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China's Border Guards Secretly Installing Spyware App on Tourists' Phones

China's Border Guards Secretly Installing Spyware App on Tourists' Phones

July 03, 2019Swati Khandelwal
Chinese authorities are secretly installing surveillance apps on smartphones of foreigners at border crossings in the Xinjiang region who are entering from neighboring Kyrgyzstan, an international investigation revealed. Xinjiang (XUAR) is an autonomous territory and home to many Muslim ethnic minority groups where China is known to be conducting massive surveillance operations, especially on the activities of Uighurs, a Muslim Turkic minority group of about 8 million people. The Chinese government has blamed the Muslim Turkic minority group for Islamic extremism and deadly attacks on Chinese targets. According to a joint investigation by New York Times , the Guardian, Süddeutsche Zeitung and more, the surveillance app has been designed to instantly extract emails, texts, calendar entries, call records, contacts and insecurely uploads them to a local server set-up at the check-point only. This suggests that the spyware app has not been designed to continuously and remotely t
Chinese Spying Chips Found Hidden On Servers Used By US Companies

Chinese Spying Chips Found Hidden On Servers Used By US Companies

October 04, 2018Mohit Kumar
A media report today revealed details of a significant supply chain attack which appears to be one of the largest corporate espionage and hardware hacking programs from a nation-state. According to a lengthy report published today by Bloomberg, a tiny surveillance chip, not much bigger than a grain of rice, has been found hidden in the servers used by nearly 30 American companies, including Apple and Amazon. The malicious chips, which were not part of the original server motherboards designed by the U.S-based company Super Micro, had been inserted during the manufacturing process in China. The report, based on a 3-year-long top-secret investigation in the United States, claims that the Chinese government-affiliated groups managed to infiltrate the supply chain to install tiny surveillance chips to motherboards which ended up in servers deployed by U.S. military, U.S. intelligence agencies, and many U.S. companies like Apple and Amazon. "Apple made its discovery of suspi
This is How CIA Disables Security Cameras During Hollywood-Style Operations

This is How CIA Disables Security Cameras During Hollywood-Style Operations

August 03, 2017Swati Khandelwal
In last 20 years, we have seen hundreds of caper/heist movies where spies or bank robbers hijack surveillance cameras of secure premises to either stop recording or set up an endless loop for covert operations without leaving any evidence. Whenever I see such scenes in a movie, I wonder and ask myself: Does this happen in real-life? Yes, it does, trust me—at least CIA agents are doing this. WikiLeaks has just unveiled another classified CIA project, dubbed ' Dumbo ,' which details how CIA agents hijack and manipulate webcams and microphones in Hollywood style "to gain and exploit physical access to target computers in CIA field operations." The Dumbo CIA project involves a USB thumb drive equipped with a Windows hacking tool that can identify installed webcams and microphones, either connected locally, wired or wirelessly via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. Once identified, the Dumbo program allows the CIA agents to: Mute all microphones Disables all network ad
Police Arrested Suspected Hacker Who Hacked the 'Hacking Team'

Police Arrested Suspected Hacker Who Hacked the 'Hacking Team'

February 01, 2017Swati Khandelwal
Remember the Hacker who hacked Hacking Team ? In 2015, a hacker named Phineas Fisher hacked Hacking Team – the Italy-based spyware company that sells spying software to law enforcement agencies worldwide – and exposed some 500 gigabytes of internal data for anyone to download. Now, the Spanish authorities believe that they have arrested Phineas Fisher, who was not just behind the embarrassing hack of Hacking Team, but also hacked the UK-based Gamma International, another highly secretive company which sells the popular spyware called " FinFisher ." During an investigation of a cyber attack against Sindicat De Mossos d'Esquadra (SME), Spain's Catalan police union, police in Spain have arrested three people, one of which detained in the city of Salamanca is suspected of being Fisher, according to local newspaper ARA . The cyber attack was carried out in May last year when Fisher announced via his own Twitter account that he had hacked the SME and also publ
Facebook, Twitter and Instagram Share Data with Location-based Social Media Surveillance Startup

Facebook, Twitter and Instagram Share Data with Location-based Social Media Surveillance Startup

October 12, 2016Mohit Kumar
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, VK, Google's Picasa and Youtube were handing over user data access to a Chicago-based Startup — the developer of a social media monitoring tool — which then sold this data to law enforcement agencies for surveillance purposes, the ACLU disclosed Tuesday. Government records obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) revealed that the big technology corporations gave "special access" to Geofeedia. Geofeedia is a controversial social media monitoring tool that pulls social media feeds via APIs and other means of access and then makes it searchable and accessible to its clients, who can search by location or keyword to quickly find recently posted and publicly available contents. The company has marketed its services to 500 law enforcement and public safety agencies as a tool to track racial protests in Ferguson, Missouri, involving the 2014 police shooting death of Mike Brown. With the help of a public records request, the
Yahoo Email Spying Scandal — Here's Everything that has Happened So Far

