Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Government Surveillance: The Face of Abuse

Speaking of Ukraine ….

There is an interesting piece in the NYT this morning (1/21/14) reporting on renewed Ukraine protests. The connection here is not fully made, but it looks like this:

1.  Ukraine parliament passes laws making it a crime to be present at a violent assembly.

2.  Peaceable, or sort of peaceable, protest occurs.

3.  The government sends a text message to everyone's cell phone who was present at the protest--"You have been registered as being present at the scene of a disturbance."

4.  There are thugs present at this protest making it violent.  They beat on protesters, they break windows, upend cars, and such.  When cornered by some of the protesters, these thugs report they have been paid $25 to cause the disturbance.  It's not entirely clear who paid them.

5.  Activist leaders are pinpointed and disappeared.
"An activist who has been prominent in the movement, Ihor Lutsenko, went missing Tuesday after unknown men forced him into a car in the parking lot of a hospital, according to a Facebook post by Mr. Lutsenko’s wife."
Here is the article. 

It's not a far stretch to imagine this type of abuse of NSA surveillance and technology being abused to battle something like Occupy Oakland.

There is risk in this.

1 comment:

  1. I think not. American thugs would want more money and perhaps immunity from prosecution.
    A more likely scenario is that a major contributor to an out of office party or politician will be vilified by secret data and his power and influence is destroyed.
    In America, (as we used to say in the radical 70s), the personal is political. Today, it means every one for themselves.