Wednesday, February 28, 2007

SpyCam'er Back in Court

MI - The child pornography and eavesdropping case against former Egelston Township Treasurer Brian Lee Hill is back on the local court schedule.

Hill is set for a pretrial conference 9 a.m. March 8 before 14th Circuit Judge Timothy G. Hicks on five counts of making or producing child sexually abusive material and five counts of using a computer to commit a crime, plus three counts of eavesdropping by installing a video device.

The eavesdropping charges, a two-year felony, are for allegedly snooping with a hidden camera on male teenage exchange students using the shower in his home at 1265 Drent. (more)

When Spies Go Bad

Estonia - Commander of Estonian Defense Forces, General-Major Ants Laaneots relieved on Tuesday the head of the military intelligence branch from his duties following allegations of spying on government officials.

The General Staff of the Defense Forces said Monday that Major Riho Uhtegi has been transferred to cadre reserve "due to service demands," but experts believe his dismissal is directly related to recent reports in the media that the Estonian military intelligence had been involved in "illegal activities."

Estonian newspaper Eesti Ekspress reported last week that military intelligence officers have been spying on defense ministry's staff and made attempts to recruit informers among officers, politicians and journalists. (more)

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

"Like this cat was watchin' me, man."

Acoustic Kitty was a CIA project launched in the 1960s attempting to use cats in spy missions. A battery and a microphone were implanted into a cat and an antenna into its tail. Due to problems with distraction, the cat's sense of hunger had to be removed in another operation. Surgical and training expenses are thought to have amounted to over 10 million British pounds.

The first cat mission was eavesdropping on two men in a park outside the Soviet compound on Wisconsin Avenue in Washington, D.C.. The cat was released nearby, but was hit and killed by a taxi almost immediately. Shortly thereafter the project was considered a failure and decided to be a total loss. (more)

Trojan Horse Trick #742

Security, spy gear disguised as ordinary household items...

Many of his cameras are disguised as ordinary household items - smoke detectors, clock radios and VCRs. They use secure digital video cards, similar to camera memory sticks, that plug into computers and make it easy to find the moment of truth.

And espionage has never been so affordable: Prices on digital video recorders have gone down in the last five years from $1,200 to $499.

So we thought we'd take a look at some of the most covert devices on the market, straight from Q Branch. After all, you only live twice. (more)

Trojan Horse Trick #741

"What a beautiful gift. Thank you!"

BIG mistake. One lamp is equipped with a microphone, attached to an always-on GSM cell phone, which is powered-up as soon as you plug your lamp into a wall outlet.

Doesn't matter where you put them - bedroom or office - the person now eavesdropping on you is just a phone call away ...anywhere in the world!

When was the last time you had your lamps checked? How about all those other items which surround you?

Beware of Geeks bearing gifts. (more)

Govt defends ‘spying’ amidst outrage

Kenya - Politicians and church leaders have expressed outrage over reports that the Government was spying on politicians to gauge their individual strengths on an election year. ...

But two Cabinet ministers Mr Amos Kimunya (Finance) and Mr Njeru Ndwiga (Co-operatives) defended Internal Security Minister Mr John Michuki, whose docket includes the Provincial Administration over the move, saying there was nothing about it that was unbecoming. (more)

Masons hit by bugging

Ireland - Police have launched an investigation into suspicions that meetings at one of Northern Ireland's largest Masonic Halls was bugged, the Belfast Telegraph can reveal today.

It is understood that the PSNI launched the probe after recordings were received in the post by Masonic officials at the headquarters of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Antrim at Rosemary Street in Belfast.

Police are investigating if the recordings are of secret rituals held in the building which is the main meeting place of freemasons in Co Antrim, one of the largest lodges in Ireland. (more)

Who watches you at work?

New Zealand - You might think that you're entitled to a certain amount of privacy at work, but this isn't always the case. Some employers have gone as far as putting secret cameras in employee changing areas and gotten away with it. Katrine Evans, assistant privacy commissioner, says privacy is governed by several principles and no methods of surveillance is completely banned. (more)

Monday, February 26, 2007

You're just 60 seconds away from being spied on!

SnoopStick is a USB flash drive type device that allows you to monitor what your kids, employees, or anyone [including Y-O-U] using your computer is doing while on the Internet. And, you can monitor them live, in real time, from anywhere in the world.

Simply plug the SnoopStick into the computer you want to monitor. Then run the setup program to install the SnoopStick monitoring components on the computer. The whole process takes less than 60 seconds.

The SnoopStick monitoring components are completely hidden, and there are no telltale signs that the computer is being monitored.

You can then unplug the SnoopStick and take it with you anywhere you go. No bigger than your thumb and less than 1/4" thick, you can carry it in your pocket, purse, or on your keychain.

Any time you want to see what web sites your kids or employees [or Y-O-U] are visiting, who they [or Y-O-U] are chatting with, and what they [or Y-O-U] are chatting about, [they or Y-O-U] simply plug in your SnoopStick to any Windows based computer with an Internet connection and a USB port. SnoopStick will automatically connect to the target computer.

...snoopstick it to them with some of these features...

- Send the user a pop up message alert. A good way to tell them they're busted!
- Turn off/on Internet access with the SnoopStick locally or remotely.
- Set allowable times for Internet access.
- Prevent users from using certain types of Internet programs.
- Block access to specified ports.
- Block access to web sites.

Picked as a winner, here, on 2/8.

