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Re: Bericht des Civil Liberties Committee zu ECHELON

On 24 Jan 98 at 16:01, Christian Meyn wrote:

> Der Bericht des Civil Liberties Committee des EP zu ECHELON ist
> _nicht_ online erhaeltlich. Ich habe ihn bei dem zustaendigen MdEP
> per Post bestellt.

Ich habe heute 1 Exemplar per Post bekommen. Es handelt sich um eine 
Drucksache des EP, die mir ohne Vertraulichkeitsvorbehalt oder NDA 
zugegangen ist. Insgesamt sind es 100 Seiten, die sich nicht nur mit 
dem Thema ECHELON befassen. Der Report ist auch sonst ganz 
lesenswert; er umfasst folgende Themenbereiche:

- The Role & Function of Political Control Technologies

- Recent Trends and Innovations

- Developments in Surveillance Technologies

- Innovations in Crowd Control Weapons

- New Prison Control Systems

- Interrogation, Torture Techniques and Technologies

- Regulation of Horizontal Proliferation

- Further Research

Ich habe heute Nachmittag nur die Seiten eingescannt, die sich mit 
der ECHELON-Surveillance-Problematik befassen (Aus Zeitmangel habe 
ich nicht sehr intensiv auf Scanfehler ueberpruefen koennen):

------------ BEGIN QUOTED TEXT ------------------


Scientific and Technological Options Assessment

     Working Document (Consultation version)
                  PE 166 499

            Luxembourg, 06. Januar 1998


Editor: Mr. Dick Holdsworth

This is a working document. The current version is being circulated 
fur consultation. It is not an official publication of STOA or of the 
European Parliament.

This document does not necessarily represent the views of the 
European Parliament.


4.4 National & International Communications 
Interceptions Networks 

Modern communications systems are virtually 
transparent to the advanced interceptions 
equipment which can be used to listen in. 
Some systems even lend themselves to a dual 
role as a national interceptions network. 
For example the message switching system 
used on digital exchanges like System X in 
the UK supports an Integrated Services 
Digital Network (ISDN) Protocol. This 
allows digital devices, e.g. fax to share 
the system with existing lines. The ISDN 
subset is defined in their documents as 
"Signalling CCITT1-series interface for 
ISDN access. What is not widely known is 
that built in to the international CCITT 
protocol is the ability to take phones 'off 
hook' and listen into conversations 
occurring near the phone, without the user 
being aware that it is happening. (SGR 
Newsletter, No.4, 1993) This effectively 
means that a national dial up telephone 
tapping capacity is built into these 
systems from the start. (System X has been 
exported to Russia 8 China) Similarly, the 
digital technology required to pinpoint 
mobile phone users for incoming calls, 
means that all mobile phone users in a 
country when activated, are mini-tracking 
devices, giving their owners whereabouts at 
any time and stored in the company's 
computer for up to two years. Coupled with 
System X technology, this is a custom built 
mobile track, tail and tap system par 
excellence.(Sunday Telegraph, 2.2.97). 

Within Europe, all email, telephone and fax 
communications are routinely intercepted by 
the United States National Security Agency, 
transferring all target information from 
the European mainland via the strategic hub 
of London then by Satellite to Fort Meade 
in Maryland via the crucial hub at Menwith 
Hill in the North York Moors of the UK. The 
system was first uncovered in the 1970's by 
a group of researchers in the UK (Campbell, 
1981). The researchers used open sources 
but were subsequently arrested under 
Britain's Official Secrets legislation. The 
'ABC' trial that followed was a critical 
turning point in researcher's understanding 
both of the technology of political control 
and how it might be challenged by research 
on open sources.(See Aubrey, 1981 & Hooper 
1987) Other work on what is now known as 
Signals intelligence was undertaken by 
researchers such as James Bamford, which 
uncovered a billion dollar world wide 
interceptions network, which he nicknamed 
'Puzzle Palace. A recent work by Nicky 
Hager, Secret Power, (Hager,1996) provides 
the most comprehensive details to date of a 
project known as ECHELON. Hager interviewed 
more than 50 people concerned with 
intelligence to document a global 
surveillance system that stretches around 
the world to form a targeting system on all 
of the key Intelsat satellites used to 
convey most of the world's satellite phone 
calls, Internet, email, faxes and telexes. 
These sites are based at Sugar grove and 
Yakima, in the USA, at Waihopai in New 
Zealand, at Geraldton in Australia, Hong 
Kong, and Morwenstow in the UK. 

