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State paranoia...

The UK Ministry of Defence outlines plans to scan and analyse social media for rapid warning of changes in political sentiment


Link Here9th October 2021
The UK Ministry of defence has published a wide ranging paper about better ways for it to catalogue and analyse data from multiple sources, mostly for military purposes.

The document contains a brief section speaking of a capability to monitor social media with a view to analysing changes in political sentiment:

The below present example scenarios for Defence to drive battlespace advantage and business efficiency through exploiting its data in a multi-domain and integrated environment.

Political demonstration:

  • Sensors: Automated scanning of social media platforms (analysing key words and interactions) detects change in population sentiment.

  • Decision makers: Local authorities are quickly informed of change in sentiment. Decision making is enhanced by local surveillance of groups of interest.

  • Effectors: Escalated monitoring and intelligence gathering, with heightened readiness measures to respond in place.

Surely an incredibly short paragraph to describe such an enormous capability for state snooping.

 

 

Macron conspires to turn France into an authoritarian state...

As he sets up a commission targeting conspiracy theorists


Link Here 30th September 2021
Full story: Internet Censorship in France...Web blocking in the name of child protection
French president Emmanuel Macron has been slammed after he set up a commission to fight conspiracy theories which critics have labelled the thought police. He said he believes conspiracy theories are a poison to French society. Members will include 15 academics, as well as journalists, teachers and lawyers.

Macron has asked them to produce a report on topics including how to prevent internet algorithms enslaving society, how advertisers exploit fake news and how to prevent foreign rival powers from spreading information.

Macron said in a TV interview that conspiracy theories are a key problem for France which is battling the perspective that all views are equal, that those of someone who is not a specialist but who has an opinion on the coronavirus are just as valid as those of a scientist.

But Francois-Bernard Huyghe, a political scientist at the Institute for International and Strategic Affairs in Paris, has slammed Mr Macron's new commission. He said:

I don't think that multiplying laws, censoring social media accounts or treating people as cretins is the solution. It provokes the opposite effect to the one desired and the feeling that something is being hidden.

 

 

Robocop...

Singapore launches dystopian robots to police bad behavior


Link Here9th September 2021
Singapore is testing the use of patrol robots as the new addition to its mass surveillance infrastructure and the pair of machines, named "Xavier," will have the task of making sure the country's residents behave themselves in public spaces.

Singapore's Home Team Science and Technology Agency announced a 3 week trial of the technology before it is handed over to the local police. The intent is to use the robots as supplementary workforce to help out Singapore's public officers.

The "Xaviers" are fitted with cameras and networked with a command and control center, and report back on people's "bad behavior" in real time.

And what qualifies for bad social behavior in Singapore right now is falling afoul of COVID restrictions, but also things like parking your bike where you're not supposed to, or smoking in public areas.

There is also a re-educational element, as the robots will show messages instructing humans on what the expected, "proper" social behavior should be.

 

 

Security with as many holes as Swiss cheese...

Supposedly secure ProtonMail service snoops on French climate activist on orders from a Swiss court


Link Here9th September 2021
Encrypted-email company ProtonMail sells itself on its privacy features, promising to let uses take control of their personal data.

But it had been legally obliged to collect data from an account said to be linked to a climate activist arrested by French police.

ProtonMail's website previously claimed encrypted emails cannot be shared with third parties. And as well as offering end-to-end encryption, it did not, by default, keep any IP [Internet Protocol] logs which can be linked to your anonymous email account.

ProtonMail has now removed the claim from the front page of its website, which it said it would update to clarify its obligations in cases of criminal prosecution. Its privacy policy now says: If you are breaking Swiss law, ProtonMail can be legally compelled to log your IP address as part of a Swiss criminal investigation.

The company also publishes reports of the requests for information it receives. And last year, it received more than 3,500 requests for assistance from Swiss authorities.

The company said it stood with activists and suggested those seeking anonymity also use The Onion Router (Tor) network, which hides users IP addresses under several layers of security.


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