Germany's "The Lives of Others," a searing look at totalitarian powers once wielded by East German secret police, the Stasi, won the Oscar for best foreign language film on Sunday.

The film by first-time filmmaker Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck won rave reviews for its portrait of a Stasi agent who, while bugging a couple's home, develops an unexpected sympathy for them.

Malaysian state drops plan to spy on unmarried sex

A conservative state in Malaysia has dropped plans to recruit a network of spies to report unmarried couples having sex.

The Chief Minister in the northern state of Terengganu says the plan was scrapped after the Malaysian Prime Minister voiced his opposition to the plan.

The Prime Minister had called the proposed spy network an invasion of privacy, warning that it could also send the wrong message to foreign tourists.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

"Do your own homework!"

A female science professor shares her personal spying experience... (more)

All of us know the feeling. It started in Third Grade when they looked over your shoulder. It continues now in the corporate world with co-workers and other corporations stealing your ideas and hard work.

The accompanying comments to her post are interesting, too. No consensus of moral opinion. Scary.

Nothing has changed except smart people now conduct quarterly searches for bugs and wiretaps.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

...and you thought they were Sneakers.

Comverse continues to be at the center of an international wiretapping controversy which has serious implications for U.S. security. Interesting investigative report by FOX News, which is now rumored to be classified.

Up the creek...

Mozambique Minister spying on lazy workers...

Mozambique's Labour Minister, Maria Helena Taipo, early this morning surprised her employees, that were supposed to attend the public, by looking into complaints about the Ministry's service. Shocked about the staff's late arrival, she ordered a day's wage cut for all. (more)

Sometimes, surveillance does not require any electronics!

Spouse Spies

From mobile phones that double as transmitters to private eyes in far-away countries, companies are banking on the suspicions of spouses...

Responding to popular demand among wives whose husbands frequently visit China on business, due diligence companies are marketing new mobile phone eavesdropping technology for wives to listen in on their hubbies' phone conversations there. ...

When eavesdropping is not enough, many due diligence companies can ratchet up their services to include paying off Chinese police to follow a cheating Taiwanese husband and catch him, literally, with his pants down, the report added.

On jamming cell phones...

"A client has asked me for information on blocking or jamming cellular phone and R/F signals from his corporate office." (from a well-respected security colleague)

Hi Sir,

Can't blame clients for asking. This is a fairly common request.
In the U.S. jamming is illegal, but (more importantly) clients need to consider the civil and criminal lawsuit possibilities.

"I couldn't call 911 from the bathroom where Charlie had his heart attack. I was doing CPR and couldn't leave him to use a regular phone. He died!!!"

Who had this illegal jammer installed?
[enter client's name here]

Who installed it?
[enter electrician's name here]

Who advised them to do it?
[enter security specialist's name here]

Lotz-o-deep-pockets to pick.

Everyone wants a simple, cheap solution. Jamming and shielding are security sirens. They only look attractive, in a Ms. Smith sort of way.

Alternate client solutions...
- Establish a clearly defined 'no cell phone at work' policy.
- Establish consequences for non-compliance.

- Enforce it consistently and equally.
- Install cell phone detectors to alert when a cell phone is in use.
- Forget about shielding out other RF (bug) transmissions.
- Establish a regular TSCM audit schedule to search for bugs.
- Improve perimeter and general information security.
- Periodically, test for leaks.

I am sure all this just echos what you have already told them in different words. This rant, however, may help you to show them that your colleagues back you up.

If the client insists, send him the T-shirt and say "Good-bye."


"This is your Captain... listening."

A Japan Airlines pilot has been arrested on suspicion of planting bugging devices at the house of a flight attendant with whom he once had a romantic relationship, it was learned Friday.

According to police, Masahiro Nomura, 39, installed two radio-transmitting concealed microphones in the woman's house in Setagaya Ward, Tokyo, and eavesdropped on her from June 2002 to November.

The relationship between Nomura and the flight attendant, 34, ended in October. She later found the microphones in a plug and an electric socket in her living room. She contacted the police, and they seized a receiver from Nomura's house on Feb. 9. (more)

Pssst... Wanna buy a KGB spy map?

What did the Russians ever do for us?
The spine-chilling fact is that they did more than you think.

Every Soviet leader from Stalin to Gorbachev knew not only where you lived but how to get there by tank.
For over 50 years, before, during and after the Cold War, the Soviet military undertook the most comprehensive global survey ever attempted and created detailed, accurate maps of practically every country in the world.

Satellite images, high altitude aerial reconnaissance including spies on the ground were used to collect all possible information. (more) (sample) Ideas... Makes a cool wall hanging, or placemats.

Walter Mitty's PI avatar - another SpyBot

Boasting a motion detector, video camera, microphone and loudspeaker, Spyke is the ultimate Wi-Fi-enabled robot. We love him and so will you!

Main Features
- Spy robot - Spyke moves, watches, speaks and listens
- VOIP phone - Use your Spyke as a wireless VOIP phone (compatible with Skype 3.0 PC technology)
- Digital Music Player - listen to your own music over Wi-Fi with Spyke

- Video Surveillance - When a movement is detected, Spyke activates an alarm on your computer or sends you a picture by email
- Wi-Fi card included

- Motion sensors activate automatically when something happens
- Returns to recharging station automatically when battery is low
- Control on local Wi-Fi connection or remotely on internet (more)

Friday, February 23, 2007

SnitchBot News - Smokers, your butt is burned.

