Inside the shadow world of commercialised spook spyware

Western and Chinese high-tech companies are competing aggressively to sell, install and manage intrusive and dangerous internet surveillance and communications control equipment for the world’s most brutal regimes, a six-month investigation has found.

During 2011, investigators from Privacy International, a London-based NGO, infiltrated a circuit of closed international surveillance equipment marketing conferences, obtaining private briefings and technical product specifications from contract-hungry sales executives. The group will publish its data and document haul on the net today, in conjunction with other campaigners.

The scale and audacity of the proposals in many of the companies’ documents and hand-out DVDs is breathtaking. They describe and offer for unrestricted sale technologies which were in existence a decade ago, but which were held in utmost secrecy by major intelligence agencies such as the US National Security Agency (NSA) and Britain’s GCHQ — via redwolf.newsvine.com

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