POLICE FORCES AROUND the world have increasingly used hacking tools to identify and track protesters, expose political dissidents’ secrets, and turn activists’ computers and phones into inescapable eavesdropping bugs. Now, new clues in a case in India connect law enforcement to a hacking campaign that used those tools to go an appalling step further: planting false incriminating files on targets’ computers that the same police then used as grounds to arrest and jail them.
More than a year ago, forensic analysts revealed that unidentified hackers fabricated evidence on the computers of at least two activists arrested in Pune, India, in 2018, both of whom have languished in jail and, along with 13 others, face terrorism charges. Researchers at security firm SentinelOne and nonprofits Citizen Lab and Amnesty International have since linked that evidence fabrication to a broader hacking operation that targeted hundreds of individuals over nearly a decade, using phishing emails to infect targeted computers with spyware, as well as smartphone hacking tools sold by the Israeli hacking contractor NSO Group. But only now have SentinelOne’s researchers revealed ties between the hackers and a government entity: none other than the very same Indian police agency in the city of Pune that arrested multiple activists based on the fabricated evidence.
“There’s a provable connection between the individuals who arrested these folks and the individuals who planted the evidence,” says Juan Andres Guerrero-Saade, a security researcher at SentinelOne who, along with fellow researcher Tom Hegel, will present findings at the Black Hat security conference in August. “This is beyond ethically compromised. It is beyond callous. So we’re trying to put as much data forward as we can in the hopes of helping these victims.”
SentinelOne’s new findings that link the Pune City Police to the long-running hacking campaign, which the company has called Modified Elephant, center on two particular targets of the campaign: Rona Wilson and Varvara Rao. Both men are activists and human rights defenders who were jailed in 2018 as part of a group called the Bhima Koregaon 16, named for the village where violence between Hindus and Dalits—the group once known as “untouchables”—broke out earlier that year. (One of those 16 defendants, 84-year-old Jesuit priest Stan Swamy, died in jail last year after contracting Covid-19. Rao, who is 81 years old and in poor health, has been released on medical bail, which expires next month. Of the other 14, only one has been granted bail.)
Early last year, Arsenal Consulting, a digital forensics firm working on behalf of the defendants, analyzed the contents of Wilson’s laptop, along with that of another defendant, human rights lawyer Surendra Gadling. Arsenal analysts found that evidence had clearly been fabricated on both machines. In Wilson’s case, a piece of malware known as NetWire had added 32 files to a folder of the computer’s hard drive, including a letter in which Wilson appeared to be conspiring with a banned Maoist group to assassinate Indian prime minister Narendra Modi. The letter was, in fact, created with a version of Microsoft Word that Wilson had never used, and that had never even been installed on his computer. Arsenal also found that Wilson’s computer had been hacked to install the NetWire malware after he opened an attachment sent from Varvara Rao’s email account, which had itself been compromised by the same hackers. “This is one of the most serious cases involving evidence-tampering that Arsenal has ever encountered,” Arsenal’s president, Mark Spencer, wrote in his report to the Indian court.
In February, SentinelOne published a detailed report on Modified Elephant, analyzing the malware and server infrastructure used in the hacking campaign to show that the two cases of evidence fabrication Arsenal had analyzed were part of a much larger pattern: The hackers had targeted hundreds of activists, journalists, academics, and lawyers with phishing emails and malware since as early as 2022. But in that report, SentinelOne stopped short of identifying any individual or organization behind the Modified Elephant hackers, writing only that the “activity aligns sharply with Indian state interests.”
Owner of iPhonix mobile Abhishek Balsara offers iPhones at the best rates
The iPhone can be an expensive option for some, but its price covers all the requirements of a person’s life and it is completely reliable. With an iPhone, you probably don’t need any other external devices.
These days, people are very careful about what they buy and what they wear, and depending on the trend, they also pay attention to the type of purchase. As the world of technology evolves, so does the demand for more functionality. This is the reason why the iPhone has become so popular in India and is currently the longest running phone that competes with Android.
To be precise, the iPhone is admired by almost everyone because it not only looks good but also has essential features that are really useful for the people who use it. Also, there have been a lot of updates as the company has been waiting for what people actually find useful and necessary in a phone. The iPhone may be an expensive option for some, but its price is completely reliable as it covers all the requirements of a person’s life. . With an iPhone, you probably don’t need any other external devices. You can trust him and his tasks so you never have to worry again.
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How to Find an Obituary for a Specific Person
As part of your family tree or ancestry research, you may need to find the obituary of a particular person. This article provides a list of resources to help find the obituary of a particular person.
Obituaries are one of the most important sources of information genealogists look for when looking for clues related to the life of their ancestors. What many may not know is that the practice of announcing death in this way dates back to 59 BC.