Robot manufacturer Tmsuk, Kyushu University and the Kanazawa Institute of Technology from Japan have all put their expertise together to develop a robot that can sniff out smoke. (more)

Spy Briefs (aka dirty underwear)

Sales of fake detective badges soar...
Kuala Lumpur - Rights groups reacted angrily on Thursday to a Muslim Malaysian state's plans to hire spies to catch couples engaged in extramarital sex, fearing it would lead to abuses of power. ... Under the plan, spies trained by Terengganu's religious officials will be located in hotels and parks. They will be rewarded for tipping off authorities about couples caught in compromising situations. (more)


Meanwhile, over in Thailand...
Thailand's Shin Satellite has denied spying allegations by the Kingdom's military government. Despite that, Thai coup leader General Sonthi Boonyaratglin vows to take back control of the satellites. (more)


What's wrong with this picture?

Indonesia - On Monday, parliament's law commission will examine Mr Ruki (Chairman, KPK anti-corruption agency) over the counter-claims concerning the purchase of a $5 million phone tapping system by the corruption watchdog. ... The KPK was the only senior agency that had not been probed for corruption and the $5 million it paid for the wiretapping equipment was too high, cabinet minister Yusril Mahendra said. (more)

Spy Art

Art imitates life...
Build your own private spy agency. Travel around the world, trade with state secrets, weapon systems, spy codes, WMD, hire secretaries, agents, lawyers, helicopters and soldiers, establish agency stations and search for politicians. Game contains more than 30 missions including CIA Unlimited, Gen. Noriega, USAF, Colonel Gaddafi ,BND, Prime Minister, RAF, Cold War, Bin Laden, Sadam, KGB, Law Firm... (more)


Art Watches Back...
City officials in Chicago placed surveillance cameras on top of giant twin towers designed by the Spanish artist Jaume Plensa using funds from the US Department of Homeland Security.

Paul Gray, co-owner and director of Richard Gray Gallery in Chicago which represents Plensa in the US, said the city “did not get permission from the artist” to use his towers in this way.

“When we learned about the concerns of Chicago’s art lovers, we took them down immediately,” says Kevin Smith, a spokesman for the city’s Office of Emergency Management and Communications. (more) "...and, we really don't care for the long security lines at O'Hare either."


Watch Art, Watch Spies...
"The Good Shepherd,” a chilly film about a spy trapped in the cold of his own heart, seeks to put a tragic human face on the Central Intelligence Agency, namely that of Matt Damon. The story more or less begins and ends at the Bay of Pigs. (more)

The Oscar-nominated director of "The Lives of Others" says his next movie won't be about secret surveillance -- he wants to do "lots of other stuff." (more)

Deja Vu, the recent Denzel Washington film about an ATF agent, is not a particularly interesting film in its own right but gains significance when we locate it in the evolution of the surveillance film. This venerable tradition includes Hitchcock’s Rear Window (1954), Antonioni’s Blowup (1966), Coppola’s The Conversation (1974), Tony Scott’s Enemy of the State (1998), Spielberg’s Minority Report (2002), Michael Haneke’s Caché (2005), and Scorsese’s latest offering, The Departed (2006). (more - an excellent read)


“The more technology you use,
the easier it for them to keep tabs on you.”

~Edward 'Brill' Lyle

Thursday, February 22, 2007

"Learn How To Spy On Top Ten Sites"

The hype...
"Have you heard about the new site ... that helps you beat your competition by spying on it?" (more)

The reality...

The verdict...
We checked it out. If you are willing to trade your email address and your valuable time for a looong commercial message for marketing aids, in the hopes of gaining illicit 'spy' information on your competitors, using a few repackaged Internet search tools... Well, you get the idea.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Why smart organizations check for bugs... quarterly.

A controversy over covert video and audio surveillance equipment discovered in public buildings in a rural Ontario municipality has one elected official invoking the Watergate scandal.

The hidden cameras of Highlands East, in the Haliburton area, came to light last year at a fire hall. The station's commander had previously been dismissed when he and other volunteer firefighters were caught on tape drinking beer after the municipality had adopted a no-alcohol policy.

Highlands East Reeve Dave Burton and deputy reeve Jim Mackie, newly elected last November, are both volunteer firefighters, and criticized the use of surveillance in that matter and assumed it had ceased.

Mr. Mackie said he was astonished when a device was discovered in December concealed in a light fixture in the Gooderham firehall.

"The camera was powered up and broadcasting both audio and video, it was set up so anybody within about 300 feet who had that type of receiver could watch in there and listen with impunity."

After that discovery, Mr. Mackie said he went looking for other devices and found a hidden camera in the local arena, and another on the wall of the municipal building in Wilberforce.

Mr. Mackie said he was surprised by how "insidious" the device found in the fire hall was — no bigger than a loonie (a Canadian $1.00 coin measuring 26.5 mm). (more)

Stop & Shop... & Cop

MA - With help from US Secret Service agents, Stop & Shop Supermarket Cos. executives scrambled yesterday to determine how many consumers may have had their credit and debit card data stolen by high-tech thieves who apparently broke into checkout-line card readers and planted the equivalent of bugs to steal information. (more) Stop & Shop, thieves manipulate a point-of-sale device and plant a bugging device to capture card numbers and personal identification codes. ... Stop & Shop said it was first notified last week by a bank that credit-card numbers were stolen from its stores. (more)

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Some enchanted evening, you may see a stranger...

(Yet another interesting eavesdropping gadget. From the seller's ad...)
"Bionic ear allows you to hear a conversation from across a crowded room.

