Interesting Links: May 21, 2015

Here are links to some interesting news articles that I came across today. They are about how pretty much anything anything goes under the guise of “protecting” nation states. While such behaviors by self appointed protectors of nation states is not new- certain structural characteristics of the internet has greatly increased the frequency of uncontrolled exposures of such “official” behavior.

Link 1: The Case Against Matt DeHart

DeHart’s apparently psychotic ramblings in that ER weren’t delusional. He was being interrogated by the FBI, and those harrowing interrogations continued for almost a week. He wasn’t allowed to make a phone call until August 12, six days after the FBI nabbed him. “He was basically babbling on the phone,” his father, Paul, testified later in court. “It was apparent to me that he had been drugged in some way or another.”

In other words, the feds say DeHart got a minor to shoot a video of himself masturbating. The indictment doesn’t say why DeHart did this, nor does it allege he ever possessed said video. The original indictment is based on the affidavit of a police detective who interviewed the boy.

Link 2: The NSA Plan TO Find Bin L by Hiding Tracking Devices in Medical Supplies

The National Security Agency concocted a plan to find Osama bin Laden by hiding tracking devices in medical supplies, in an attempt to cross what officials called the “non-electronic moat” surrounding the reportedly ailing terrorist leader. The scheme is laid out in a top-secret NSA presentation dated June 2010 and titled “Medical Pattern of Life: Targeting High Value Individual #1,” which was among the files provided by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. The presentation cites CIA reports on bin Laden’s poor health, including renal disease, urinary tract infections, kidney stones and intestinal problems.

The plot to go from “Pharma to Target,” as one slide puts it, fits into a history of U.S. spies tracking bin Laden’s health. In 2002, the FBI and CIA detained a Pakistani surgeon for a month, interrogating him about the times he had treated bin Laden. The medications reportedly found inside the Abbottabad compound after bin Laden’s death fueled more speculation about his health. One unnamed intelligence official told to the British tabloid Daily Star that an herbal aphrodisiac was significant because “his sexual performance is an indicator of his state of health and how active he may have been in other areas.”

Link 3: NSA Planned to Hijack Google App Store to Hack Smartphones

The National Security Agency and its closest allies planned to hijack data links to Google and Samsung app stores to infect smartphones with spyware, a top-secret document reveals. The surveillance project was launched by a joint electronic eavesdropping unit called the Network Tradecraft Advancement Team, which includes spies from each of the countries in the “Five Eyes” alliance — the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Australia.

The newly published document shows how the agencies wanted to “exploit” app store servers – using them to launch so-called “man-in-the-middle” attacks to infect phones with the implants. A man-in-the-middle attack is a technique in which hackers place themselves between computers as they are communicating with each other; it is a tactic sometimes used by criminal hackers to defraud people. In this instance, the method would have allowed the surveillance agencies to modify the content of data packets passing between targeted smartphones and the app servers while an app was being downloaded or updated, inserting spyware that would be covertly sent to the phones.

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