Roman newspapers inscribed in metal or stone, known as the Acta Diurna (Daily Events), are published in important places in Rome. It features celebrity births and deaths, as well as general gossip about important people in the city.
In 1439, the printing press was invented, and with the advent of newspapers, the practice of announcing prominent deaths continued.This has survived and is still a common practice.
So why do genealogies need obituaries, and more importantly
, how do you find the obituaries you need for your research?
Importance of obituaries
relatives and friends
Those with aging parents or who lived with grandparents may have sat and read the local newspaper to see if anyone they knew had died. As we grow older, we feel a morbid fascination with our own mortality, and as a result, we become fascinated by the people we meet and those who are close to our own age.
An obituary is an opportunity for families to let people they don’t know know that a loved one has died. In many cases, this allows family members to let people know when the funeral will be held, and old friends to attend and offer their condolences.
Obituaries serve an important social function. Because bereaved families don’t have to spend time grieving connecting with everyone the deceased loved one may have known.
Although obituaries are very important to genealogists, they are technically not considered definitive documentary evidence. Searching for ancestors in obituaries can help you find important information such as:
Religion and Church Affiliation
date of birth and place of birth
place of death and date of death
important biographical information
The family information provided in the obituary helps distinguish between the two of her namesakes in official documents. Knowing the names of siblings and parents makes it easier to determine a person’s accurate census record.
As with any mystery, there may be many small clues here to help you find the truth and the documents that support it. should always be taken as clues until further evidence is documented.
Cost increases faced with end of Adjusted Right to Rent checks
Rental agents are taking significant steps to comply with rental eligibility checks as the system allowing for coordinated checks (for example via Zoom calls and copies of documents) will end in the UK on 30 September of 2022. We are facing increasing costs.
From October 1, 2022, agents responsible for reapplying for tenants and rent checks will need to review their processes to be ready to return to manual in-person checks (this may be because someone who qualifies as a UK resident you will still be admitted if you present a valid ID). and Irish citizens), or register with one of the proptech service providers accredited by the UK government as a Digital Identity Service Provider (IDSP). Foreign checks must be processed through the Ministry of the Interior’s Sharecode system, to which agents have free access.
The change comes at the same time that agencies will have to deal with rising energy bills and rising staff retention costs by maintaining competitive compensation packages.
IDSP cost for British and Irish citizens
With the announcement of the first IDSP under the UK’s digital identity and attribute trust framework, agents need to be aware of and prepare for the upcoming changes. With the promulgation of the Tenant Fees Act 2019, the costs associated with the delivery of checks for the right to rent have not changed and cannot be passed on to applicants.
Coordinated checks were introduced as part of COVID-19 measures to reduce face-to-face contact and have been expanded as the Home Office works to implement a robust digital solution for national checks in the UK and Ireland. If an agent wishes to provide digital checks to people with ID cards in the UK and Ireland, once adjusted rental eligibility verification is complete, the agent will need to register with an ID service provider who will incur a fee for the service. Alternatively, agents can provide a manual verification in person if the applicant provides a suitable British or Irish ID. If an agent chooses to use IDSPs, they must take into account UK and Irish citizens who choose to verify their identity offline and must not discriminate on that basis.
Digital verifications for foreigners can be done easily and at no external cost by verifying through the home office system in real time using the common digital code and date of birth provided by the applicant.
If the agency’s system relies primarily on in-person reviews, consider the need for additional time and resources to schedule appointments for applicant reviews (and follow-up reviews of submitters, subject to time constraints). status) and the associated time change.
Keeping track of rent checks is more important than ever
Propertymark members notify the Home Office to establish a “legal excuse” for agents to provide statutory audit information if they are unable to obtain a foreign rent check again during the rental period. against late and/or civil penalties.
The Rental Law Code of Practice is ambiguous about liability for civil penalties when agents use IDSPs. The ultimate responsibility for verification rests with the landlord or designated rental agent. Therefore, the use of a UK government accredited IDSP does not eliminate all risks of civil penalties for landlords or designated rental agents when investigated by immigration authorities.
The reintroduction of personal checks coincided with seasonal changes in the incidence of COVID, the impact of which is unknown.
Since it was first introduced under immigration law in 2014, the work required for agents to complete rent checks in the UK has increased dramatically and there are now over 100 pages of instructions for agents to understand. years. The Rent Payments Act of 2019 forced agents to incur higher costs in this area.
A period of additional requirements is coming, whether agents continue to conduct in-person rental checks during application and follow-up or use one of our approved IDSP providers. This is a particular problem given the heightened scrutiny of students who are British citizens from the academic year onwards.
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