Yahoo Email Spying Scandal — Here's Everything that has Happened So Far

October 08, 2016Swati Khandelwal
Today Yahoo! is all over the Internet, but in a way the company would never have expected. It all started days ago when Reuters cited some anonymous sources and reported that Yahoo built a secret software to scan the emails of hundreds of millions of its users at the request of a U.S. intelligence service. At this point, we were not much clear about the intelligence agency: the National Security Agency or the FBI? The news outlet then reported that the company installed the software at the behest of Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court order. Following the report, the New York Times reported that Yahoo used its system developed to scan for child p*rnography and spam to search for emails containing an undisclosed digital "signature" of a certain method of communication employed by a state-sponsored terrorist organization. Although Yahoo denied the reports, saying they are "misleading," a series of anonymous sources, therefore, unaccounta
New Rules Require FBI to Get Warrant for Spying With ‘Stingrays’ Cell Phone Trackers

New Rules Require FBI to Get Warrant for Spying With ‘Stingrays’ Cell Phone Trackers

September 04, 2015Mohit Kumar
Remember StingRays ? The controversial cell phone spying tool , known as " Stingrays " or " IMSI catchers ," has been used by authorities to track criminal suspects most of the times without obtaining court orders. But now, the Federal law agencies will have to be more transparent about their use of Stingrays to spy on cell phones. Thanks to the new policy announced Thursday by the US Department of Justice. For years, local police and federal authorities have used and spent over $350,000 on Stingrays , which essentially mimic mobile phone tower, to track cell phones in countless investigations. What is Stingray? Stingrays , made by the Harris Corporation, has capabilities to access user's unique IDs and phone numbers, track and record locations, and sometimes even intercept Internet traffic and phone calls, send fake texts and install spyware on phones. The authorities used these tracking tools for years to breach people's privacy
German Spy-Agency Trades Citizens' Metadata in Exchange for NSA's Xkeyscore

German Spy-Agency Trades Citizens' Metadata in Exchange for NSA's Xkeyscore

August 27, 2015Swati Khandelwal
This is Really Insane!! Germany's top intelligence agency handed over details related to German citizen metadata just in order to obtain a copy of the National Security Agency's Main XKeyscore software , which was first revealed by Edward Snowden in 2013. According to the new documents obtained by the German newspaper Die Zeit, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution ( BfV - Bundesamtes für Verfassungsschutz ) traded data of its citizens for surveillance software from their US counterparts. Germany and the United States signed an agreement that would allow German spies to obtain a copy of the NSA's flagship tool Xkeyscore, to analyse data gathered in Germany. So they covertly illegally traded access to Germans' data with the NSA. XKeyscore surveillance software program was designed by the National Security Agency to collect and analyse intercepted data it obtains traveling over a network. The surveillance software is powerful
Tip — Installing Windows 10‬? Fix 35+ Privacy Issues With Just One Click

Tip — Installing Windows 10‬? Fix 35+ Privacy Issues With Just One Click

August 06, 2015Mohit Kumar
So you finally upgraded your system to Windows 10 and became one those 70 Million users. No doubt, Windows 10 is the Windows best version released by Microsoft, but you need to know that it does not offer much privacy by default. Windows 10 is making many headlines these days, even it made me to write two detailed articles about Windows 10’s most controversial options, i.e. Windows Wi-Fi sense and Windows 10 stealing users' Bandwidth to deliver updates. I noticed over 35 more privacy issues that come enabled by default in Windows 10, which has permission to send your vast amount of data back to Microsoft. While Installation, a click through " Express Settings " allows Windows 10 operating system to gather up your contacts, text and touch input, calendar details, and a lot more, including: Location Data Biometrics and Handwriting data Advertisement and its Tracking Code Apps access to your personal information Windows Defender and Sample subm
How Hacking Team and FBI planned to Unmask A Tor User

How Hacking Team and FBI planned to Unmask A Tor User

July 15, 2015Swati Khandelwal
The huge cache of internal files recently leaked from the controversial Italian surveillance software company Hacking Team has now revealed that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) purchased surveillance software from the company. The leaked documents contains more than 1 Million internal emails, including emails from FBI agent who wanted to unmask the identity of a user of Tor , the encrypted anonymizing network widely used by activists to keep their identities safe, but also used to host criminal activities. Unmasking Tor User In September last year, an FBI agent asked Hacking Team if the latest version of its Remote Control System (RCS), also known as Galileo - for which the company is famous for, would be capable to reveal the True IP address of a Tor user. The FBI agent only had the proxy IP address of the target, as according to FBI, the target may be using Tor Browser Bundle (TBB) or some other variant. So, the agent wanted to infect the target
How Google Is Tracking Your Movie and Event Activities

How Google Is Tracking Your Movie and Event Activities

June 23, 2015Mohit Kumar
No doubt, You must be aware that Google tracks you, but what you probably did not realize is how precisely and till what extent it tracks you. Well, Google knows which movies I watched where, when, at what time and with how many of my friends , and knows it so well — even my eyebrows raised slightly in surprise! Yes, you heard right. If you are using your Gmail account like I do, receiving all movie booking and tickets, Google can easily track your movie flavors and frequent hangout places without access to GPS. GOOGLE READ MY EMAILS FOR EVENT INFORMATION I was feeling bored last night, so I decided to watch a movie and moved towards Google to search newly released films. As I googled " Movies 2015 "... Holy Crap! What I saw on the monitor was unbelievable. In Google search results, I was able to see the list of all my past movie booking event activities and even my future bookings ( shown below ), and it was so, so accurate. If you have Google acc
US Court Rules NSA Phone surveillance Program is illegal

