Greenwald's partner detained for carrying stolen classified docs
1:31 pm EDT, Aug 19, 2013
Looks like there's more to this story. Still not sure how this equates to "terrorism" though.
First, as we learned from The Guardian itself, Miranda was not just traveling or on vacation -- he was specifically visiting Laura Poitras, a U.S. film-maker based in Berlin who had also received many of the stolen documents from Snowden:
While in Berlin, Miranda had visited Laura Poitras, the US film-maker who has also been working on the Snowden files with Greenwald and the Guardian.
And then, after finding out that Poitras was working with the same stolen, classified materials as Greenwald, we subsequently learned from the New York Times that Poitras is in the practice of using others to transport and hold her sensitive materials for her:
After being detained repeatedly, Poitras began taking steps to protect her data, asking a traveling companion to carry her laptop, leaving her notebooks overseas with friends or in safe deposit boxes. She would wipe her computers and cellphones clean so that there would be nothing for the authorities to see. Or she encrypted her data, so that law enforcement could not read any files they might get hold of. These security preparations could take a day or more before her travels.
So, already the story sounds much different than Greenwald's initial claims. And now we learn, again from the NYT, as now confirmed by Greennwald himself, that Greenwald and Poitras were, in fact, using Miranda as a mule to transport the stolen classified documents:
Mr. Miranda was in Berlin to deliver documents related to Mr. Greenwald’s investigation into government surveillance to Ms. Poitras, Mr. Greenwald said. Ms. Poitras, in turn, gave Mr. Miranda different documents to pass to Mr. Greenwald. Those documents, which were stored on encrypted thumb drives, were confiscated by airport security, Mr. Greenwald said. All of the documents came from the trove of materials provided to the two journalists by Mr. Snowden.
At 6:30 am this morning my time - 5:30 am on the East Coast of the US - I received a telephone call from someone who identified himself as a "security official at Heathrow airport." He told me that my partner, David Miranda, had been "detained" at the London airport "under Schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act of 2000."
David had spent the last week in Berlin, where he stayed with Laura Poitras, the US filmmaker who has worked with me extensively on the NSA stories. A Brazilian citizen, he was returning to our home in Rio de Janeiro this morning on British Airways, flying first to London and then on to Rio. When he arrived in London this morning, he was detained.
The stated purpose of this law, as the name suggests, is to question people about terrorism. The detention power, claims the UK government, is used "to determine whether that person is or has been involved in the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism."
But they obviously had zero suspicion that David was associated with a terrorist organization or involved in any terrorist plot. Instead, they spent their time interrogating him about the NSA reporting which Laura Poitras, the Guardian and I are doing, as well the content of the electronic products he was carrying. They completely abused their own terrorism law for reasons having nothing whatsoever to do with terrorism: a potent reminder of how often governments lie when they claim that they need powers to stop "the terrorists", and how dangerous it is to vest unchecked power with political officials in its name.
This is obviously a rather profound escalation of their attacks on the news-gathering process and journalism. It's bad enough to prosecute and imprison sources. It's worse still to imprison journalists who report the truth. But to start detaining the family members and loved ones of journalists is simply despotic.
I'm having something similar to Decius' inexplicable Twitter lockout experience a while back. Signed up for LinkedIn a couple of days ago. I've been diligently building out my network like they encourage you to do. I signed in this morning and I got this:
Account Restricted | LinkedIn
Your LinkedIn account has been temporarily restricted
Contact our customer service team to get this resolved as soon as possible.
Clicking the link to the "customer service team" takes you to a generic form that asks for your name and email address. It auto-populates the subject line with "Account High Restricted" and the form says "Your Question"
When you submit you get:
Your question has been submitted to LinkedIn
The ticket reference number for your question is: #
You've successfully submitted your question, and we'll send you a confirmation email soon.
Go to your Support History page to check out your ticket.
What's really funny is when you click the link for "Support History" it loops you back to "Your LinkedIn account has been temporarily restricted.
I love mediated online social mechanisms with arbitrary kill switches!
Training the Next Generation: Predator Toy Drone at Amazon
1:19 pm EST, Jan 6, 2013
My son is very interested in joining the Imperial forces when he grows up. He says he's not sure if he wants to help police the homeland or if he wants to invade foreign countries. So I thought a new Predator drone toy would be a nice gift for him. These drones are used both domestically and internationally, to spy on people and assassinate them at the Emperor's discretion. He just loves flying his drone around our house, dropping Hellfire missiles on Scruffy, our dog. He kept saying that Scruffy was a terror suspect and needed to be taken out. I asked him if Scruffy should get a trial first, and he quoted Lindsay Graham, Imperial Senator: "Shut up Scruffy, you don't get a trial!" I was so proud. I think I'll buy him some video games that promote martial law for Christmas.
