Tag Archive: surveillance

UNDER SURVEILLANCE: How Greensboro police monitor activists

Officers Steven Kory Flowers (left) and Rob Finch (right)

Officers Steven Kory Flowers (left) and Rob Finch (right)

From Yes Weekly!

By Eric Ginsberg

Anyone who has ever been involved in grassroots organizing, a social movement or activism has probably wondered at least once, if not frequently, about if they are being watched. Though police surveillance is no secret — uniformed officers regularly videotape legal protests, for example — what happens with the intelligence is usually a mystery to the public. (more…)

Anti-Repression Olympics in Germany?

Protesters from the group Camover in Germany destroy CCTV cameras. The vigilante group wants to see all surveillance cameras removed from public spaces, and are taking matters into their own hands, by taking down as many cameras as possible ahead of February’s European Police Congress.

Game to destroy CCTV cameras: vandalism or valid protest?

[The Guardian] – Activists in Berlin are teaming up to trash surveillance cameras. Points are given, with bonus scores for the most innovative modes of destruction

As a youth in a ski mask marches down a Berlin U-Bahn train, dressed head-to-toe in black, commuters may feel their only protection is the ceiling-mounted CCTV camera nearby. But he is not interested in stealing wallets or iPhones – he is after the camera itself. This is Camover, a new game being played across Berlin (more…)

Public Buses Across Country Quietly Adding Microphones to Record Passenger Conversations

Transit-CCTV-cameraFrom Wired

Transit authorities in cities across the country are quietly installing microphone-enabled surveillance systems on public buses that would give them the ability to record and store private conversations, according to documents obtained by a news outlet.

The systems are being installed in San Francisco, Baltimore, and other cities with funding from the Department of Homeland Security in some cases, according to the Daily, which obtained copies of contracts, procurement requests, specs and other documents. (more…)

They Can Do That?! 10 Outrageous Tactics Cops Get Away With

Dorothy_Police_Search_Banksy_Art_PrintFrom Alternet

By John Knefel
December 4, 2012

Talk to someone who has never dealt with the cops about police behaving badly, and he or she will inevitably say, “But they can’t do that! Can they?” The question of what the cops can or can’t do is natural enough for someone who never deals with cops, especially if their inexperience is due to class and/or race privilege. But a public defender would describe that question as naïve. In short, the cops can do almost anything they want, and often the most maddening tactics are actually completely legal.

There are many reasons for this, but three historical developments stand out: the war on drugs provided the template for social control based on race; 9/11 gave federal and local officials the opportunity to ensnare Muslims (and activists) in the ever-increasing surveillance and incarceration state; and a lack of concern from the public at large means these tactics can be applied, often controversy-free, to anyone who resists them.

What follows are 10 of the innumerable tactics the police can use against a population often incapable of constraining their behavior. (more…)

Facebook ‘likes’ used as evidence of material support of terrorism

From Fight Back News:

November 27, 2012

Los Angeles, CA – Four men – Sohiel Omar Kabir, Ralph Deleon, Miguel Alejandro Santana and Arifeen David Gojali – were charged with material support for terrorism in Riverside County, Nov. 19. The government alleges the men were planning to join the resistance to the U.S./NATO occupation of Afghanistan.

According to the indictment, evidence against the men includes postings and ‘likes’ on Facebook. The criminal complaint against the men also cites a Facebook discussion between two of the defendants, where they allegedly discuss plans of the Afghan resistance to negotiate with the U.S.

Much of the ‘evidence’ presented in the indictment is constitutionally protected speech, where the defendants express their views on the resistance to the occupation of Afghanistan. An entire section of the complaint is devoted to “social media.”

Laws covering material support for terrorism serve to criminalize opposition to U.S. wars and occupations.

Seattle: 5 indicted for May Day Action

From The Stranger – by Brendan Kiley

King County prosecutor Dan Satterberg has filed charges against five individuals for participating in the May Day smashup. Charging documents accuse five of riot, fourth-degree assault, and malicious mischief “against the peace and dignity of the state of Washington.”

The accused are: Phillip Neel, Kellen Linnell, Meaghnn Gonzales, Matthew Erickson, and Jason Michaels. Two have priors for crimes such as marijuana possession, obstructing a police officer, and harassment. Three have no known priors. (more…)

Children Forced To Use Palm Scanner

From Capitalist Press

Parents of students at Carroll County schools in Baltimore, Md., say a new policy that scans kids’ palms to pay for their lunches goes too far.

With the PalmSecure system, students hover their hands over an infrared scanner that ID’s them by the unique patterns in their skin and registers a sale, according to a report from the Daily Herald.

The Herald talked to Mike Richmond, who has two children at a Westminster elementary school. He said the scanning started before parents were given the chance to opt-out. (more…)

Americans Begin Destroying Police Cameras

From Business Insider

Police in Palmer Park, Md., plan to deploy cameras to surveil the other other cameras in their district.

Ari Ash of WTOP talked to police in the area, who said that local people had started targeting the speed cameras police put up in intersections, as well as surveillance cameras. The police said that since April, six people have been involved camera damaging activities.

One man literally pulled out a pistol and used the camera for target practice. Police found another speed camera flipped over—leading police to believe a gang of people committed the crime, considering the weight of the camera. Then there was the camera set up on a stand, near FedEx Field. A man walked up to it, cut off one of the legs, and walked away. (more…)

FBI seizes riseup.net server

Server Seizure, April 2012: April 18th, 2012, Riseup had a server seized by the US Federal Authorities. This is our press release.FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

FBI seizes server providing anonymous remailer and many other services from colocation facility.

Attack on Anonymous Speech

On Wednesday, April 18, at approximately 16:00 Eastern Time, U.S. Federal authorities removed a server from a colocation facility shared by Riseup Networks and May First/People Link in New York City. The seized server was operated by the European Counter Network (“ECN”), the oldest independent internet service provider in Europe, who, among many other things, provided an anonymous remailer service, Mixmaster, that was the target of an FBI investigation into the bomb threats against the University of Pittsburgh.

“The company running the facility has confirmed that the server was removed in conjunction with a search warrant issued by the FBI,” said May First/People Link director Jamie McClelland. “The server seizure is not only an attack against us, but an attack against all users of the Internet who depend on anonymous communication.”

(more…)

Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool

From New York Times – by Eric Lichtblau

Law enforcement tracking of cellphones, once the province mainly of federal agents, has become a powerful and widely used surveillance tool for local police officials, with hundreds of departments, large and small, often using it aggressively with little or no court oversight, documents show.

The practice has become big business for cellphone companies, too, with a handful of carriers marketing a catalog of “surveillance fees” to police departments to determine a suspect’s location, trace phone calls and texts or provide other services. Some departments log dozens of traces a month for both emergencies and routine investigations.

With cellphones ubiquitous, the police call phone tracing a valuable weapon in emergencies like child abductions and suicide calls and investigations in drug cases and murders. One police training manual describes cellphones as “the virtual biographer of our daily activities,” providing a hunting ground for learning contacts and travels. (more…)