Petition Filled Against FinFisher’s Surveillance Deployment in Pakistan

cyber-surveillance

The alleged use of FinFisher, a controversial surveillance technology, in Pakistan has been challenged in the Lahore High court.

FinFisher, also known as FinSpy, is a trojan spyware software developed and marketed by the UK/German company Gamma Group.

The petition was filed by Bytes for All chairman Shahzad Ahmad who said that FinFisher software was being used to monitor and obtain information from citizens through their computers and hence their fundamental right to privacy was in danger.

His counsel, Yasser Latif Hamdani, submitted a recent public report, issued on April 30, 2013, by the international watchdog Citizen Lab, which indicated that Pakistan was one of the 36 countries that had FinFisher command and control systems, reported a local English newspaper.

It was also revealed that the Pakistan Telecommunications Authority (PTA) had ownership of the server operating FinFisher in the country.

This primarily means that either an individual from within the government was operating the FinFisher software or that the government as a whole has complete knowledge of such activities.

FinFisher, on its website, boasts that this software is an innovative cyber tool to target devices and extract valuable intelligence including Passwords, Files, Device information, and other valuable material.

Mr. Hamdani said that such surveillance software undermine the privacy of Pakistani citizens and that it is a tool deployed by repressive regimes.

He requested the court to put an immediate halt to the operations of FinFisher in Pakistan by seizing the equipment used to collect data.

Mr. Hamdani also asked the court to question the Ministry of Information on this matter asking who had authorised the operations of a FinFisher Command and Control server in Pakistan.

FinFisher has previously been used in Egypt and other parts of the world by various governments to repress political activity.


  • Shahid Saleem

    Remember, I warned you repeatedly about this.

    three years ago imgur .com/j4oZHvr
    two years ago imgur .com/Msipkne

    You think the government is setting up such filtration and monitoring systems for your wellbeing and security? WHAT A JOKE. They only want better ways to CONTROL you.

    And admin is the worst offender here for publicly supporting such systems that can be (and ARE) used against us, the ordinary citizens of Pakistan. yet at the same time we are supposed to be upset by NSA watching our traffic. What irony.

    • PeeDroid MiNi L100

      What A Medal For That, Your Puss Axx Go Tell Us What They Going To Do, But Your Puss Axx Never Told Us What We Should Do To Prevent It.. Oh Wait, We Can’t Do Nothing About It.
      This Is Pakistan!!

      • Shahid Saleem

        People like you made fun of me when I said it. Now you’re upset that I didn’t give you a solution? I DID GIVE A SOLUTION.

        The solution was in front of you: fight attempts to censor internet. And instead you made fun of me for being a pornlover or something idiotic.

        Who’s suffering now? All of us. Who got us into this state? YOU.

        • PeeDroid MiNi L100

          Don’t You Dare Put The Blame On Me You FeBowBow!!

  • Inam

    If you are online, you are exposed already.
    End of story.

    • Shahid Saleem

      And yet, TTP can openly use social media and no one tries to stops them. But write one article against the military and your site is banned and they come after you.

      • Inam

        Why write against army?

        • Shahid Saleem

          Rolling stone magazine website was blocked for years all because of one article about the army. And it was not even false article.

          • Inam

            Then following this analogy, every channel & every newspaper should be blocked nowadays.

            • Shahid Saleem

              Put another way, why is promotion of TTP acceptable but not criticism of army?

              Why with all the ISI filtering which happens thanks to PTA giving up control, can they not find and stop TTP and other terrorists?

              Why are Hafiz Saeed and others living openly?

              • Inam

                You are asking 2 different questions & merging’em into 1.

                1. You are asking for reasons of ISI filtering, (Idk what that means)
                2. You are questioning judicial performance in regards of TTP & other Extremist leaders.

                What do you want to say guy?

                • Shahid Saleem

                  The PTA is not filtering our internet traffic. As of last year, ISI is filtering our traffic. This was widely reported in the media and also by ISPAK ISP association (they wrote a public letter about it).

                  I am not questioning JUDICIAL performance. People who spread HATRED by using Islam for their ends (like TTP and Hafiz Saeed and their own “brand” of sharia that allows for killing innocent women and children with bombs) — they have ONLINE sites and presences that are NOT being blocked. Yet, one article about military spending causes rolling stone website to be banned for over two years (open now).

                  • Inam

                    I don’t see the point you are making. I see tens of articles on tribune & others AGAINST Armed Forces & ISI on a daily basis. No one is being banned here buddy. TTP should be banned as much as all these pro-TTP so called “Daanishwar”.

                    Jis k pass speaker/camera hai, wo sahafi hai yahan pr, that’s it.