With the Spy Ear II, you have access to the latest technology in audio spying. Its mini size, lightweight and skin tone color allow you to hear from great distances without anyone knowing that you are wearing it. The ultra-sensitive microphone allows for crisp, clear audio all in a discreet, tiny earpiece.

There is a volume adjustment that allows you to easily change the volume and hone in on certain conversations.

Simply put, this tiny, cutting-edge device will turn any average Joe into a secret agent." (more)
If you see someone with this, sneak up behind them and snap your fingers.

County eavesdropping lawsuits settled...

...for $837,500.00

MI - Eight plaintiffs filed lawsuits in U.S. District Court in 2005 and 2006, alleging Michael Bridson (Undersherriff) had electronically eavesdropped on personal telephone conversations and, in some cases, repeated what he heard to others. (more)

Moral... Eavesdropping is expensive. Prevention is cheap.

DuPont Data Theft Shows Insider Risks

DE - Gary Min worked as a scientist at DuPont for 10 years, focusing on research involving a type of high-performance film. He also covertly used DuPont’s computer systems to steal trade secrets valued at more than $400 million shortly before joining a rival company.

Min’s case, the details of which were unsealed last week by the U.S. attorney’s office in Delaware, is the latest — and perhaps most extreme — example of the dangers posed to corporate data by rogue insiders. ...

Although Min downloaded or accessed about 15 times more documents than the next-heaviest user of the EDL did during the period in question, his activities appear to have gone unnoticed until after he submitted his resignation. (more)

How to prevent a $400,000,000.00 problem...
Have a counterespionage program in place.
• Check IT records,
• inspect for bug and wiretaps,
• and conduct counterespionage security surveys

We can help.

Field Report on Swedish Bugging Protests

Sweden - Saturday, demonstrations were held in four major cities in Sweden to protest against the bill to allow a governmental authority, the FRA, to bug data traffic of any Swedish citizen at will. Surpassing the United States in privacy abolishment, this bill allows the government to spy on any data traffic, including phone calls, SMS, e-mail, web traffic etc.

...a person named Thom Kiraly went up and read an interesting poem about bugging. It ended with “Listen to the citizens - but do it in the right way!” (more)

Spy Hard II

The press is having fun with this one, but keep in mind that talented people, working under extreme pressures, working "24", with limited information will make more than the normal amount of mistakes. Being able to admit one's mistakes is admirable, too. ~Kevin

UK - An official report into the actions of Britain's spies has left them looking more like the bumbling French detective Inspector Clouseau than swish, sophisticated James Bond.

It reveals they make an "unacceptably high" level of blunders.

More than 4,000 errors were recorded in a 15-month period, including tapping the wrong telephones and intercepting post from a suspect's address even though he had moved house.

It is the first report of its kind from Sir Swinton Thomas, the outgoing Interception of Communications Commissioner. ...

The most common mistake was simply entering the wrong telephone number on a tapping warrant. (more) (more)

The important part of this report went under-reported...
The long-established principle that the phones of MPs and peers cannot be tapped by the security services places them above the law and could prevent investigations into serious crime or terrorism, the prime minister's eavesdropping watchdog warned yesterday.

Sir Swinton Thomas urged Tony Blair to overrule objections by MPs, including some cabinet ministers, to the phone tap ban. (more)

Monday, February 19, 2007

Illegally bugged Czechs entitled to compensation

Prague - Czechs whose telephones were illegally wiretapped by the police would be entitled to compensation from the state under an amendment to the Penal Code drafted by the Justice Ministry... (more)

KPMG infiltrated - no business is immune.

An inside look at how the accounting giant was infiltrated by private intelligence firm Diligence.

In the spring of 2005, Guy Enright, an accountant at KPMG Financial Advisory Services Ltd. in Bermuda, got a call from a man identifying himself in a crisp British accent as Nick Hamilton. Hamilton said he needed to see Enright about matters of utmost importance.

Over the course of two meetings, Hamilton led Enright to believe he was a British intelligence officer, according to a person familiar with the encounters. He told Enright he wanted information about a KPMG project that Hamilton said had national security implications for Britain. Soon, Enright, who was born in Britain, was depositing confidential audit documents in plastic containers at drop-off points designated by Hamilton.

But Nick Hamilton was not an agent of Her Majesty's secret service, and the documents never found their way to the British government.

Nick Hamilton was in fact Nick Day, now 38, a onetime British agent and co-founder of Diligence Inc., a Washington private intelligence firm... (more)

As you can see, corporate espionage is now big business. Infiltration and eavesdropping are two espionage tricks which go hand in hand. Keep our number handy. ~Kevin

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Eavesdropping up in yet another country

Bangladesh - The interim government has intensified mobile phone tapping and email monitoring of a large number of individuals, ranging from politicians to journalists.

On the watch list are political leaders and businesspeople with dubious track record, past and present top bureaucrats with political affiliations, listed criminals, and also a few journalists and civil society members, sources in the telecom companies and intelligence agencies said. (more)

Dispatchers File Federal Wiretapping Lawsuit

Iowa - Three dispatchers at the Clinton County Law Center have filed a federal lawsuit claiming their personal phone calls were taped while they were at work. (more)

Belgium investigates alleged wiretapping in Brussels

Belgium - Former Euro-deputy Koldo Gorostiaga assured that "all signs and precedents point at Spanish secret services." They showed the alleged wiretapping system during a press conference.

