can also turn off ‘Location Data Collection’ under Settings.

You can also turn off ‘Location Data Collection’ under Settings.Source:Supplied

— youngma@news.com.au

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Erasing David

WARNING – Graphic Content: Journalist David Bond decides to find out how much private companies and the Government know about him by putting himself under surveillance and trying to drop off the radar.

 

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German Government Smartphone Spyware Monitors Citizens’ Calls, Typing AND Sees Through Their Cameras


The shadow government is employing shadow spied Image source: middlemarketcenter.org

The German Interior Ministry has formally revealed that they have created a new “Bundestrojaner” or government trojan horse software that will enable security agencies to track the smartphone activities of anyone that inadvertently downloads it according to German media. We understand Chancellor Merkel’s government has also adopted an “off the shelf” tool from a company which is said to help authoritarian regimes track their citizens.

(Well we have tried to warn you of the direction the German government was travelling in when we started referring to The Chancellor as Hausfrau – Volksfuhrer Merkel, drawing a parallel with comedian Barry Humphrey’s character, “Housewife – Superstar Dame Edna Everidge. Though Dame Edna is not real, Merkel seems to have become similarly deluded.

The Trojan Horse software the German government is using disguises itself as something innocent like a free screen saver or game. Once the user opens the file the malicious code infects the target computer, often allowing a third party access to all kinds of information and enabling them to record keystrokes, browse files and even remotely control the computer.

The Federal Data Protection Commissioner Andrea Vosshoff has said that the testing of the software has been completed and that it will be used to follow the movements and actions of suspected criminals and others.

The government tried to reassure concerned citizens by saying that the software only has the capacity to monitor communications and not have access to sensitive files. Critics of the project, aware that the government has openly discussed the possibility of criminalising opposition to the government’s ‘open doors’ immigration policy and opponents of EU political integration, fear the malware could theoretically gain access to anyone’s computer files, personal sensitive information without the person ever being aware that they had been infected with the malware.

Green Party deputy head Konstantin von Notz said, “We do understand the needs of security officials, but still, in a country under the rule of law, the means don’t justify the end.”

This is not the occasion on which the German government has used a trojan horse program. In 2011 the government created similar malware in secret without the knowledge of the public. A hacker group called “Chaos Computer Club” discovered the plan and leaked details to the press causing a scandal. The lawyer of a person whose computer was infected by the trojan told the German press the government had planted it on his client’s computer as he was going through customs at Munich airport.

FinFisher Gamma-International is the company that has developed the latestsoftware called FinFisher or FinSpy. They are based in the UK and in Germany and specialise in developing spyware for governments and law enforcement agencies.

They have been at the centre of many civil liberties scandals when oppressive regimes have used their software to spy on political opponents and human rights activists. Egypt used the software during the Arab spring to help identify and ‘neutralise’ people critical of the Mubarak regime. Germany, which presents itself as a liberal Social Demoracy now joins countries like Bahrain and Indonesia who are alleged to use the software, according to a report by University of Toronto based Citizen Lab(but as anarchist intellectual Mikhail Bakunin warned Karl Marx in the 1870s, socialist governments will always become more oppressive that the old despotic monarchies).

Re-Branding Dissent – The Quiet Destruction Of Democracy

Many people, all the contributors to this publication among them, fear that democracy is being destroyed. OK, OK, hipsters will say but ‘we’ve never had democracy’, or, ‘it was destroyed long ago’, but left wing deceit aside, I think its worth actually thinking about how, many forms of democratic expression, effective dissent and peaceful self-determination are being outlawed and abolished in a sustained attack on free speech and civil rights.

In an article titled “The Next Crisis” the author argues that The Controllers, The Global Elite, call them what you will, have decided that Democracy is a threat to their wealth and power and have more than likely given some thought to how best to neuter it while appearing to do no such thing. It is expedient to retain the outward appearance of democracy in order to avoid frightening the frail of spirit, but there is a move to eradicate any substance from it, leaving us with an empty but colourful stage show.

The idea of a meritocratic global governance is about a hundred years old now, when first floated it was unworkable but now internet technologies offer government the ability to control information and thus manipulate opinion so that enough people can be persuaded to surrender their individual rights and liberties in return for protection from ‘existential threats’ that in reality, if dealt with properly, pose no greater danger to human life than a smelly fart.

