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Lawsuit alleges that TPLF Ethiopian tyrannic regime used private technology to monitor Internet communications of dissident-linked American. Wayyaaneen Lammii Ameerikaa tokko waan basaasteef himatamte. July 15, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Censorship, Internet Freedom.
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“We caught the Ethiopian government red-handed,” Cardozo said.

Ethiopia spying case casts spotlight on cyber surveillance in US

Lawsuit alleges that Addis Ababa used private technology to monitor Internet communications of dissident-linked American

A first-of-its kind lawsuit that resumes in a U.S. District Court on Tuesday has drawn attention to the private surveillance-technology industry as a potential enabler of spying on Americans. The case involves a U.S. citizen who alleges that “clandestine computer programs” assumed “what amounts to complete control” over his personal computer and relayed copies of his electronic activity — including Skype calls, Internet searches and emails — to the Ethiopian government.

Kidane — the pseudonym under which the complainant is known in the case to protect his family from retribution — says his computer was monitored by spyware placed on his computer while he was living in the United States. He is an Ethiopian-born naturalized U.S. citizen who sought asylum in the U.S., where he has lived for more than two decades. His case is being closely watched by activists and civil liberties campaigners because of its potential implications for domestic cybersurveillance by security agencies such as the National Security Agency (NSA).

A victory for Kidane “would be a clear statement from a U.S court to say that wiretapping without court authorization is illegal, no matter who does it. And yes, absolutely that would have implications for the NSA,” said his legal counsel, Nate Cardozo, a staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

“We know that the NSA engages in full content wiretapping … without a court order authorizing it,” he added. “That conduct is simply illegal, and I think a U.S. court order holding Ethiopia responsible for doing the same thing but on a much smaller scale here hopefully would at least raise some eyebrows at the NSA.”

The suit alleges that FinSpy, an intrusion and surveillance program, was transmitted by a Microsoft Word document attachment sent to Kidane’s computer via email by or on behalf of the Ethiopian government. It began targeting Kidane’s machine in late October 2012.

Ethiopia was accused of deploying FinSpy in a March 2013 report by Citizen Lab, an organization that studies surveillance, on the basis of the IP address from which the software was transmitted. The attack on Kidane’s computer was found to have originated from the same server. Days after the Citizen Lab report appeared, the Ethiopian government tried to shut down FinSpy on Kidane’s computer, Cardozo alleged. However, there was a malfunction, and traces of the software remained on his client’s machine.

“We caught the Ethiopian government red-handed,” Cardozo said.

Kidane is seeking damages and an acknowledgment from the Ethiopian government that it acted outside the law. Ethiopia has stated in court documents that “computer addresses can be and are easily [faked],” but it has not denied the allegations. It has argued that because it is a foreign sovereign power, a U.S. court lacks jurisdiction to hear the case.

Freedom House reported last year that the Ethiopian government has upped its efforts to target dissidents with surveillance malware. U.K.-based Ethiopian opposition figure Tadesse Kersmo also alleges his computer was infected with FinSpy, in a criminal complaint filed on his behalf by Privacy International, a U.K.-based nonprofit.

FinSpy’s capabilities

FinSpy can pull users’ passwords from Internet browsers and emails. It can record telephone calls and audio from a computer microphone, turn on a webcam and save keystrokes and text messages, according to company documents released via WikiLeaks. The software can extract files from a hard disk, poach deleted files and take screen shots of a computer screen.

It is designed to evade detection and can bypass 40 anti-virus systems, according to the leaked company files.

The spyware tool is a part of the FinFisher product suite formerly under the umbrella of the U.K.-based Gamma Group, which, according to its website, provides “advanced technical surveillance, monitoring solutions and advanced government training.”

The FinFisher company, based in Munich, maintains that the products are sold to “government agencies only” and that the spyware is designed to target individuals and is not to intended for mass surveillance.

But the British government has criticized the group. Gamma lacks “due diligence processes that would protect against abusive use of its products,” according a U.K. government report.

Gamma does not say to which countries it has sent products, and it did not respond to an Al Jazeera query.

Even if the manufacturer’s intent is that FinSpy be used lawfully, human rights groups say the technology has been used to facilitate abuses. FinFisher command and control servers are said to be active in some three dozen countries, including Brunei, Nigeria, Pakistan, Qatar, Romania, Turkey, Turkmenistan and the United Arab Emirates, according to 2013 report by Citizen Lab.

Some of those countries have come under fire for suppressing political dissent. A document appearing to show a contract with FinFisher was allegedly found in the offices of Egypt’s secret police in 2011.

Bahraini authorities have been accused of using it to target three Bahraini activists who have been granted asylum in the United Kingdom. And the Lahore High Court is set to hear a case about the use of the spyware in Pakistan. The suit alleges that the government indiscriminately spied on its citizens with the help of the FinFisher technology.

But for many experts, the issue goes beyond just one company, as the surveillance industry has swelled to asector worth some $5 billion a year. Earlier this year, the European Union implemented export controls on spyware technology.