        • PPak

          cause that’s what he’s paid for
          he wont write a single word against US or even Indians ;)

          • Inam

            Or TTP :P

            • Shahid Saleem

              Here it is for you: put a bullet through the heart of all TTP personall.

              Satisfied? Your turn.

              • ppak

                Na Na Na its not that easy,
                Now Lets here it for the US and Indians too !!!

                • Inam

                  Hahaha Good one. Let him speak about what he thinks on “Aman ki Asha!” :P

                • Shahid Saleem

                  I will go even further: Put a bullet through the heart of drone supporters who don’t care about civilians. Problem with that statement? THERE ARE PLENTY OF PEOPLE IN PAKISTAN WHO SUPPORT DRONES.

                  Satisfied? Your turn.

                  Seriously speaking,

                  Between the time I go out from home in the morning til I return at night, there is ZERO possibility that I will be attacked by someone from US or India. There is (as over 30,000 Pakistani souls have found) a much much greater percentage that someone from TTP or their “friends” will try to kill me. Even if it just a random attack, it’s a great high probability.

                  Of course the situation is different in KPK and near border with Afghanistan (because of drones) or in our side of Kashmir near the border with India (because of shelling and firings from both sides) but most of the people killed by TTP and their “friends” do didn’t live in those areas.

                • Shahid Saleem

                  Still waiting for your turn, coward.

                  • ppak

                    u r a Lunatic for real
                    do u seriously think that ur lots of ANGREZEE and pointless garbage will confuse any of us
                    i said lets hear some words against US and Indians and what we got PUT A BULLET…..DRONE SUPPORTERS and even in that u some how dragged PAKISTANIS. HAHAHAHA and then u started trash talking about how ur life is threatened from TTP. Do u think all of us so NAIVE to believe that CRAP
                    Every time u make ur self more VISIBLE by responding with even more stupid comments

                    • Shahid Saleem

                      Fill in the blanks HONESTLY:

                      1 Number of Pakistanis killed by Indians in last 12 years: ____
                      2 Number of Pakistanis killed by US in last 12 years: ____

                      3 Number of Pakistanis killed by TTP & friends in last 12 years: ____

                      And then honestly tell me my worries are wrong.

                      Here, I will start you with the answer to #3: over 30,000.

                      Who’s the lunatic and who’s the ignorant fool???

                    • Shahid Saleem

                      Also there is NO CONFUSING what I said three years ago and what has happened.

                      Exactly as I predicted.

                      A change brought about by people like you. You are so confused that a story about PAKISTANIS SPYING ON PAKISTANIS leads you to ask me about Indians and US. Bhai what do Indians and US have to do with our government spying on us???

                    • ppak

                      It was u who dragged PAK ARMY into this discussion
                      scroll up and see ur Bull. $h1t above
                      “And yet, TTP ……….against the military and your site is banned and
                      they come after you”
                      and then u wonder y we dragged US and Indians into it HAH
                      Strangely enough u have a soft corner when US does the same and u even advocate their deeds but when PAK does it it scare the Sh1t out of ya, and i wonder WHY ? ;) and then all can come up with that rotten “GOVT trying to oppress criticism” and “exploitation of privacy” logics
                      I donot favor spying in any form but fools like u make me believe that our “corrupt” govt should do it and give ur kind a “hard beating”
                      and on top of that u stray away towards “who has killed how many and ur life is endangered by whom” PAAAAALEEEEEEZZZZ
                      gimme a break dude fyi no one was discussing that

                    • Shahid Saleem

                      I did not drag army into anything you silly fool.

                      I said a site was banned for writing the truth about the army. The article on rolling stone was about army’s spending. I REPORTED A FACT THAT OCCURRED.

                      And that filtering/banning technology only exists because people WANTED BEGGED for it. They even hacked PTA websites saying ban sites. They even wrote letters to our illogical CJP. These idiots thought the filtering would only keep their internet clean from sites and junk, they didn’t worry that legitimate issues and sites will be monitoried and filtered.

                      And with that “mandate” the PTA and ISI are now watching everything you do online. I warned you against it three years ago. Today you are arguing with me about army and USA and India and whatever instead of addressing the issue.

                      Who has derailed the conversation? People like you commenting for no reason.

  • Fraz

    You all are living in fools heaven and dreaming about your rights while surfing.
    There are millions of our country men who do not have the basic health facilities,education , clean water ,no security and threats of elimination. It will be better to rise and fight for basic needs.

    • Shahid Saleem

      I didn’t vote for PPP or PML-N or JI or JUI or whatever. I voted AGAINST them. A pity lots of people couldn’t manage that.

      I cared. The majority did not.

    • Ronin

      Yeah and Freedom is not basic right, how true

  • Eli Ehsan

    Oh Danggit!! so they’ve been seeing all those NARGAS & DEEDAR videos stored in applied physics folder on my laptop…. :/