Thursday, February 27, 2014

Webcams of millions of Yahoo! users under surveillance - Le Figaro

The monitoring agency GCHQ is the cause of this espionage, with the help of its American counterpart NSA. Yahoo! group expressed his anger, citing “an unprecedented level of violation of privacy” of its users.

almost every week, a lot of revelations about the extent of the monitoring system set up by the NSA. Thursday, the British newspaper The Guardian, which is based once again on the documents released by the computer Edward Snowden, asserts that U.S. monitoring agency helped her during the British GCHQ (Government Communications Headquarters) to intercept and store images webcam millions of Yahoo! users. A single period of six months, in 2008, called “Optic Nerve” program raised stills video conversations over 1, 8 million users of Yahoo! accounts around the world.

“Optic Nerve” still active in 2012, was especially communication services as Yahoo! UK agency had noticed that some of the targets used to exchange information. The program is operated discrimination: he was collecting “loose” images that users were suspicious or not, and safeguarded a picture every five minutes. The stated objective? Automatic face recognition experiment to monitor current targets GCHQ but also identify new. “The best pictures are the ones where the person is facing the camera with the right face well,” even describes one of the documents cited by GCHQ The Guardian. The use of these data passed by a tool NSA computer, but the documents that the newspaper had access does not specify how far the U.S. agency had access to the information collected via webcams.

Among the problems faced by the British agency, management of “a substantial amount of sexually explicit communications.” According to an internal document of GCHQ, they represent between 3 and 11% of harvested, images and whether the agency has tried to keep out of reach of its personnel, detection tools nudity were not powerful enough to catch any misleading pictures.

Furious, the Yahoo! group stated that if this information was true, they constituted “an unprecedented violation of the privacy of our users, which is completely unacceptable.” “We were not aware of and we will not tolerate ‘this activity, said a spokesman for the group, calling it” the world governments to reform legislation on the lookout for it is consistent with the principles we exposed in December. ” Eight giants of the internet launched last December calling for U.S. President Barack Obama frames supervisory practices, revelations Snowden having seriously tarnished their image among users.

During the past three months, several newspapers, including The Guardian also revealed that the NSA and GCHQ harvested data from mobile apps like Angry Birds, and that these agencies had infiltrated platforms for online games such as World of Warcarft and Second Life to recruit agents and flush out terrorists … Or that the NSA was able to creep into computers even when they are not connected to the Internet, including in order to damage the data.

(With AFP)

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