The ECHELON system forms part of the UKUSA 
system but unlike many of the electronic 
spy systems developed during the cold war, 
ECHELON is designed for primarily non-
military targets: governments, 
organisations and businesses in virtually 
every country. The ECHELON system works by 
indiscriminately intercepting very large 
quantities of communications and then 
siphoning out what is valuable using 
artificial intelligence aids like Memex. to 
find key words. Five nations share the 
results with the US as the senior partner 
under the UKUSA agreement of 1948, Britain, 
Canada, New Zealand and Australia are very 
much acting as subordinate information 
servicers. Each of the five centres supply 
"dictionaries" to the other four of 
keywords, Phrases, people and places to 
"tag" and the tagged intercept is forwarded 
straight to the requesting country. Whilst 
there is much information gathered about 
potential terrorists, there is a lot of 
economic intelligence, notably intensive 
monitoring of all the countries 
participating in the GATT negotiations. But 
Hager found that by far the main priorities 
of this system continued to be military and 
political intelligence applicable to their 
wider interests. Hager quotes from a 
"highly placed intelligence operatives" who 
spoke to the Observer in London. "We feel 
we can no longer remain silent regarding 
that which we regard to be gross 
malpractice and negligence within the 
establishment in which we operate." They 
gave as examples. GCHQ interception of 
three charities, including Amnesty 
International and Christian Aid. "At any 
time GCHQ is able to home in on their 
communications for a routine target 
request," the GCHQ source said. In the case 
of phone taps the procedure is known as 
Mantis. With telexes its called Mayfly. By 
keying in a code relating to third world 
aid, the source was able to demonstrate 
telex "fixes" on the three organisations. 
With no system of accountability, it is 
difficult to discover what criteria 
determine who is not a target. 

In February, The UK based research 
publication Statewatch reported that the EU 
had secretly agreed to set up an 
international telephone tapping network via 
a secret network of committees established 
under the "third pillar" of the Mastricht 
Treaty covering co-operation on law and 
order. \key points of the plan are outlined 
in a memorandum of understanding, signed by 
EU states in 1995.(ENFOPOL 112 10037/95 
25.10.95) which remains classified. 
According to a Guardian report (25.2.97) it 
reflects concern among European 
Intelligence agencies that modern 
technology will prevent them from tapping 
private communications. "EU countries it 
says, should agree on "international 
interception standards set at a level that 
would ensure encoding or scrambled words 
can be broken down by government agencies." 
Official reports say that the EU 
governments agreed to co-operate closely 
with the FBI in Washington. Yet earlier 
minutes of these meetings suggest that the 
original initiative came from Washington. 
According to Statewatch, network and 
service providers in the EU will be obliged 
to install "tappable" systems and to place 
under surveillance any person or group when 
served with an interception order. These 
plans have never been referred to any 
European government for scrutiny, nor one 
suspects to the Civil Liberties Committee 
of the European Parliament, despite the 
clear civil liberties issues raised by such 
an unaccountable system. We are told that 
the USA, Australia, Canada, Norway and Hong 
Kong are ready to sign up. All these bar 
Norway are parties to the ECHELON system 
and it is impossible to determine K there 
are not other agendas at work here. Nothing 
is said about finance of this system but a 
report produced by the German government 
estimates that the mobile phone part of the 
package alone will cost 4 billion D-marks. 

