Sunday, February 21, 2016


Election years present an increased risk of politically motived electronic eavesdropping. The candidates, campaign staff, political organizations, the press and/or news media may be targeted for electronic eavesdropping. From campaign strategies to dirty little secrets, an election can be won (or lost) because valuable information is captured, leveraged and/or reported.

An exclusive election news story can make the career of a reporter, or generate significant revenue for a news organization. An election news story can launch a candidate to the top of the polls, or destroy their chances of winning the election. Was the information collected legally? Maybe, and maybe not. But, to a spy who seeks to influence an election, the potential reward far outweighs the risk of being caught. The news organization that breaks the pivotal story is often the winner. The candidate that outwits the eavesdropper(s) may be closer to the election victory. But, the bugged candidate or organization may be faced with a very damaging outcome.

The election candidate’s hopes for victory may instead collide with the demise of their political aspirations. How can damaging politically motivated election outcomes be prevented? Have you heard of technical surveillance countermeasures (TSCM)? It’s the science of detecting bugging devices. We’ll explain how TSCM can help prevent the damaging outcomes of politically motivated electronic eavesdropping.

Read more here.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Gift Rolex watches to three senior Liberal politicians might have been bugged..

It is unknown watch exact model of the luxury Rolex watch Tony Abbott, Ian Macfarland and Stuart Robert were given.

Former Defence minister Joel Fitzgibbon says it is "absolutely possible" Rolex watches gifted to Tony Abbott, Stuart Robert and Ian Macfarlane by a Chinese businessman were bugged.

Intelligence sources are concerned about Chinese intelligence agencies targeting Australian MPs and want all items offered as gifts checked for bugs, Fairfax Media reports.
Mr Fitzgibbon confirmed today any gifts he received were sent to the Defence Signals Directorate, now the Australian Signals Directorate, for X-raying.

"Anyone in a senior position should do the same in the interests of national security," Mr Fitzgibbon said.

However, spokespeople for Mr Robert and Mr Macfarlane admitted the watches were not submitted for any sort of testing. Mr Abbott's office declined to comment, according to Fairfax.

The Rolex watches were gifted to the three politicians by Chinese billionaire Li Ruipeng in June 2013.

Read more here.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Your VoIP phone may be spying on you...

A simple exploit has been discovered that allows an attacker to leverage the weak default passwords of a Voice over IP (VoIP) phone in order to eavesdrop on conversations.

Security consultant Paul Moore writes on his website that he first came up with the idea when he was asked to observe a company's installation of several wireless access points and VoIP phones as well as provide recommendations on how to harden the access points' security.

Despite the fact that the organization was fitting enterprise-grade Cisco, Snom and Ubiquiti UniFi equipment, the personnel with whom Moore was working agreed that there was no immediate need to change the VoIP phones' default credentials.

"We'll just use defaults, for now," Moore quotes them to have said. "That password will do, for now."

It was then that the security consultant decided to see just how insecure a VoIP phone's default settings are.

Little did he know what surprise lay in store.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Cops arrest teen for hack and leak of DHS, FBI data

A 16-year-old boy living in England has been arrested in connection with the recent hack of FBI and DHS data, as well as the personal email accounts of CIA director John Brennan and homeland security chief Jeh Johnson.

Fox has confirmed that British authorities have arrested the still- unnamed teen with help from the FBI and that they are looking for possible accomplices.

The alleged hacker had told Motherboard webzine that he had swiped the names, titles and contact information for 20,000 FBI employees and 9,000 Department of Homeland Security employees. He told Motherboard this was possible through a compromised Department of Justice email.

Authorities believe this is the same hacker who compromised the private email accounts of Brennan and Johnson in October, though officials say neither man used these accounts for government use. As for the agency data, reports indicate that the pilfered information amounted to an internal phone directory.

Spying equipment sales soar for Valentine’s Day

(KWQC) – Is distance separating you from your significant other this Valentine’s Day?

He or she may still be with you, and not just in spirit.
Sales of hidden cameras and GPS trackers “have been soaring in the 2-3 weeks before Valentine’s Day,” according to Allen Walton of online retailer SpyGuy Security.

“We’ve seen sales go up by about 30% over the usual volume,” Walton tells KWQC.
“This time of year is way busier for us over Black Friday or Cyber Monday.”And leery lovers are not shy about their suspicion.“People are straight up telling us that they think their partner is going to cheat on them this weekend,” Walton says.

“Yesterday a male customer paid nearly $500 for our top of the line GPS tracking kit and overnight shipping. He’s going to be out of town this weekend and thinks his wife is having an affair.”

Read more here.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

People turn their smartphones into spying devices for just $5/month

Last month, Wired introduced us to “Symphony, the company that tracks Netflix’s elusive ratings.” Netflix famously doesn’t release information about how many people watch its shows and movies, but Symphony Advanced Media reported that 4.8 million people aged 18-49 watchedJessica Jones and 3.8 million in the same group watched Master of None.How did Symphony come up with these secretive numbers? By turning thousands of people’s phones into listening devices.

Symphony Advanced Media, founded in 2010, has recruited over 15,000 people to be part of its “panel of media insiders.” They downloaded an app from Symphony that collects a ton of information from their smartphones, and turns on their microphones every minute for 5-6 seconds to see what they’re watching on their TV or computer. Here’s how Symphony describes on its website what it knows about each individual in its panel:

Read more here.