I bought this for my son and he spent countless, blissful hours simulating massacres of weddings, funerals, and other family gatherings of brown skinned foreigners! He even realized that if he circled the drone back around on the first responders, his effective kill rate soared! Neat-o!
This is the best toy ever. Finally, I can pretend that I'm a winner of the Nobel Peace Prize! It's like I'm sitting right there in the White House with my very own kill list!
Bookmarked for future reference. I had been thinking about a way to "load balance" traffic across multiple Snort instances and thought about applying something like Cisco's etherchannel load-balance srt-dst-ip hashing algorithm.
Lo and behold, I found this great BPF kludge!
In our example, there will be four nodes monitoring traffic, so the BPF looks like this for the first node: (ip[14:2]+ip[18:2]) - (4*((ip[14:2]+ip[18:2])/4)) == 0 So, in /etc/bro/local.bro, we have this: redef cmd_line_bpf_filter="(ip[14:2]+ip[18:2]) - (4*((ip[14:2]+ip[18:2])/4)) == 0"; On the second node, we would have this: redef cmd_line_bpf_filter="(ip[14:2]+ip[18:2]) - (4*((ip[14:2]+ip[18:2])/4)) == 1"; Third: redef cmd_line_bpf_filter="(ip[14:2]+ip[18:2]) - (4*((ip[14:2]+ip[18:2])/4)) == 2"; And fourth: redef cmd_line_bpf_filter="(ip[14:2]+ip[18:2]) - (4*((ip[14:2]+ip[18:2])/4)) == 3";
Special note: If you are monitoring a link that is still vlan tagged (like from an RSPAN), then you will need to stick vlan && in front of each of the BPF's.
Our argument, in brief, is that digital technologies have been able to do routine work for a while now. This allows them to substitute for less-skilled and -educated workers, and puts a lot of downward pressure on the median wage. As computers and robots get more and more powerful while simultaneously getting cheaper and more widespread this phenomenon spreads, to the point where economically rational employers prefer buying more technology over hiring more workers. In other words, they prefer capital over labor. This preference affects both wages and job volumes. And the situation will only accelerate as robots and computers learn to do more and more, and to take over jobs that we currently think of not as ‘routine,’ but as requiring a lot of skill and/or education.
computers are now doing many things that used to be the domain of people only. The pace and scale of this encroachment into human skills is relatively recent and has profound economic implications. Perhaps the most important of these is that while digital progress grows the overall economic pie, it can do so while leaving some people, or even a lot of them, worse off.
Cops to Congress: We need logs of Americans' text messages
Topic: Civil Liberties
7:41 am EST, Dec 4, 2012
AT&T, Verizon Wireless, Sprint, and other wireless providers would be required to record and store information about Americans' private text messages for at least two years, according to a proposal that police have submitted to the U.S. Congress.
CNET has learned a constellation of law enforcement groups has asked the U.S. Senate to require that wireless companies retain that information, warning that the lack of a current federal requirement "can hinder law enforcement investigations."
They want an SMS retention requirement to be "considered" during congressional discussions over updating a 1986 privacy law for the cloud computing era -- a move that could complicate debate over the measure and erode support for it among civil libertarians.
As the popularity of text messages has exploded in recent years, so has their use in criminal investigations and civil lawsuits. They have been introduced as evidence in armed robbery, cocaine distribution, and wire fraud prosecutions. In one 2009 case in Michigan, wireless provider SkyTel turned over the contents of 626,638 SMS messages, a figure described by a federal judge as "staggering."
Chuck DeWitt, a spokesman for the Major Cities Chiefs Police Association, which represents the 63 largest U.S. police forces including New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, and Chicago, said "all such records should be retained for two years." Some providers, like Verizon, retain the contents of SMS messages for a brief period of time, while others like T-Mobile do not store them at all.
This is just laziness on LEA's part. You want text messages for someone? Get a warrant and start tapping. This is as stupid as "ISP's have to keep 100% of all logs for years in the event that we need 0.01% of the logs, well, maybe at some point... or not, and who cares what it costs them!"