GCHQ Threaten “Ethically Worse” Tactics Over Snapchat Row

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Sir David Omand, a former Director of GCHQ, has told an audience at the LSE that spooks will be forced into “ethically worse” behaviour because of the trend towards end-to-end encrypted communications used by apps such as Snapchat and Whatsapp. Sir David, who in his role as security and intelligence co-ordinator at the Cabinet Office insisted to Tony Blair that Daivd Kelly’s name should be given to the foreign affairs select committee, warned that spies will be forced into “close access work” because they can’t monitor en masse the encoded information sent through mobile messaging services.

Close access work means agents getting physically close to and monitoring suspects. i.e. doing their job.

“One of the results of Snowden is that the companies are heavily encrypting end to end, that’s probably inevitable, it would probably have come anyway. But Snowden has accelerated it. The result is that the intelligence agencies and the police are not going give up trying to get the bad guys, they’ve just got to get closer to the bad guys. So what we’re actually going to see I predict is more close access work. Now you can say that’s more targeted so that fits your way of thinking, but in terms of intrusion into personal privacy, collateral intrusion into privacy; we’re actually likely to end up in ethically worse positions than we were before.”

Techno Guido is confused why specifically targeting the bad guys is “ethically bad”…

H/T TBIJ

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Quote of the Day

Dr Alexander Kogan, the app developer who originally harvested the Facebook data, said…

“I think what Cambridge Analytica has tried to sell is magic and made claims this is incredibly accurate and it tells you everything there is to tell about you. But I think the reality is it’s not that. If you sit down and you really work through the statistics and you think what does a correlation of point three means, those claims quickly fall apart. And that’s something any person with a statistical background can go and do.”

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