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[liberationtech] Azerbaijan wants to register mobile phones

Katy Pearce ucsb kpearce at umail.ucsb.edu
Mon Jan 9 07:16:24 PST 2012


Thanks Eric.

Will pass this to Ali.

Actually we find that there is cybersurveillance (documented in the
paper that was linked to above) in Azerbaijan.

I would expect the AZ government to use this new law to engage in more
cybersurveillance...

On Sun, Jan 8, 2012 at 5:53 AM, Eric S Johnson <crates at oneotaslopes.org> wrote:
> Within the context of our technology mentoring in the ISC, we advise folks
> in “risky” countries that mobile phones are, everywhere and always, a very
> high security risk. To the extent that contemporary software used by law
> enforcement agencies with access to MNOs’ log files can relatively easily
>
> ·        know all (turned-on) mobile devices (phones, SIMs)’ locations at
> all times, now and in the past,
>
> ·        store, read, and analyse all SMSs ever sent, and
>
> ·        enumerate identities and networks of people by looking at who’s
> talking to whom,
>
> the question of whether a SIM was purchased anonymously may be relatively
> irrelevant. Many countries already require all SIMs to be identified with an
> individual (say, Burma, Belarus, most EU countries (certainly France), or (I
> think) the US). (China has, since October 2010, required SIM sales to be
> identified with a person, but the rule’s observed in the breach.)
>
>
>
> And, to the extent that all MNOs’ operation depends on frequency licensing
> from the governments in whose jurisdiction they operate, all MNOs are, by
> definition, totally under those governments’ control, and will in any case
> eavesdrop on, and/or terminate, any and all clients’ use of their networks,
> upon gov’t demand.
>
>
>
> We think the key is to encourage folks to use internet instead of
> calls/SMSs, and to help make sure folks’ internet use is, to the maximum
> extent possible, encrypted. Certainly, that’s my modus operandii when in
> Azerbaijan, Burma, China, or Uzbekistan (all of which I’ve visited in the
> last six months).
>
>
>
> Katy, do you (or Ali) think the new AZ regulation will really materially
> change the degree of risk associated with activists’ use of mobile
> communications technologies? The key issue is probably more one of whether
> the gov’t of AZ is using the kinds of the software mentioned above, rather
> than whether SIMs can be procured anonymously.
>
>
>
> For the record, AFAIK, AZ doesn’t censor internet access at all, nor are
> there well-documented cases of cybersurveillance (although activists should
> always assume attempts are being made). However, starting in the second half
> of 2011, major independent Azerbaijani news-providing sites have found
> themselves under occasional DDOS attacks.
>
>
>
> Best,
>
> Eric
>
>
>
> From: liberationtech-bounces at lists.stanford.edu
> [mailto:liberationtech-bounces at lists.stanford.edu] On Behalf Of Katy Pearce
> ucsb
> Sent: Saturday, 07 January 2012 02:29
> To: liberationtech at lists.stanford.edu
> Subject: [liberationtech] Azerbaijan wants to register mobile phones
>
>
>
> http://blog.novruzov.az/2012/01/azerbaijan-to-register-all-mobile.html
>
> Blogger (and friend) Ali Zovruzov has translated a new law in Azerbaijan
> where all mobile phones will be registered to the government and the
> government will have the potential to shut off mobile communication.
>
> The measure bypassed the parliament and was approved directly by the Council
> of Ministers (which is sort of like the president's cabinet).
>
> On his blog some commenters don't think that this is a big deal, but...
>
> For some Azerbaijan context - it has been becoming more authoritarian and
> using technology to aid that:
> http://caucasusedition.net/analysis/%E2%80%9Cthis-is-what-can-happen-to-you%E2%80%9D-networked-authoritarianism-and-the-demonization-of-social-media-in-the-republic-of-azerbaijan/
>
>
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