Belgium's Minister of Justice Laurette Onkelinx announced, during an appearance in the Federal Parliament, that a judicial investigation had been opened to find out if the offices of the Basque outlawed Batasuna party in Brussels had been wiretapped and if it had been the work of foreign secrete services, which would suppose "a violation of the sovereignty principle." (more)

Pellicano Splash Landing

CA - Initially dubbed one of Hollywood's biggest scandals, the Anthony Pellicano wiretapping affair is landing with a thud.

A Feb. 15 Los Angeles Times story declared that prosecutors had filed "the latest and perhaps final federal indictment" in the case. But no one new was charged; the indictment merely adds more details of Pellicano's alleged wiretapping, including how he conspired with attorney Terry Christensen to tap the ex-wife of Kirk Kerkorian. (more)

Record number of wiretaps in 2006

Japan - Police in 2006 used a record-breaking number of authorized wiretaps to arrest 27 people nationwide in nine drug cases, Justice Minister Jinen Nagase told a Cabinet meeting Friday.

Compared with only five wiretaps conducted in 2005, the sharp rise "indicates authorized wiretapping seems to be taking hold as a means of criminal investigations," a Justice Ministry official said. (more)

Eavesdropping Prevention Trick #633

Does the office loudmouth sit near you?

Does your job involve confidential information?

Are co-workers eavesdropping on your private calls?

Install a small device which subtly raises the noise level around your office or cubicle. Cheap units emit a 'white or pink noise' (sounds like pleasant FM radio static), government security professionals prefer 'babble noise' - a cacaphony of unpredictable voices, music and background noise. Why? Because, predictable white and pink noise can be filtered out by serious eavesdroppers, babble is more secure.

Our favorite, Noisebath.

Other sound mitigation solutions...
Atlas Sound

Free White Papers...

Sound control is one element of a complete eavesdropping prevention program. If you don't have one, get one, here.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Your own Project HT Lingual - E-sized and Commercialized

The U.S. survey, conducted by e-mail archive company Fortiva and Jeffrey Plotkin, a partner with the law firm Pitney Hardin LLP, found 63 per cent of those which have formal electronic communications retention and review policies (aka spying on employee emails) said it has improved visibility into the risk the organization is exposed to as a result of employee communications.

Twenty-six per cent of those organizations terminated an employee as a result of information gathered from e-mail surveillance, and 12 per cent uncovered customer complaints that were not previously escalated or disclosed. (more)

"Extras get scale, buddy!"

NY - In a rebuke of a surveillance practice greatly expanded by the New York Police Department after the Sept. 11 attacks, a federal judge ruled that the police must stop the routine videotaping of people at public gatherings unless there is an indication that unlawful activity may occur.

The restrictions on videotaping do not apply to bridges, tunnels, airports, subways or street traffic, Judge Haight noted, but are meant to control police surveillance at events where people gather to exercise their rights under the First Amendment. (more)

Friday, February 16, 2007

Play, "If I were King."

If somebody is openly recording everything you say, can you secretly record them?

How about if...
-- you're all state employees,
-- conducting public business,
-- in a government building,
-- on the taxpayers' time?

And what if...
-- a fire drill interrupts the official hearing,
-- so a covert recording bugs everyone who strays within earshot?

Those are some of the puzzles put before Leon County Circuit Judge John Cooper on Thursday in the case of a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officer netted by Florida's felony law against secret recordings. The stakes are high. A conviction could cost Officer Albert Smythe his law-enforcement certification, besides the criminal penalties. (more)

If you liked "New Math"...'re just gonna' love the "New Daylight Savings."

All your 'automatic' clock adjusters, which operate via internal pre-programmed instructions, are now FUBAR'ed. The implications in the security and computer fields are far-reaching.

Who can we clock for this one???
-- Prankster, Ben Franklin, whose most outrageous ideas had a basis in brilliance. He originally broached the subject of candle-saving as a joke in his 1784 essay "An Economical Project?"
-- William WIllet, a London builder who published "The Waste of Daylight," in 1907?
-- The Germans, for first officially adopting the scheme in 1915?
-- WWI and WWII?
-- Or... the folks who decided to rewrite history again (in the age of computers) with their "Energy Policy Act of 2005?

"The time is, now; prepare!" (more)

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Is Your Cell Phone Bugged?

Bugged Cell Phones!!!

A hot 2000's topic delivered with cool retro 50's production values and a 60's tip of the hat to Mr. McGoohan.

Accurate and valuable.

Great job, Lauren!

Tapped Out

MI - Iosco County's insurance carrier will pay more than $800,000 to settle seven lawsuits related to alleged telephone eavesdropping at the county sheriff's department.

Three Iosco County Sheriff's Department dispatchers, two deputies and two employees of the Michigan State Police post in East Tawas sued the department after learning that their private telephone calls were recorded without their knowledge.

The seven plaintiffs will receive amounts ranging from $62,000 to $160,000 as payment for alleged damages and attorney fees, according to the settlement documents.

...the secret taping led to criminal charges against Iosco County Undersheriff Michael C. Bridson, who pleaded guilty in 2006 to two counts of felony eavesdropping under a delayed sentence. (more)

Who are The Gray Berets?

...and what should I expect in addition to eavesdropping?" (more)

Luk, the dark side calls...

LukWerks Spy Camera
Spy Camera Hidden in a Clock

The LukWerks Spy Camera is the world's first ever networked Spy Camera that delivers the power of professional-grade video security.

The Spy Camera masquerades as a sleek, fully functioning digital clock. This hidden camera is perfect for coverage of any area of the home or small business that requires discreet observance.