And yet the elites keep pushing the idea that we are threatened by global warming, Islamic extremism, food and water shortages and a host of other problems from which only Big Government can save us. For example

3) professionalized Governance. Democracy can be and must be neutered, and an effective way of doing this is to insist that amateur, elected officials MUST take the advice of professional (read corporate) advisors. Expand current law to enforce this.

If this seems monstrous now, their argument, I suspect, will be that in an increasingly crowded, interconnected and globalised world we can no longer leave critically important decisions in the hands of the uneducated, in-expert and amateur. We must, of course, still be free to choose but must, from now on, be helped to choose ‘wisely’. And how can we choose wisely if we aren’t given wise choices to choose from? Oh, the Orwellian beauty of it! No prizes for guessing who will decide what is and what is not wise.

We cannot any longer allow you to choose unwisely! There is so much at stake and so much you and your representatives simply do not fully understand.

You only need think how much legislation is already written by these ‘advisors’ and how many ‘experts’ are routinely seconded from corporations in order to ‘help’ the government departments regulate those same corporations to appreciate how far towards this we have already come. Two examples of ‘expert advice’ spring readily to mind. Back in May 2014 Citi drafted, word for word, many of the ‘amendments’ to the Frank Dodd financial regulation law. While professional experts from J PM Morgan did the same for the new derivatives trading law which puts the US tax payer back on the hook for any really serious losses. In an essay <br />

<h4>The Next Crisis – Part two – A manifesto for the supremacy of the 1%</h4><br />

the author, award winning documentary film maker David Malone presents a likely manifesto for the subversion of democracy by a bureaucratic dictatorship appointed by political and wealthy oligarchs.

Interesting reading …

 

 

READ MORE ON: [German] … [Germany] … [Technology] … [Surveillance]

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US Congress Passes Bill Allowing Colonization Of Space

The for all the science tits and space wankers to involunarity ejaculate. We have blogged on the looniness of Church Of Scienology evangelists who lobby governments to commit? to spending $£€trillions on colonizing space even though getting beyond our solar system with current technology presents insurmountable obstacles.

Can you imagine the cost of getting a kilo of space dust back from some planet in even a nearby solar system

by Deirdre Fulton, Common Dreams (Reproduced under CC licence):

In a bipartisan bid to encourage commercial exploitation of outer space, the U.S. Senate this week unanimously passed the Space Act of 2015, which grants U.S. citizens or corporations the right to legally claim non-living natural resources—including water and minerals—mined in the final frontier.

The legislation — described by IGN‘s Jenna Pitcher as “a celestial ‘Finders Keepers’ law”—could be a direct affront to an international treaty that bars nations from owning property in space. The bill will now be sent back to the House of Representatives, which is expected to approve the changes, and then on to President Barack Obama for his anticipated signature.

Pitcher continued:

The new Space Act allows ventures to keep and sell any natural resources mined on planets, asteroids and other celestial bodies. Commercial operations could reap trillions of dollars from mining precious metals like platinum, common metallic elements such as iron, and water, the “oil of space.”

The vote was celebrated by the Google-backed “asteroid mining company” Planetary Resources, which lobbied hard for the legislation and says “the market in space is ripe to bloom.”

Planetary Resources president and chief engineer Chris Lewicki added: “Throughout history, governments have spurred growth in new frontiers by instituting sensible legislation. Long ago, The Homestead Act of 1862 advocated for the search for gold and timber, and today, H.R. 2262 fuels a new economy that will open many avenues for the continual growth and prosperity of humanity.”

“This off-planet economy,” he said, “will forever change our lives for the better here on Earth.”

But there could be a snag. Along with Britain, France, and Russia, the U.S. is a signatory to the 1967 Outer Space Treaty, which reads in part: “Outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, is not subject to national appropriation by claim of sovereignty, by means of use or occupation, or by any other means.”

As Wired noted on Thursday, “handing out the right to exploit chunks of space to your citizens sounds very much like a claim of sovereignty, despite the Space Act’s direct statement that ‘the United States does not thereby assert sovereignty or sovereign or exclusive rights or jurisdiction over, or the ownership of, any celestial body’.”

“[O]n the one hand Congress is saying to these companies, ‘Go get these rights and we’’ll defend you,’ and at the same time saying, ‘We’re making no sovereign claim of ownership’,” space lawyer Michael Listner told the Guardian.

“They’re trying to dance around the issue,” he said of U.S. lawmakers. “I tend to think it doesn’t create any rights because it conflicts with international law. The bottom line is before you can give somebody the right to harvest a resource you have to have ownership.”

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