The Ecuadorian Foreign Minister has claimed that a hidden listening device was found in his country’s embassy during his visit in London last month.
During a press conference yesterday in Ecuador’s capital Quito,Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino Aroca said a bug was found during the regular security check by the Ecuadorian intelligence for the embassy in the UK.
The microphone was found in the office of ambassador Ana Alban. Patino elaborated:
“We immediately conducted an investigation to find the source and I will release our result at tomorrow’s press conference including the source of the device, who was using it and which department installed it.”
Patino hopes that relevant countries or organizations can offer a reasonable explanation for the hidden device. He denied that the device had anything to do with the US surveillance program PRISM or Edward Snowden.
Ecuador is one of the countries that offered Snowden political asylum.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, whose organization leaked a vast trove of diplomatic documents and Iraq/Afghanistan war logs a few years ago, has been staying in the Ecuadorian embassy in London for the past year.
Britain is refusing to grant Assange safe passage out of the embassy so he can travel to Ecuador.
Russian authorities have captured a supposed underground CIA spy who was plotting to recruit a Russian intelligence officer to work with the US.
Ryan Folger, a diplomat working at the American embassy, was detained carrying a large sum of cash, an instruction manual for turning the Russian intelligence officer, and some ‘spy’ gear: wigs, microphone, sunglasses, a Moscow atlas, a compass, two knives and a BIC lighter.
The letter for the Russian officer from Folger reads:
Folger was handed over to the US embassy early this morning.
This event has certainly put un-needed stress on Russian-American relations, which is a shame after the recent improvement we had been seeing after Secretary Kerry visited earlier this month.
How do you think this event will affect Russian-American relations?
In a vote of 73 to 23, the U.S. Senate voted for approval warrant-less surveillance of American citizens for the next 5 years.
The approval means that we’ll be living with Bush-esque spy laws for another half decade. Under the guise of anti-terrorism, government agencies can now access your phone, texts, and email accounts sans warrant.
We spoke on a vote for the similar bill just last month, after Congressmen Leahy re-wrote it to allow law enforcement unlimited access to data without a warrant. That bill has since been changed, but it doesn’t seem to matter now that the FISA Amendments Act has been re-authorized.
Essentially it works like this, the law allows the government to get secret FISA court-orders that do no require probably cause for any calls going to and from overseas. The communications can be anything that falls under “foreign intelligence information”. A FISA order can be created en masse, meaning hundreds of Americans can be monitored at once.
The bill will now be sent to President Obama to be finalized. It’s most likely the President will sign the bill, as he has been vocally supportive of the legislation.
What do you think about this bill? Is it just for our protection or is it being used to watch us big brother style? Let us know what you think in the comments below!
Remember that book 1984, the one you read in elementary school that talked about the future and how to prepare for a dystopian world that was bound to happen in the 1980s? Then you remember it was the 90s when you read it, and you probably have nothing to worry about … at least for now!
Anyway, the whole “Big Brother is watching you” idea may actually become an everyday thing. Verizon Wirelessjust patented a DVR that can watch and listen to everything that happens in your living room!
I’m going to be saying “Cyber” a lot today. I’m as upset about it as you are. But there’s something awesome going down at the University of Tulsa. Basically, they’ve created themselves a spy factory. Digital spy. Ugh. Yes. Cyberspy. Students are being taught to how to be awesome spies and basically try to spy on each other as training.