The spy clock camera has a powerful 400 MHz onboard processor, which powers the camera's ability to provide superior image quality, motion detection, and intelligent image management.
Installation and setup of the Spy Camera is a breeze. Just plug it into any electrical outlet and the hidden camera sends recorded video back to your PC! (more)

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Strange, but true! -- Bad Cupid

Valentine’s Day isn’t a great day for Cupid, Malik Cupid, that is.

Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore announced that Malik Cupid, 32, of Manhattan was arraigned Tuesday on one count of eavesdropping (and other charges).

Cupid assumed the identity of his ex-girlfriend ... while she was serving on active duty with the United States Army in Iraq. (more)

SpyCams & Eavesdropping - A global fear

Fear of hidden spycams and bugs is the topic of this blog, from India.

"Your most intimate moments can now be used to humiliate and blackmail you. That sadly, is the flip side of technological advancement. What couldn't be thought of only a few years ago, is now, a nightmare than can happen to the anyone of us.

So, taking some precautions might be in order. Watch out for hidden spy cameras in changing rooms. The bigger stores will, hopefully, not violate your privacy but always be careful in smaller shops. The same thing would be advisable in unfamiliar public toilets and in obviously seedy looking hotel room...

Spycams apart, there are also bugs you need to worry about. Not bed bugs but of the the electronic kind. Private phone conversations have been printed in newspapers, so if you are in top secret business talks, or even just dirty talking to your spouse, you wouldn't want to be overheard. But the greater horror would be if somebody eavesdropped on you with the help of a bug." ~ Manali (more)

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Be Your Own "Q"...

...Make Spy Gadgets!

"I just bought a new 2GB USB flash drive, and it happened to be sitting on the desk the other day next to a tube of Chap Stick. It looked like a perfect match once I got the drive out of it's case, but it ended up being a little too big to fit in the tube. I took it to work and bored the tube out on the lathe during my lunch break, made a few notches in the base and the bottom cap with the die grinder, sanded the edges of the circuit board a little, and finally got it to fit perfectly. Looks pretty good, even the LED shines through the bottom. Hopefully it will fare better when it ends up going through the dryer in my pants pocket than a regular tube of Chap Stick does." ~ Phillip Torrone (more)

Time to Update Your Corporate Policy

You're good!

You ban cameras.
You ban recorders.

You ban cell phones.

You ban digital pagers.


Recording wrist watches!

(more) & (more) & still (more)

Wrist Watch Voice Recorder FM Transmitter

Wireless MP3
Wrist Watch Voice Recorder
FM Transmitter
Record classroom lectures, meetings, conversations, etc.
(Yet another bug to worry about.)

Coincidence or Espionage? You decide.

This is no typo. There is actually a Chinese manufacturer by the name Nokir who makes mobile phones. We have seen companies ripping off the iPod but they were still creative with the naming. The Nokir E828 is a rip off the Nokia N73... (more)

Why VoIP is vulnerable

VoIP is simply data transmitted in digital packet form. This means it can be attacked, hacked, intercepted, manipulated, re-routed and degraded just like packets on the data network. All of the maladies of the data network -- viruses, worms, trojan, DoS attacks and hijacking -- are possible on the VoIP network.

...examples of potential VoIP attacks:
· Toll Fraud/Service Theft -- This will likely be the most common attack in the early stages of VoIP, where an unauthorized user gains access to the VoIP network by mimicking an authorized user or seizing control of an IP phone and initiating outbound long distance calls.

· Eavesdropping -- VoIP services measurement and troubleshooting software makes eavesdropping on a packetized voice calls relatively easy.

· Phishing -- The same techniques used to steal identity information over email are being used over VoIP. Criminals spoof caller identification information so it looks like the call is coming from a legitimate organization and then ask the call recipient for identity information. (more)

Monday, February 12, 2007

Why Your Top Execs Don't Want "Smart Phones"

"...the help desk had been asked to install client software that would allow e-mail to synchronize with upper management’s new smart phones." ~ written by a real security manager, “C.J. Kelly,” whose name and employer have been disguised for obvious reasons.

Why she freaked, and why you should, too...

- Company had no written security policy about smart phones.
- Smart phones require client-side software hooked into Outlook.
- Syncing requires user’s PC to be left running with Outlook open.
- E-mail transfers aren’t encrypted.
- The phones aren’t password-protected.
- Phones not managable remotely. Data can't be wiped if lost or stolen.
- E-mails are cached on the ISP's servers for up to seven days.
- Smart-phone owners [others] can access their e-mail via the Web.

She researched some good compromise solutions. The real solution, however, is a smarter 'smart phone'. Until then, seriously consider more secure communications alternatives. ~ Kevin (more)

TV show builds Spy Gear Room for 7-year old

Extreme Makeover Home Edition Builds Spy Gear Room for 7-Year-Old Boy filled with "The Latest and Greatest that Every Up and Coming Spy Could Possibly Wish For"

Kyle Thibodeau, age 7, is the lucky recipient of the first-ever Spy Gear Room built by the cast and crew of ABC TV's Extreme Makeover Home Edition. Kyle's room was revealed on an episode of EMHE and includes what the show's celebrity designer Tanya McQueen refers to as "the latest and greatest that every up and coming spy could possibly wish for." (more) (video) (mental antidote)

More bugs for your kids...

President Bush defends domestic eavesdropping, so why shouldn't you? The Mobile Spy Ear, which completes Wild Planet's trifecta of kiddie 007 gadgets, is moveable car with a microphone that transmits sounds to an earbud from up to 75 feet away.

