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English
Talk
Intermediate
Watching the Watchers: Building a Sousveillance State

Short thesis

Secret surveillance programs have metadata too. The same people and companies that operate secret surveillance programs also publish details about their work on the open internet. We can use this data to watch the watchers.

Description

“Proficient in Microsoft Word and Xkeyscore” and similar phrases are surprisingly common on LinkedIn profiles. NSA contractors, military, and others involved in the surveillance state post seemingly coded and harmless details about their work in job listings, social media, and other open websites. But this information provides useful metadata that can be used to understand the function of secret programs and map the surveillance state.

Transparency Toolkit has been building open source tools to collect and analyze this open source intelligence. This talk discusses how we can use these data sources and tools to build a sousveillance state that holds the surveillance state accountable.