Statewatch concludes that "It is the 
interface of the ECHELON system and its 
potential development on phone calls 
combined with the standardisation of 
"tappable communications centres and 
equipment being sponsored by the EU and the 
USA which presents a truly global threat 
over which there are no legal or democratic 
controls."(Press release 25.2.97) 

Clearly, there needs to be a wide ranging 
debate on the significance of these 
proposals before further any further 
political or financial commitments are 
made. The following recommendations have 
that objective in mind.


(i) All surveillance technologies, 
operations and practices should be subject 
to procedures to ensure democratic 
accountability and there should be proper 
codes of practice to ensure redress if 
malpractice or abuse takes place. Explicit 
criteria should be agreed for deciding who 
should be targeted for surveillance and who 
should not, how such data is stored, 
processed and shared. Such criteria and 
associated codes of practice should be made 
publicity available. 

(ii) All requisite codes of practice should 
ensure that new surveillance technologies 
are brought within the appropriate data 
protection legislation. 

(iii) Given that data from most digital 
monitoring systems can be seemlessly 
edited, new guidance should be provided on 
what constitutes admissible evidence. This 
concern is particularly relevant to 
automatic identification systems which will 
need to take cognisance of the provisions 
of Article 15, of the 1995 European 
Directive on the Protection of Individuals 
and Processing of Personal Data. 

(iv) Regulations should be developed 
covering the provision of electronic 
bugging and tapping devices to private 
citizens and companies, so that their sale 
is governed by legal permission rather than 
self regulation. 

(v) Use of telephone interception by Member 
states should be subject to procedures of 
public accountability referred to in (i) 
above. Before any telephone interception 
takes place a warrant should be obtained in 
a manner prescribed by the relevant 
parliament. In most cases, law enforcement 
agencies will not be permitted to self-
authorise interception except in the most 
unusual of circumstances which should be 
reported back to the authorising authority 
at the earliest opportunity. 

(vi) Annual statistics on interception 
should be reported to each member states' 
parliament. These statistics should provide 
comprehensive details of the actual number 
of communication devices intercepted and 
data should be not be aggregated. (This is 
to avoid the statistics only identifying 
the number of warrants, issued whereas 
organisations under surveillance may have 
many hundreds of members, all of whose 
phones may be subject to interception). 

(vii) Technologies facilitating the 
automatic profiling and pattern analysis of 
telephone calls to establish friendship and 
contact networks should be subject to the 
same legal requirements as those for 
telephone interception and reported to the 
relevant member state parliament. 

(viii) The European Parliament should 
reject proposals from the United States for 
making private messages via the global 
communications network (Internet) 
accessible to US Intelligence Agencies. Nor 
should the Parliament agree to new 
expensive encryption controls without a 
wide ranging debate within the EU on the 
implications of such measures. These 
encompass the civil and human rights of 
European citizens and the commercial rights 
of companies to operate within the law, 
without unwarranted surveillance by 
intelligence agencies operating in 
conjunction with multinational competitors. 

(ix) The Committee should commission a more 
detailed report on the constitutional 
issues raised by the National Security 
Agency (NSA) facility to intercept all 
European telecommunications and the impact 
this supervisory capacity has on a) any 
existing constitutional safeguards protecting 
individuals or organisations from invasion 
of privacy such as those extant for example 
in Germany, b) the political, cultural and 
economic autonomy of European member 
states. This report should also cover the 
social and political implications of the 
EU/FBI proposals made to operate a global 
telecommunications surveillance network as 
discussed above. This report should also 
analyse the financial and constitutional 
implications of the proposals and provide 
an update of the work undertaken so far and 
the status of political approval. 

(x) Relevant committees of the European 
Parliament considering proposals for 
technologies which have civil liberties 
implications for example the 
Telecommunications Committee in regard to 
surveillance, should be required to forward 
all relevant policy proposals and reports 
to the Civil Liberties Committee for their 
observations in advance of any political or 
financial decisions on deployment being 

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Besonders die Ausfuehrungen zu evtl. Geheimabsprachen im Zusammenhang 
mit der "dritten Saeule" des Maastricht-Abkommens waren mir neu. Hier 
scheint noch etwas zu holen zu sein.