Cyber Mass Surveillance & Death of Civil Liberty

Privacy Matters

Privacy evasion is the most humiliation & sensitive matter in this technology era. Cyber criminals and black intent hackers are always in the hunt for low hanging fruits (sensitive and private data). PCI (Personnel credit card information), PII (Personal Identified Information), PHI (Personal Health Information), SPI (Sensitive Private Information), SBI (Sensitive Business Information) are prime source for information harvesting. Most of these information are protected by the cyber law and securely managed around the globe by various entities, however the data breach and stealing in rise. Hackers are smarter than innovators, security breach and privacy invasion is a leapfrogging game between inventors and hackers.

Due to technology proliferation and IoT took off, risks are everywhere. Identity management crisis, software vendors, hardware vendors and service providers’ outdated products and services are the most troublesome vulnerabilities zones. One infection could led to outbreak in mass scale that could bring catastrophe to cyber world in a form a holocaust. There is no perfect right or wrong to a security or technology products and services so technology extractor from the trends is on high demand to full fill businesses’ cyber security requirements, management and incident handling.

Cyber Technology Pollution

There is no best cyber security solutions as vulnerabilities and risks never ending. Due diligent and act due care is the most near to the best solutions. Investing in new technology is not the only solution, managing and operating is a must to get protected from advanced persistence threats. Magnitude and dimension of cyber breach are ballooning in parallel to the technologies innovations. Mechanical and electrical integration with digital technology has scaled up internet dimension to the new level. Today’s invention or innovation may outdated by tomorrow. Long term strategic solutions are no longer reliable instead constant evolutionary strategic solutions are in high demand.

Since cyber risks and criminals activities are exploding globally and hard to search and investigate, if not controlled digital technologies and manage cyber users, crime will flourished. Global governments and legal entities are progressively spying and monitoring each of their citizens and data have been sharing to control criminals in global context. Mass surveillance is activated to monitor each citizens that involves systematic breach of privacy. Mass surveillance programs collects, identify, analyze and correlates individuals personal information and behaviors without their knowledge. Government can capture and collects every aspects of human life, social activities and private activities. It is a gross act but no choice to control cybercrimes to keep digital community safe and sound.

Mass surveillance is not a new methodology as it has been existed since long. For an instance phone directories, censuses registering, driver licensing and registration, passports and IDs have been in used and collectively consulted in the needs of government entities.

Mass Surveillance Technology

MST come in many forms, their functions are to tap all data and voice traffic at the nation’s telecommunication exchange, collect structurally, identify data types and sort them in chronological order, conduct analysis on suspected data and correlate with various other sources to report the requested information that relates to an individual.

Currently RigoTechnology is being engaged in a Mass Surveillance Project and excited to share news with our customers, vendors and subscribers, from high level prospective as depicted in the diagram below, it shows end-to-end communication between the users across two nations and how the information is intercepted by both governments. Users’ would not know as the communication is not disrupted but spying is progressed at the background.

Mass Surveillance Projects across the Global Governments

USA Mass Surveillance: – NSA mass surveillance program is intense within US and has reach across the globe. Any US citizens are monitored wherever they go. Also in recent law FBI, CIA or DHS personnel are allowed to search on any IoT devices including Facebook and twitter accounts must be provided upon their request for search without any warrant. 1974 privacy act, 1986 (ECPA) Electronic Communication Privacy Act have been paralyzed. To contain terrorism acts and suspected search conduct, searching and seizing computer equipment and obtaining electronic evidence in a criminal investigation without a search warrant has sanctioned in 2009 by DoJ (Department of Justice).

China Mass Surveillance: – Golden Shield Project (Great Firewall of China) is a censorship and surveillance project in operation by the Ministry of Public Security (MPS). IP & DNS blocking, VPN and encryption technologies including Facebook, twitter, google, web emails are being subject of investigation that are in and out to the country. China Telecom is a dedicated partner for the government in this project. Even searching from US on Chinese websites for research purpose have experienced http errors and most of the sites are forbidden.

Germany Mass Surveillance: – BND (Germany Security Intelligence) is competing with NSA on mass surveillance within and across the globe. BND, BfV (local cyber police equivalent to FBI) & MAD (Federal Military Intelligence) have been working collaborate on surveillance project to counter cyber criminals, terrorism, Muslim militant and online shopping fraud and information espionage to save citizens, businesses and own government personnel. Now BND has explicit spy authority in foreign nationals.

UK Mass Surveillance: – UK caused the death of civil liberty on digital arena and overruled privacy laws with an extreme deployment by the project called dub the snooper charter allows NCA and SIS (MI5/MI6) far reach out listening to eyes, and ears or their citizens.

There are other surveillances project in active such as 5 eyes, Prism and trend is growing globally as the respective nations are worried about social activists, civil unrest, crimes and cyber pollution is on rise.

Conclusively, there are national and sensitive security issues to be maintained by the global governments to protect its civilians from terrorism or any kind of digital crime and social defaming or unrest. To overcome these challenges governments must act ferociously beyond the civil liberty, privacy and existing law and regulations. However, we civilians may feel greater loss of humanity and destruction of privacy and have to deal with it to cooperate with the respective governments. Always “greatest good for the greatest number of people” gets priority.

Bip Khanal

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