By Dark Politricks
One of the important news stories of the day has been the announcement that Microsoft is buying out Skype the Voice over IP phone service that allows people to talk to each other across the world for free for £5.2bn or $8.5bn.
So we have a company with known links to the USA security services, that has backdoors built into all it’s machines for the NSA buying up one of the largest communication systems that people use over the Internet.
If I were a conspiracy theorist just theorising for the fun of it I might presume that the fact that Microsoft is buying a loss making company could be more to do with it’s links with US intelligence than any business model envisioned by the merger.
We already know that all our emails and Internet searches are logged and tracked by Google and other ISP’s so that targeted advertising can be delivered to you but even worse than that is Echelon which is used by the USA, UK, Canada and Australia to spy on as many communications as possible.
“Echelon is perhaps the most powerful intelligence gathering organization in the world.” It is believed that “Echelon” intercepts more than 3 billion communications everyday, including telephone calls, Email messages, Internet downloads and satellite transmissions. “The Echelon system gathers all of these transmissions indiscriminately, then distills the information that is most heavily desired through artificial intelligence programs. Some sources have claimed that Echelon sifts through an estimated 90 per cent of all Internet traffic,” according to echelonwatch.org.”
So currently all phone calls and emails are routed through Echelon systems that pick out keywords and phrases looking for trigger words that might infer “terrorist activity”. We also know that all bank transactions are now being handed over by the EU to the USA for signs of “irregular transfer activities” in the hope of catching terrorists through their money transfers but again we plebs only found out after the fact by accident and then after a little bitch and moan as per usual we acquiesced to US demands.
In the spring of 2006, an outraged Europe discovered that the American intelligence services, including the CIA and other agencies, had been accessing European banking data illegally via the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication.
After 9.11 … the CIA, the FBI, the US government and the major banks all put pressure on SWIFT until the society “voluntarily” began to hand over millions of pieces of data. They passed on such information as the names of the principal actors in transactions, such as the payer and payee, as well as addresses, identification document numbers, account numbers, amounts and the designated purposes for the money. Justification for the breach of banking privacy came from Washington, which said that it was imperative to dry up sources of terrorist funding. And European leaders — some of whom were informed throughout by SWIFT about what was going on — simply accepted this.
So as well as all the millions of CCTV cameras that follow us each day, the phones in your pocket tracking your every move and any communication over telephone or email we could now well have a NSA front company i.e Microsoft buying up one of the biggest tools people use for talking to each other onlines.
I know this is just pure conspiracy theorising and why not its 5.00am in the morning and I feel like throwing one out into the blogosphere to see if it catches on, but what if the US government thought to itself – why bother going to all the hassle in creating back doors, asking companies for encryption keys and ISP’s to keep log files for years when instead they can just use their massive front companies Google and Microsoft to just buy up the technology and install front doors instead.
Why go through all the pain of trying to pass new bills through Congress, getting extensions to the hated PATRIOT Act and all that malarkey when you can just hook your new cool spyware / application into your existing network of super computers that spend all day sifting through the trillions of bytes worth of data looking for patterns of behaviour or conversations of interest to investigate further.
When you look at it this way the cost of a few billion suddenly doesn’t seem too much to have access to all the Skype traffic without all the hassle. Just throw in a few switches into the applications the users have to use to connect to each other and hey presto and easily recorded and logged phone call with all the data sent to Langley oops I mean Redmond to sit on some huge database for analysis.
Using Google’s new auto translate tools you don’t even have to pay for all those translators to make sense of the Urdu and Pashtun being chatted back and forth by all those nasty evil cave dwelling VOIP using al-Qaeda operatives.
Just a thought…