German Authorities Raiding Homes To Find Skype Tapping Whistleblower

from the drawing-more-attention... dept

Apparently a whistleblower recently leaked some evidence that German authorities were using a special trojan horse software to tap Skype audio conversations. The document detailing this was leaked to the German Pirate Party, one of many international “Pirate Parties” that have been formed in recent years to push for more reasonable government policies on a variety of fronts from intellectual property to privacy and government surveillance. Illegally tapping Skype conversations may be illegal, but it seems that German authorities are a lot more interested in tracking down who leaked the documents and have raided the homes of various German Pirate Party members, confiscating computer equipment. Of course, if anything, this would seem to confirm that the government was at least experimenting with, if not actively using, such a trojan horse wiretapping program — and the raids have only served to generate much more attention over that fact.

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Comments on “German Authorities Raiding Homes To Find Skype Tapping Whistleblower”

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24 Comments
Overcast says:

The THs were used just like regular “bugs” and wiretapping is used to gather evidence on suspected criminals. Not nescesarily illegal or evil or Big brother thing.

And if the laws change and other things become illegal – well, you may find that you are a criminal as well. Heck, in the 40’s in Germany, it was illegal to marry a Jew.

Just stating a fact, that’s all.

Shohat says:

Re: To Overcast

Your statement will remain true regardless of what is the subject. I agree with it globally, but it is not relevant to ANY subject.

You might as well say it about prisons, the codex of laws, etc…

If one day farting is outlawed, you might find yourself in prison for farting. Doesn’t mean we should abolish prisons now.

dave says:

I think you misunderstand

This article is about the German gov’t searching for the person who ‘outed’ their capability of wiretapping Skype calls. It’s not about something truly confidential, such as the gov’t wiretapping person A, but that they actually could wiretap Skype calls now, as well as regular hardwired phones and cell phones.

This is a “we must find and shoot the messenger to dissuade others from being messengers in the future” type of thing.

bikey (profile) says:

skype

What’s interesting about this is that the link between IP (i.e. industrial countries’ last link to the world economy, especially now that the financial services sector has collapsed) and illegal government (increasingly doing the IP industry’s dirty work) surveillance is finally becoming clear. How and why they get to your computer, and what they are bound to find there (infringement of someone’s IP no matter who you are) should frighten everyone with a pulse.

Henrik R Clausen says:

They may be collecting names of Israel-supporters

An unsourced contact told me that the German police is also collecting names, email addresses etc. of people who sign pro-Israel petitions on the Internet.

Now tell me how that, in essense, differs from German police collecting information on people doing business with Jews in the 1930’s?

But I’m glad to see that Skype encryption as such apparently has not been compromised.

Anon-7 (profile) says:

Re: They may be collecting names of Israel-supporters

Although the Skype™ data streams are encrypted with a proprietary algorithm, preventing anyone from listening in on Skype-to-Skype or Skype-to-land line conversations (except for the last leg from the telephone central office to a caller’s telephone), it is reported that the police in The Netherlands and in Austria have the ability to listen in on Skype calls at will. If they can do it, presumably police and government snoops around the world can do it, too. Whether you talk on a land line, a cell phone or a Skype connection, you should assume that someone can listen in and that someone is listening in.

J. Edgar Hoover, the late former director of the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation is credited with saying, “If you don’t want it known, don’t use the phone.”

Sydney says:

Re: Real Estate Search

Yeah, really good! I am totally agreed with this article it’s a good time to purchase a home because the recession period is going on and the rates of a house is little bit low so we can say that it’s a real time and the property sellers are also hunger for selling so i think we should not miss the best opportunity. This article is about the German gov’t searching for the person who ‘outed’ their capability of wiretapping Skype calls. It’s not about something truly confidential, such as the gov’t wiretapping person A, but that they actually could wiretap Skype calls now, as well as regular hardwired phones and cell phones.
I won’t miss this better opportunity. Great post i look forward to reading more!

Sydney
Real Estate Search

Sydney says:

Real Estate Search

Yeah, really good! I am totally agreed with this article it’s a good time to purchase a home because the recession period is going on and the rates of a house is little bit low so we can say that it’s a real time and the property sellers are also hunger for selling so i think we should not miss the best opportunity. This article is about the German gov’t searching for the person who ‘outed’ their capability of wiretapping Skype calls. It’s not about something truly confidential, such as the gov’t wiretapping person A, but that they actually could wiretap Skype calls now, as well as regular hardwired phones and cell phones.
I won’t miss this better opportunity. Great post i look forward to reading more!

Sydney
Real Estate Search

Phil Cooper (profile) says:

Rather heavy-handed

Raiding people’s homes seems a rather heavy-handed way to handle this situation. Once information has flown the coop and has been spread on the Internet, it’s a lost cause, anyway. The recent “Climategate scandal” perfectly serves to illustrate this point.

So, what’s the big deal with monitoring Skype traffic? We keep hearing rumours about ECHELON being able to sift through millions of phone calls and emails, both domestic and international, and the system has been doing so for over a decade. Big Brother is watching. If George Orwell only knew …

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