This video says about itself:
‘Shoot first, ask questions later’ – Bahrain police motto?
Thousands of anti-government protesters have clashed with riot police in Bahrain. Police in the capital have fired tear gas to disperse crowds in the capital. At least 50 people have been killed since unrest began in February. For more on this RT talks to Sayed Hadi Al-Mosawi, a member of the opposition who was at the protests.
For Three Bahraini Medical Students, a Lesson in Repression: here.
Bahraini netizens are rallying online to draw attention to appalling conditions at the central Jaw Prison, which houses political detainees, among others: here.
Bahrain Feature: Inside the Appeals Court — A Tale of “Secret Sources” and Justice Repeatedly Delayed for Younis Ashoori: here.
Less than three weeks ago, the predominantly Sunni political group dubbed The Gathering of National Unity (TGONU) released an important 14-page political statement in which it articulated its view on becoming a political movement independent of the government. The report, which took on a confrontational tone, comes a long way from February 2011 when TGONU emerged mainly as a Sunni response to the Shiite-dominant protests taking place at GCC (Pearl) Roundabout: here.
Reblogged this on NonviolentConflict.
Cyber Attacks on Activists Traced to FinFisher Spyware of Gamma
Vernon Silver, ©2012 Bloomberg News
Published 07:58 a.m., Wednesday, July 25, 2012
July 25 (Bloomberg) — It’s one of the world’s best-known and elusive cyber weapons: FinFisher, a spyware sold by U.K.- based Gamma Group, which can secretly take remote control of a computer, copying files, intercepting Skype calls and logging every keystroke.
For the past year, human rights advocates and virus hunters have scrutinized FinFisher, seeking to uncover potential abuses. They got a glimpse of its reach when a FinFisher sales pitch to Egyptian state security was uncovered after that country’s February 2011 revolution. In December, anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks published Gamma promotional videos showing how police could plant FinFisher on a target’s computer.
“We know it exists, but we’ve never seen it — you can imagine a rare diamond,” says Mikko Hypponen, chief research officer at Helsinki-based data security company F-Secure Oyj. He posted the Egypt documents online last year and said if a copy of the software itself were found, he’d write anti-virus protection against it.
Now he may get his wish.
Researchers believe they’ve identified copies of FinFisher, based on an examination of malicious software e-mailed to Bahraini activists, they say. Their research, which is being published today by the University of Toronto Munk School of Global Affairs’ Citizen Lab, is based on five different e-mails obtained by Bloomberg News from people targeted by the malware.
Pro-democracy activists received the malware in Washington, London and Manama, the capital of Bahrain, the Persian Gulf kingdom that has been gripped by tension since a crackdown on protests last year.
The findings illustrate how the largely unregulated trade in offensive hacking tools is transforming surveillance, making it more intrusive as it reaches across borders and peers into peoples’ digital devices. From anywhere on the globe, the software can penetrate the most private spaces, turning on computer web cameras and reading documents as they are being typed.
“Selling software that allows for the taking over of computers without rule of law can lead to abuse,” says Courtney Radsch, senior program manager for freedom of expression at Washington-based Freedom House, which promotes human rights.
Gamma executive Martin J. Muench declined immediate comment pending research after being e-mailed a Web link to the Citizen Lab report and questions related to its findings. Muench, who leads the FinFisher product portfolio, is the managing director of the group’s Munich-based Gamma International GmbH. Gamma Group also markets FinFisher through Andover, England-based Gamma International UK Ltd.
Muench said in a July 23 e-mail that the company can’t comment on any individual customers and that Gamma complies with the export regulations of the U.K., U.S. and Germany.
Muench, 30, said in that e-mail that FinFisher is a tool for monitoring criminals, and that to reduce the risk of abuse of its products the company only sells FinFisher to governments.
The recipients of the Bahrain-related e-mails — who include a naturalized U.S. citizen who owns gas stations in Alabama, a London-based human rights activist and a British-born economist in Bahrain — each say they don’t know of any law enforcement investigations or charges against them.
Two of the recipients said they were suspicious of the e- mails and didn’t click on the attachments, while the third said he tried and failed to download an attachment to his Blackberry.
The analysis of their e-mails showed the malware they received acts as a Trojan, a type of software named after the legendary wooden horse that Greek warriors used to sneak into Troy before sacking the ancient city. It takes screen shots, intercepts voice-over-Internet calls and transmits a record of every keystroke to a computer in Manama.
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