Post-Snowden, we’re more aware than ever of how closely we’re being watched. Amnesty International has decided to take action with a new tool that picks up government surveillance spyware on home computers. Detekt is believed to be the first public, open-source software of its kind.
“Governments are increasingly using dangerous and sophisticated technology that allows them to read activists and journalists’ private emails and remotely turn on their computer’s camera or microphone to secretly record their activities,” Marek Marczynski, Head of Military, Security and Police at Amnesty, said.
“Detekt is a simple tool that will alert activists to such intrusions so they can take action. It represents a strike back against governments who are using information obtained through surveillance to arbitrarily detain, illegally arrest and even torture human rights defenders and journalists.”
Developed by German security researcher Claudio Guarnieri, Detekt is currently only available for Windows, with a Mac version in the pipeline. If you install Detekt and it finds that your computer has been compromised, it’s recommended that you do not reconnect to the internet.
According to developers, “the attacker will likely have remote-control access of your computer, meaning they can view not only your files and emails but everything you type on your keyboard and could even switch on your webcam and microphone remotely”.
Governments have become au fait with technologies that can monitor Skype conversations, infiltrate webcams and read emails. Targets have included human rights activists, political dissidents and even journalists such as Citizenfour filmmaker Laura Poitras. But really, you could add absolutely everybody on to that list.
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