A Nokia-Seimens joint venture supplied the key surveillance tech to the Iranian government that is being used to spot and bust protestors, subjecting them to massive human rights violations and endangering their lives. Seimens says it's all Nokia's fault, and a spokesman says they did nothing wrong because spying on and torturing dissidents is legal in Iran.
Meanwhile, Cisco and every other "western" network tech company is busily selling spyware, censorware, and other surveillance crap to every repressive government in the world, and also raking in big bucks selling unconstitutional wiretap tools to the US government for use on domestic populations (including, it turns out, former presidents).
Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN), a joint venture between the Finnish cell-phone giant Nokia and German powerhouse Siemens, delivered what is known as a monitoring center to Irantelecom, Iran's state-owned telephone company.
A spokesman for NSN said the servers were sold for "lawful intercept functionality," a technical term used by the cell-phone industry to refer to law enforcement's ability to tap phones, read e-mails and surveil electronic data on communications networks.
In Iran, a country that frequently jails dissidents and where regime opponents rely heavily on Web-based communication with the outside world, a monitoring center that can archive these intercepts could provide a valuable tool to intensify repression…
Ben Roome, a spokesman for NSN, said, "We provide these systems to be used under the applicable laws in their countries and make sure we are abiding by U.N. and [European Union] export regulations and code of conduct. We provided the monitoring center to Irantelecom. We are not going to comment on the use of it. It is there to record lawful intercepts." …
"My first reaction is, 'Wow! Why do they do this?' Don't they know that this will be used against the people of Iran?" said Mr. Sazegara, who now lives in the United States.
"They facilitate a regime which easily violates human rights in Iran and the privacy of the people of Iran. They have facilitated the regime with a high technology that allows them to monitor every student activist, every women's rights activist, every labor activist and every ordinary perso
(Thanks, Bill and everyone else who suggested this!)