US Court Rules NSA Phone surveillance Program is illegal

May 07, 2015Swati Khandelwal
US Court rules NSA Phone surveillance Program is illegal United States’ National Security Agency (NSA) Spying program that systematically collects data about Millions of Americans' phone calls in bulk is illegal – Yes illegal. The NSA Phone surveillance program, first disclosed by the former NSA employee and whistleblower of global surveillance Edward Snowden , ruled illegal by a New York federal appeals court on Thursday, ordering lawmakers to either completely end or replace the program. Mass Collection of Metadata: Under this program, the U.S. agency has collected information about phone numbers called and how many times it has been called. However, no content of conversations has been recorded. The program also allegedly spied on European firms and among the individuals targeted was German Chancellor Angela Merkel . However, the Second U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York issued a 97-page in-depth court ruling , in which all the three judges said
Local Police Listening Your Cell-Phone Without a Warrant

Local Police Listening Your Cell-Phone Without a Warrant

April 10, 2015Mohit Kumar
By now, everyone knows that the major federal agencies and big organisations like FBI, NSA and CIA are spying on you under their massive global surveillance programmes. But here's the Kicker: Your local police might be spying on your activities, too. According to the recent details published by the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU), the police department of Erie County, New York, has used the controversial " Stingray " spying tool nearly 46 times since 2010 without any warrant. Also, the police department of Baltimore used the latest version of the Stingray surveillance device, called Hailstorm , more than 4,000 times in recent years, reports the Baltimore Sun. Late last year, we reported how US Marshals Service gathered data from millions of mobile phones by using a little device, nicknamed " Dirtbox ," in order to track criminals while recording innocent citizens’ information. Dirtbox was used in spy airplanes to mimic mobile phone
NSA Planted Stuxnet-Type Malware Deep Within Hard Drive Firmware

NSA Planted Stuxnet-Type Malware Deep Within Hard Drive Firmware

February 17, 2015Swati Khandelwal
The U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) may be hiding highly-sophisticated hacking payloads in the firmware of consumer hard drives over the last 15 to 20 years in a campaign, giving the agency the means to eavesdrop on thousands of targets’ computers, according to an analysis by Kaspersky labs and subsequent reports. 'EQUATION GROUP' BEHIND THE MALWARE The team of malicious actors is dubbed the the " Equation Group " by researchers from Moscow-based Kaspersky Lab, and describes them as " probably one of the most sophisticated cyber attack groups in the world," and "the most advanced threat actor we have seen. " The security researchers have documented 500 infections by Equation Group and believes that the actual number of victims likely reaches into the tens of thousands because of a self-destruct mechanism built into the malware. TOP MANUFACTURERS' HARD DRIVES ARE INFECTED Russian security experts reportedly uncovered sta
Web-based DropCam Surveillance Systems Vulnerable to Hackers

Web-based DropCam Surveillance Systems Vulnerable to Hackers

July 15, 2014Wang Wei
The popular home surveillance webcam service DropCam that keep an eye on your house when you aren’t there, can be used as a weapon against you by the cybercriminals, claimed a pair of researchers. San Francisco-based DropCam, last month announced it would be acquired by Google’s Nest for $555 million in cash, makes home-monitoring cameras for the past five years, which allow users to keep track of what's going on inside their homes using a small surveillance camera. Two researchers named Patrick Wardle and Colby Moore of Synack who discovered the weakness in the Wi-Fi enabled video monitoring system, which they will demonstrate at the DEFCON 22 Hacker Conference in Las Vegas next month. This WiFi-enabled security camera, that comes for $149 or $199, depending on video quality, requires little-to-no-effort to maintain. You plug it in, get it up on your WiFi, and all is set. If you want to check in on your cameras remotely, it cost you nothing, and if you want DropCam
Alleged BlackShades Malware Co-Author pleads not Guilty

Alleged BlackShades Malware Co-Author pleads not Guilty

May 31, 2014Swati Khandelwal
A Swedish man accused of being involved in the creation of the malicious software used to infect over half a million systems in more than dozens of countries, has pleaded not guilty in New York on Thursday to computer hacking charges brought against him. Alex Yucel, 24, who is the co-author of the Blackshades Remote Access Trojan (RAT), owned and operate an organization called Blackshades, which sold the notorious software to the other people and hackers across the country for prices ranging from $40 to $50. This allowed the hackers to remotely control the victims’ computers and to steal keystrokes, passwords and access to victims’ private files, according to the authorities. Blackshades malware is designed to steal victims’ usernames and passwords for email and Web services, instant messaging applications, FTP clients and lots more. In worst cases, the malicious software program even allows hackers to take remote control of users’ computer and webcam to take photos or v
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