International Tech Companies Helped Gaddafi Spy on Libyans

Illustration for article titled International Tech Companies Helped Gaddafi Spy on Libyans

Muammar Gaddafi was a desperate man even before the civil war, and it shows more since the recent fall of Tripoli. The Wall Street Journal reports that Gaddafi had the Libyan people systematically spied upon online for years. And international tech companies helped.


Implicated in the report are tech companies from the U.S., Canada, Europe, and Africa, and all had a hand in Gaddafi's obsession with security by providing phone tapping, internet filtering, and email monitoring technologies. Those companies include Boeing's own Narus, which reportedly looked into adding their own internet filtering products to Libya's established monitoring operation, and Amesys, a French security company that provided Libya with Deep Packet Inspection software back in 2009, and intercepted messages from Hotmail, Yahoo, Gmail, MSN Messenger, and AIM.

The messages were tracked all the way up to February of this year, shortly before the uprising and when Gaddafi shut down the internet entirely. It's a shame the revolution did happen then. They could have kept on making their money. [WSJ]


Photo Credit: AP Photo/Rich Schultz

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I thought it was "Gadhafi". This guy has more ways to spell his name that Jon Smythe.