Too bad the vehicle itself only travels 30 feet, and it's one of those wind up cars (you pull it backwards along the floor and then let go). But the signal supposedly works through walls, which means that the movement is really a secondary feature to being able to listen-in on your sister talking about boys. Ewwww.

Available next fall for between $14.99 and $19.99. – Noah Robischon

WPP Mob Guy Who Was FBI Bug Man Now Icy

Mafia soldier Angelo "Sonny" Mercurio, who helped the FBI land the first-ever bugging of a mob induction ceremony, has died (at 70) in Little Rock, Ark., where he lived in the federal witness-protection program, relatives said yesterday. (more)

Friday, February 9, 2007

Hidden Cameras & Microphones - White Paper List

Hidden Cameras, Hidden Microphones: Essays From the Experts
The Hidden Camera Conundrum: A Media Lawyer's Perspective
Mark Sableman
Hidden Cameras: A News Executive's Perspective
Mark Effron
Hidden Cameras and Other Inexact Sciences
Allan Maraynes
A Message About Methods: Make No Mistake
Bob Steele
High Standards for Hidden Cameras
Bob Steele
An Argument Against "Toilet Journalism"
Robert Lissit
Hidden Cameras: Handle With Care
Charlie Thompson
Worth Thinking About
Chris Heinbaugh
Hidden Cameras: Is the Truth Worth the Lie?
Stuart Watson
Hidden Cameras Answer Noble Call
Duane Pohlman
Lawyers, Journalists and Hidden Cameras
Sandra S. Baron

Hidden Cameras, Hidden Microphones: Statutes and Court Cases
Kathleen K. Olson
Federal Statutes and Court Cases
State-by-State Statutes and Court Cases


Corporate espionage goes undetected in India

The arrest of a Videsh Sanchar Nigam Limited employee for allegedly leaking information to a competing company is one of the few cases of corporate espionage that have come to light.

However, a majority of corporate espionage cases go undetected.

If detected, very few complaints come to light. And in the few cases that complaints are registered, hardly any action is taken.

"Only 20 per cent of corporate espionage cases are detected. Of this, a mere 20 per cent get reported and only 10 per cent can be solved," says Raghu Raman, CEO, Mahindra Special Services Group.

Moreover, there have been very few convictions in India till date for corporate espionage or data theft, while not a single case has been registered under Section 66 of the IT Act 2000.Ajay Jugran, Partner of law firm, Lawcombine, says, "This malady is deep-rooted. It's prevalent when Public Sector Undertakings call for bids. Trading in bidding information is rampant."

"Companies are even using annual maintenance contractors to plant surveillance software in rival firms. The software gives a daily log of the data via e-mail.

Is there a solution? Companies the world over are known to hire Sweep Teams to detect eavesdropping devices. (more)

Whether your problem is in India, the United States or elsewhere, we can help.

Smartphones (aka Pocket Bugs)

Despite the rise of smartphone malware, businesses aren't making security a priority.

"Just because they're not concerned doesn't mean it's any less of a threat," said Bill Hughes, principal analyst at In-Stat, a Scottsdale, Ariz.-based research firm. "They could be sitting on a time bomb for all they know."

Hughes said the amount of sensitive data living on smartphones is relatively low for now. But email and media files are vulnerable. Smartphones are already being attacked by spyware, such as keyloggers, he said. But it isn't just malware that poses a risk. (more)

Bathroom video snoop to be charged

NH - Police say a woman caught a male relative secretly videotaping and photographing her in the bathroom.

The man, 64-year-old Marvin Nicholson of Durham, turned himself in Tuesday. Police plan to charge him with wiretapping and invasion of privacy. They say he spied on the woman over the last two months while they were living in the same house. He’s also accused of recording the woman’s conversations. Police seized computers and recording equipment. (more)

Nicholson's arrest follows the arrest of Rochester resident Dennis S. Winship in December, who is charged with violation of privacy for allegedly using a miniature video camera attached to a long pole to record "intimate images" of a female neighbor while she used the bathroom.

Although the two cases are unrelated, Callaghan noted there were some similarities and acknowledged that residents may be "alarmed" by these recent crimes. (more)

Ex-employee undercut boss by bugging him

Greece - A 27-year-old man was able to beat his former boss to business deals after allegedly installing a sophisticated listening program in the shipowner’s laptop computer, police said yesterday after arresting the suspect.

Officers were called in by the businessman after his former employee, a Ukrainian national, set up a rival shipping company and seemed to be one step ahead of him in closing deals.

After examining the unnamed entrepreneur’s computer, officers discovered that spy software had been installed in the laptop which allegedly allowed the 27-year-old to automatically record any conversations made via the Internet.

Police found that the software, which the suspect allegedly devised on his own, also worked as a bug, recording voices even when the computer was switched off. (more)

Thursday, February 8, 2007

Pirro probe 'ongoing,' U.S. attorney says

NY - "Obviously, it's a very sensitive investigation," U.S. Attorney Michael Garcia said. "The only thing I've said since the initial confirmation of the investigation was that it was ongoing, and that's really all I can say about it."

Last year, while Pirro was running for state attorney general, news leaked that federal prosecutors were investigating whether she broke eavesdropping laws when she asked former New York City Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik to bug her family boat to find out if her husband, Albert, was cheating on her. (more)

See a good spy movie this weekend!

