EU “cyber snoops” sue Sweden for fighting Big Brother – Although Big Brother already is here

By Henrik Palmgren | redicecreations.com

Sweden government is picking a fight with the EU over plans to monitor and store all telecom and internet traffic, when every call, every text, even every email will be watched if the EU has its way.

Here is the video from RT at YouTube

Watching this report from RT might give you the impression that Sweden has until now been spared from the global emerging surveillance society, and if you for a moment were thinking about escaping to Sweden in an effort to escaping Big Brother in your own country, I’m sorry to make you disappointed.

Although this report is focusing on the most recent battle Sweden is having with the EU, there are a few errors in this report that needs to be pointed out. First off, what is not taken into account is the already existing Swedish FRA law. A government snooping system that has been in place since 1st of Januari 2009.

The FRA law is a legislative package that authorizes the state to warrantlessly wiretap all telephone and Internet traffic that crosses Sweden’s borders. It was passed by the Parliament of Sweden on June 18, 2008, by a vote of 143 to 138 and took effect on January 1, 2009.

In more detail, “FRA-law” is the common name for a new law as well as several modifications to existing laws, formally called Government proposal 2006/07:63 – Changes to defence intelligence activities. It was introduced as anti-terrorism legislation, and gives the government agency Swedish National Defence Radio Establishment (FRA, Swedish Försvarets radioanstalt) the right to conduct signals intelligence on – to intercept – all internet exchange points that exchange traffic that crosses Swedish borders, though experts argue that it is impossible to differentiate between international traffic and traffic between Swedes.

News reports from Sweden’s state broadcast network and other sources report that FRA have in fact been conducting eavesdropping on Swedish citizens for a decade. According to the Swedish National Defence Radio Establishment’s Director-General, Ingvar Åkesson, they destroy the data collected after eighteen months, but they confirm that they have, in fact, been collecting information not just on foreigners but also on Swedes as the presence of Swedish search terms used on the data would indicate.

Read more on Wikipedia

While it may be true that there is no established CCTV system in operation in Sweden, the number of stores, banks and government buildings that have their own private cameras (that can be accessed by government) is enough to create, if nothing else, the feeling that you’re constantly monitored. Meaning, it’s really no better then Britain. Who despite numerous reports by the Police has shown that the massive spread of the CCTV system in the UK has failed to slash crime.

Here are some selected articles detailing the already massive Big Brother system that exists in Sweden:

There is furthermore a massive network of surveillance cameras around the roads in Sweden, including speed cameras is not mentioned in the report.

The Goliath beast system of surveillance have most certainly established itself in Sweden already.

The only thing that can make the situation even worse is if the European project Indectbecomes a reality.

 

The European Union is developing a 21st century panopticon, a beast surveillance system that critics describe as “Orwellian,” “sinister,” and “positively chilling,” that would collate data from numerous sources, including surveillance cameras and personal computers, in order to detect “abnormal behavior” across the entire continent.

In a broader sense, this is part of the move towards creating a pan-European federal police force, where information and powers are shared as part of a centralized system. It is also a giant step towards the creation of a European CIA tasked not with keeping tabs on foreign enemies, but spying on its own population.

The surveillance system, known as Project Indect, promises to collect information by way of “continuous monitoring” of “web sites, discussion forums, usenet groups, file servers, p2p networks [and] individual computer systems”. It will also use CCTV feeds and other surveillance methods to develop models of “suspicious behavior” by analyzing the pitch of people’s voices (suggesting that private conversations will be recorded) as well as “the way their bodies move”.

Read more

Common RT sharpen up!

Sweden’s new wiretapping law ‘much worse than the Stasi’

By Rickard Falkvinge | thelocal.se

 

With just a week to go (published June 10th) before the Swedish parliament is expected to pass a controversial wiretapping law, Pirate Party leader Rickard Falkvinge urges people to do all they can to block the legislation.

On June 17th the Swedish parliament is set to vote on the introduction of a new “signal surveillance” law.

What the law means is that all telephone and internet operators will be forced to attach a large cable to the state’s supercomputer, where the state will be able to keep a record of everything said in telephone conversations, surfed on the web or written on the internet.

The law can best be described by the more explanatory term “general surveillance”. Instead of just criminal suspects having their phones tapped, now everyone will be tapped via their phones, emails, web surfing, faxes etc.

But the state won’t keep a record of everything. First it will scan all phone calls, emails and so on, in real time. Anything that is “considered interesting” on the basis of 250,000 search criteria, will be saved for further investigation.

All our phone calls, emails and surfing habits will be observed by Sweden’s National Defence Radio Establishment (Försvarets Radioanstalt – FRA), which is why the proposed legislation is known as the “FRA law”.

There are no courts involved, and the government and all its agencies – including the police and the security police – will be able to snoop around in the tapped phone and email correspondence of its citizens.

This is much, much worse than the East German Stasi, which was only capable of tapping a small sector of the population. This is also something that has been pointed out by German members of parliament with first-hand experience of the Stasi.

Proponents of the law say it “only concerns cross-border communications”. Unfortunately this is a bare-faced lie. Records of communications will be kept at 20 nodal points, strategically placed to capture all communications that cross Sweden’s borders. But any internal communications that happen to come into contact with any one of these nodes will also be analyzed by the state. Essentially this means that everyone will be affected since, for technical reasons, most phone calls and emails between two Swedes pass through another country.

Proponents say that “this has absolutely nothing to do with Swedes; FRA isn’t allowed to investigate Swedes if there is no substantial cause”. This is a dishonest formulation. Another way of saying exactly the same thing would be: “FRA may snoop on Swedes as part of this mass wiretapping scheme if certain criteria are met”. In fact, the entire statement is dishonest, since the legislation up for debate only concerns signal surveillance for the military. What these people don’t mention is that the FRA already carries out surveillance for the police using exactly the same staff and the same wiretapping network.

Proponents say that “only a very small amount of information will be listened to”, and refer to the pieces of information that will be sifted out for further examination. This is also a direct lie. Everything will be listened to. Whatever information is then selected for further examination is irrelevant; the violation of personal integrity occurs when the state gives itself access to its citizens’ private communications, not when one of the search terms it uses to filter the data happens to match.

Democracy is reliant on the transparency of power, not the transparency of citizens. All places where the opposite has been the case – where it has been impossible to examine the powers that be, while citizens lack any right to a private life – have been really nasty places to live.

Signal surveillance is supposed to protect us against external threats. In reality, however, it is the surveillance itself that constitutes a direct threat against Swedish democracy.

Aftonbladet has written about the law today (the first time old media have really contributed to the debate). Unfortunately they present the proponents’ propaganda as fact. Proponents of the law have shown themselves to be completely unreliable. On May 31st I put forward evidence [in Swedish] showing that they know they are breaking the constitution but they just don’t care.

The Pirate Party has long campaigned for the right to a private life. For example, we held a demonstration in central Stockholm recently demanding the right to civil liberties and for an end to all plans for general surveillance.

A campaign site has just gone online called stoppafralagen.nu (Stop the FRA law) with more information about this draconian piece of legislation.

It’s high time to get involved. Write to your local member of parliament, talk to friends and acquaintances about what’s happening. Anything. Just do something. Before it’s too late.

Article from: http://www.thelocal.se/article.php?ID=12334&print=true