How the Government Spies on Your Cell Phone

The release of a secret U.S. government catalog of cell phone surveillance devices has revealed the names and abilities of dozens of surveillance tools previously unknown to the public. The catalog shines a light on well-known devices like the Stingray and DRT box, as well as new names like Cellbrite, Yellowstone, Blackfin, Maximus, Stargrazer, and Cyberhawk.

The Intercept reports:

Within the catalogue, the NSA is listed as the vendor of one device, while another was developed for use by the CIA, and another was developed for a special forces requirement. Nearly a third of the entries focus on equipment that seems to have never been described in public before.

Anti Media has reported extensively on the Stingray, the brand name of a popular cell-site simulator manufactured by the Harris Corporation. The Electronic Frontier Foundation describes Stingrays as “a brand name of an IMSI (International Mobile Subscriber Identity) Catcher targeted and sold to law enforcement. A Stingray works by masquerading as a cell phone tower – to which your mobile phone sends signals to every 7 to 15 seconds whether you are on a call or not – and tricks your phone into connecting to it.”

As a result, whoever is in possession of the Stingray can figure out who, when, and to where you are calling, the precise location of every device within the range, and with some devices, even capture the content of your conversations.

(keep reading at activistpost.com)