Meet more western companies that arm dictators and torturers with network spyware

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16 Responses to “Meet more western companies that arm dictators and torturers with network spyware”

  1. SaberUK says:

    “companies that had been caught selling network spying tools to despotic regimes around the world”

    That’s a bit dramatic isn’t it? They sell a product to their customers. It is none of their business what their customers do with said product.

    At the end of the day, they have to eat too.

    • Tynam says:

       I hope you’re being ironic here.  

      If you create a tool that’s only useful for harassing citizens en masse, market it to despots, and then sell it to a customer currently engaged in the mass murder of its own citizens, then yes, it *is* their business what their customers do. This isn’t even like arms sales; these companies build features into the systems that are only useful to authoritarians and despots.

      At the end of the day, if the only possible way they can eat is by helping hurt and kill innocents, it’s better for us all if they don’t actually get to.

    • Antinous / Moderator says:

      They sell a product to their customers. It is none of their business what their customers do with said product.

      Thanks for the opinion from the completely amoral perspective. Next!

    • loroferoz says:

      Yeah, there’s people who sell explosives, detonators, automatic weapons and such. 

      It’s not the dealer’s business if the buyer has a clearly expressed intention to kidnap/murder employees/owners or blow up the offices of certain companies providing all kinds of spyware to tyrants. Not at all, dears. Spot the fallacy?It gets an order of magnitude bigger once you realize that they don’t just sell software in boxes. They install hardware/software to specification and provide technical support and training all the way through. Even shady arms’ dealers try to avoid participating in the criminal uses of their wares. These people actually perform demonstrations and can be said to “pull the trigger”.  They are accomplices through and through, if not as guilty as the customers.

    • manicbassman says:

       This corporate behaviour is on a par with that of IBM who helped the Nazis set up their system for controlling and schedulling the trains to the concentration camps… they knew what those systems were being used for…

      and the “they have to eat” excuse doesn’t excuse the workers in the chemical works that manufactured the nerve gas used in the concentration camps and also by the guards of same camps…

      Orders are orders was not accepted as an excuse by the Nuremburg War Crimes Trials…

      The “if we didn’t sell it to them then somebody else will” excuse doesn’t hold water either…

      and hopefully, one day there will be reckoning where the owners, CEOs and other
      high ups in these corporations also have to face the music for their crimes against humanity, which is what this network spyware stuff amounts to…

      If you work for one of these companies or are a shareholder, then take a good look at yourself in the mirror and consider the stain on your soul for aiding these crimes…

  2. Lemoutan says:

    It’s nothing personal. It’s just business.

    If it isn’t actually illegal then what can be done about it, other than get it made illegal?

    • outercow says:

      Correct, because public outcries over the actions of companies has never in the history of the universe brought about any social good.

      • Lemoutan says:

        Assuming you’re being irono-sarky, I daresay most here would agree that your ‘claim’ is false. If no irony was intended, then we could waste some time on a bit of (yes it has, no it hasn’t)*ry – but let’s not.

        But if we do agree on the possibility of social good by public outcry, then may I confirm that your challenge is that such activity being made illegal is not a way forward?

    • teapot says:

      There are lots of things you can do that are immoral but not illegal. That doesn’t mean you should do them.

      Anyone who makes money from the suffering of innocents deserves suffering themselves. The reason EFF is doing this reporting is because traditional journalists, through laziness or ignorance, are failing to do their job on this topic. How are people supposed to know where to direct their anger if the companies that make these products do so in secret?

      • Lemoutan says:

        There are lots of things you can do that are immoral but not illegal. That doesn’t mean you should do them.

        But the fact that we agree on this doesn’t help. Immorality is of limited utility in an international multifaith multiculture community where the nuances of morality are conditioned by local influences and tradition. All you’ve got is (in this case, international) law.

        Anyone who makes money from the suffering of innocents deserves suffering themselves.

        You may wish it, but that don’t make it so. People get away with this all the time, regardless of how you (or I) might feel about it.

        The reason EFF is doing this reporting is because traditional journalists, through laziness or ignorance, are failing to do their job on this topic.

        Maybe. I’ve long ago given up trying to infer the mental states or motives of others from what they say, but it’s at least possible that all of those traditional journalists are lazy and ignorant, so I guess I’m in no superior position to argue the point.

        How are people supposed to know where to direct their anger if the companies that make these products do so in secret?

        Now that is a great question! I don’t know the answer. And that’s without having to consider the unknown amount of secret shit that even the EFF and its like don’t know about.

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