UK Government Fears of Laser SpyingAdded: Wednesday, September 4th, 2013
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The UK authorities claimed that conversations about Snowden leaks could have been monitored by foreign agents. One of the reasons government sources provided for demanding the return of the Snowden documents held by the Guardian at its London offices was that foreign agents were able to monitor conversations in the room through laser spying.
The authorities were not satisfied with assurances that the computers with the sensitive data were disconnected from any networks or Internet, and the security agencies remained concerned that the discussions around them could be heard. For example, one intelligence agency expert claimed that in case there was a plastic cup in the room, a laser trained on it could be able to pick up the vibrations of the conversation. Another variant was that a laser, using non-visible light, could be bounced off a window of the room.
Indeed, the idea of laser spying is known worldwide, and it has been already used by the United States against Russian embassies – a high-quality laser is able to fire a beam of invisible light for half a mile without spreading. Besides, there were reports that the CIA used a “laser microphone” to find out that a building in Abbottabad contained a previously unseen male inhabitant (Osama bin Laden).
However, this method wouldn’t necessarily yield what was actually being spoken, and therefore poses less of a risk than any other method. Security experts admit that if the others want to listen to what’s going on in a room, there are easier ways to do so. The laser spying works the following way: the conversation inside a room moves the air, which in its turn moves the windows. A laser beam will shift slightly in wavelength as the window moves, yielding the original conversation. It is known that the US government used it against the Russians. In addition, Nasa technology has recently been suggested as a method of extending the method: in 2005, New Scientist reported that the American security services were using a space technology to eavesdrop on a room with the pulled curtains.
In the meantime, simpler systems containing a bug are also able to transmit conversations which are picked up inside a room to the outside through a laser beam. This has been the plan when a bug with a laser transmitter was discovered in the offices of Trinidad & Tobago’s director of public prosecutions earlier in 2013. Undoubtedly, spying is much easier when you start inside the room rather than outside.
September 4th,2013Posted by:
Wednesday, September 4th, 2013
|posted by (2013-09-06 14:04:30)|
|not exactly new stuff, when pope Benedict XVI was elected in 2005. they blanketed every window of the area where the cardinals were locked in a room to decide who would become the next pope to prevent laser microphones from detecting who was the front runner.||
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