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IPhone Tracking, Eavesdropping On Police And More: Tech Q A

While PGP was installed on the computer, Karim does not appear to have used it to encrypt and decrypt messages, perhaps out of paranoia about the capabilities of Western intelligence agencies, but instead used an unorthodox and complex technique based on cipher codes and passwords stored on Excel spreadsheets. His biggest slip-up was that he had saved this spreadsheet on his computer, allowing British police over a period of several months to decipher the messages stored on his external hard drive and use them as evidence against him. The computer had not been wiped in time. Booting a separate operating system, such as the aforementioned Tails, which the Islamic State is now encouraging their operatives to use, would have prevented this mistake.[26]

iPhone tracking, eavesdropping on police and more: Tech Q A


French police believe the Paris attackers used encryption in some of their communication, based on data collected from an abandoned Samsung phone they recovered outside the Bataclan concert hall after the attack. The Telegram app had been downloaded onto the phone seven hours before the attacks. No recovered content from the messaging app is mentioned in the French police documents, suggesting the technology allowed them to cover their tracks successfully and possibly by using the self-destruct feature within Telegram. Paris prosecutor Francois Mollins stated after the attacks that French investigators often encountered Telegram in their investigations and cannot penetrate its encryption.[28]

[b] Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) is the standard security technology that is used for creating an encrypted link between a web server and internet applications such as browsers and chat apps. This prevents anyone who is eavesdropping on the network from reading the original, unencrypted data. Only those on either end of the SSL link can read the data.

Consistent with the calls to defund the police by Black-led DC-based organizers, we testified that the District needs a new approach to public safety, including a significant reduction in taxpayer spending on police surveillance technologies.


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