"The Lives of Others" (opens February 9) is a miracle of a film that manages to be both subtle and intense at the same time. It's a political thriller but also a portrait of unexpected humanity -- a marvel of controlled storytelling and mood, with brilliant performances. ...

The members of the Stasi (the East German secret police) who rule this place -- cruelly, arbitrarily, completely -- aren't caricatures but fully fleshed-out beings who inspire a real feeling of dread. They do what they want, when they want, because they can. They seem to get off on it.

Capt. Gerd Weisler, who's in charge of bugging their apartment and listening in on their conversations, phone calls, comings and goings, at first takes his responsibility seriously, as he takes everything seriously. One look at his spartan apartment shows us he has no life and doesn't want one. (more)

The Lives of Others has one of the most erudite screenplays of the year. ... The Lives of Others swept the German Film Awards this year, winning seven prizes, including best feature film, director, lead actor and cinematography. It is not to be missed... (more)

Nicole Kidman 'bugging device' to be tested

A bugging device allegedly found in the street outside Nicole Kidman's Sydney home will be made available to the legal team defending celebrity photographer Jamie Fawcett.

Fawcett was charged last October, accused of planting the plastic-covered device in foliage across the road from Kidman's home. (more)

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

The spying game: The latest gadgets for spooks

From night vision to tiny cameras, many everyday gadgets were originally developed for spies.

Guy Adams plays with the latest spookware to see what's heading our way...
- Implantable Radio Frequency Identification Tags
- Entomopter
- Keystroke Logger
- Mobile phone security
- Spyrobot camera
- Super-powered Spy Leg

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

New law coming? Place yer bets here!

Germany's High Court has handed down a landmark decision banning police from installing spyware on computers of suspected criminals without their knowledge.

The judges also argued that hacking computers by the police is not permitted under Germany's strict phone-tapping laws and that legislation would be needed to enable covert surveillance. (more)

DIY CSI Internet

...or how security directors can get up-to-speed fast on the mysterious workings of the on-line world.

Free, 137-page downloadable booklet from the U.S. Department of Justice -- Investigations Involving the Internet and Computer Networks. (get it)

Monday, February 5, 2007

Fun read for your kids...

Harriet Tubman, Secret Agent
by Thomas B. Allen (ages 9 and older)

Born a slave but determined to be free, Harriet Tubman was called Black Moses for leading hundreds of slaves to freedom during the Civil War. Many escaped from Maryland, where Harriet had been born around 1820.

A small woman who could neither read nor write, she became an important spy for the Union (North) and was the only female to lead men into battle. A $12,000 reward was put on her head, but she was never caught.

Tubman's story is just one in this fascinating account of spying during the 1861-65 war. (book)

Saturday, February 3, 2007

Ex Coke Employee Convicted in Trade Secrets Case

GA - A federal jury found a former Coca-Cola Co. employee guilty Friday of conspiring to steal trade secrets of the beverage giant and trying to sell them to rival PepsiCo Inc. for as much as $1.5 million.

Joya Williams, a former assistant to the director of global brands at Coca-Cola, could get a prison sentence of up to 10 years.

Williams, 41, showed no emotion as the verdict was read. "She's holding her own," said defense attorney Janice Singer, who said an appeal was planned. "She seems pretty strong." (more)

The rest of the story...
(1:48 PM) About an hour after Williams left court Friday, a fire broke out in the apartment building where she lived. The lawyer added, "This is not a good day for Joya."

(9:00+ PM) Williams was taken away from the Hunters Pointe apartment complex by authorities from the Gwinnett Fire Department and Alcohol, Fire and Tobacco agents. Williams was not in handcuffs and did not appear to be under arrest, but she was questioned for three hours inside the apartment manager's office. (more)

Bathroom SpyCam Found in Private Home

AL - A camera that a couple found hidden in their bathroom Tuesday led to the arrest Thursday of a Danville man, Lawrence County Sheriff Gene Mitchell said.

Mitchell said authorities arrested Michael Dewayne Richard, 34, of 3670 Alabama 157 and charged him with third-degree burglary, a class C felony, and criminal eavesdropping, a misdemeanor.

According to the sheriff, investigators retrieved a camera and an extensive amount of wiring from the couple's residence in the Wren community.

Mitchell said the wiring stretched from the outside of the house to the bathroom.

He said the suspect had attempted to hide the wiring by attaching it to a water hose and feeding it under the house. (more)

Friday, February 2, 2007

The Bugs that Wouldn't Die

Nigeria - The Senate yesterday alerted Nigerians on what it termed bugging of its chamber.

Raising the alarm on Thursday, Deputy Minority leader, Senator Daniel Saror, said that there are secret bugging devices, including four Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras in the Senate chamber.

He said that the devices were discovered last year and dismantled, wondering how they returned. Said Senator Saror: “Sometimes last year, we discovered a State Security Services (SSS) monitoring camera and we resolved to dismantle it and fortunately, it was dismantled then. Now, I can see four new cameras.

Reacting to this, Senate President, Chief Ken Nnamani, demanded an explanation from the Senate Clerk.

''Clerk, you can hear humming. Anytime I put on the microphone, it hums. We need explanation for all these things,'' he said.

Speaking with journalists after their meeting with the Senate President, Okere said: ''We have settled everything. By Tuesday, you would not see the cameras there again.''

Daily Sun (newspaper) gathered that CCTV cameras were strategically placed all over the National Assembly complex last December before the Senate went on recess. They include jamming devices, which prevent people from making or receiving phone calls. (more)