But laws in many other countries governing the use of surveillance have not kept up with its rapid development and global reach. “The lawful interception of communications must be performed with proper legal authorization, but what this authorization looks like varies across jurisdictions,” said Privacy International.

“Often, laws are vague and broadly interpreted, courts authorize and review surveillance in secret, and individuals are monitored surreptitiously and are not notified that they were placed under surveillance,” the group said.

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Itoophiyaan,Lammii Ameerikaa tokko waan basaasteef himatamte.

(OMN:Oduu Adol.15,2015) Himannaa Mootummaa Itoophiyaa irratti lammii Ameerikaa basaasuun banamee tureef Abukaattoon Motummaa Itoophiyaa kibxata kana mana murtitti dhihaachuun deebii kennan.
Lammiin Ameerikaa dhalootaan Itoophiyaa ta’e bara darbe Motummaan Itoophiyaa moosaajji basaasaatti fayyadamuun Komputera isaa akka basaasaa ture beeksisuun himannaa bannnee ture.

Dhaababnnni Elektiroonik Firoonteerri jedhamu lammii Amerikaa dhalootaan Itoophiyaa ta’e maqaa Kidaanee jedhamuun beekamu bakka bu’uun bara 2014 Mootummaa Itoophiyaa irratti himata dhiheesseera.

Akka himata Motummaa Itoophiyaa irratti baname kanaatti,Moootummaan Itoophiyaa Moosajjii yoonkaan Spyware dhoksaa fayyadamuun koomputera lammii Ameerikaa dhalotaan Itoophiyaa ta’e maqaa kidaanee jedhamuun beekamu cabseera bilbila dhuunfaa isaa dhoksee waraabeera akkasumas itti fayyadama Koompuutera maatii isa hundaa torbanootaaf to’ateera jedha.

Dhaababanni Elekiroonk Firoonteer namicha kana bakka bu’ee nageenya maatii isaa Ameerikaa fi Itoophiyaa jiraniif jecha maqaa Kidaanee jedhamutti akka fayyadamu Mana Murtii Fedralaa Ameerikaa irraa iyyama argatteera.

Abuukaatoon Mootummaa Itoophiyaa Ameerikaa jiran fi Mana Murtii sanatti dhihaatan akka jedhanitti Manni Murtii Ameerikaa dhimma kana falmisiisuuf mirga hin qabu waan ta’eef himanni kun haqamuu qaba jechuun gaafatan.

Abuukaatoon Dhaabbata Elektirronik Firoonteer Nate Cardozo gama isaaniin Mootummaa Itoophiyaa basasaa seeraan ala gaggeeseef fuula dura mana murtitti gaafatamuu qaba jechuun falman.

Vaayiraasiin basasaa Dhaabbanni Elektiroonik Firiinteer Faawundeshin komputera Obbo Kidaanee irratti arge kun qaama duula Motummaan Itoophiyaan mormitoota isaa fi gaazexxesitootaa irratti gochaa jiruu ti jedhameera.

Sooftweeriin kun sagnataa FinSpy fi sooftweerii basaasaa kaampaanii Gamma Group jedhamuun Mootummotatti gurguramuu dha.

Oddeeffannoon torbe darbe dhoksaan bahe akka mullisuttis// kaampaaniin Hacking Team jedhamu sooftii weerii basaasaa doolara Miliyoona tokkoon akka Mootummaa Itoophiyaatti gurguraree fi Mootummaan Itoophiyaa immoo gaazexesitootaa fi mormitoota akka ittiin basaasu beeksiseera.

Mootummaan Itoophiyaa gaazexeessitoota miidiyaa dhuunfaa irra hojjetan fi biyya irraa baqatanii biyya alaa jiraatan irratti haleellaa saayberii dhaqqabsiisuudhaan lammiin biyyattii odeeffannoo akka hinarganne godha jechuudhaan dhaabbanni qorannoo intarneetii magaalaa Toroontoo Citizen Lab jedhamu mootummaa Itoophiyaa yakkee tureera.

Alamaayyoo Qannaatu gabaase.


UNPO’s XII General Assembly Adopts Oromo Resolution July 15, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Africa, OLF, Oromia, Oromiyaa, Oromo, Oromo Nation, Self determination, UNPO.
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Oromia map (green)

Oromia map (green)


On 3 July 2015, representatives of the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) presented their resolution to UNPO’s XII General Assembly, affirming their abhorrence of the current situation for Oromo people in Ethiopia, and expressing their desire for more genuine democracy, greater involvement from the international community, and an end to state-sponsored violence. The UNPO adopted the resolution, thus affirming its support for the Oromo’s demands for justice and equality.

Below is the full text of the resolution:


The Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) was established in 1973/1974 by Oromo nationalists in the heart of Oromia, Finfinne (Addis Ababa) to exercise the Oromo people’s inalienable right to national self-determination, to terminate a century of oppression and exploitation, and to form the independent republic of Oromia, or where possible, a political union with other peoples based on equality, respect for mutual interests and the principle of voluntary association. Today OLF has grown and…

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