So where exactly is the promised new WikiLeakS.org whistleblower leak submission system ? Nowhere to be seen

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Julian Assange speaking at the Frontline international press club in London, on Tuesday 24th October 2011 claimed that:

On November 28th, the one year anniversary of CableGate, we will launch our new generation submission system.

That includes, not just, a public interface, but also several other mechanisms that are necessary to deal with an attack on the entire internet security system, that has been established over the last few years, by intelligence agencies and criminal groups.

(See the previous WikiLeak.org blog article
Julian Assange promises a new WikiLeakS.org submission system to launch on 28th November 1st December 2011)

However the press conference in London was postponed from Monday 28th November to Thursday 1st December at an unannounced location (which turned out to be the City University), before a pre-registered audience of picked journalists.

None of these picked journalists seemed to ask any technical questions or any questions about Assange's Extradition to Sweden case.

So where were the details of this "new generation submission system." (remember that the old one has been broken for over 2 years now) ?

There was no such launch immediate announcement , nor a date for a future launch.

There were no technical details at all

Neither was there any hint about a "look and feel" prototype or whether or not the source code would be made public to be examined by independent experts or the public

Even so, some media outlets are incorrectly reporting that a new submission system has somehow been launched !

Instead there was the announcement of yet Another Wikileaks Spin Off website which "revealed" some 280 documents, mostly sales brochures and presentations about surveillance industry products, which are used both by legitimate Governments to help track down criminals and terrorists and by illegitimate Governments to suppress political opponents and freedoms (some Governments do both at the same time).

http://wikileaks.org/the-spyfiles.html

The French media partner Owni has produced a snazzy interactive map of from this small dataset:

http://spyfiles.org

All of these documents appear to have been already published on other websites and (until some of them are removed) many are still available on the manufacturer's own corporate websites.

Nobody has so far managed to find any of these documents which was first made public by WikiLeakS.org,

This market research was actually done by by Privacy International (Eric King @e315) and The Bureau of Investigative Journalism and by associates of the German Chaos Computer Club e.g. buggedplanet.info (domain name registered by Andy Mueller-Maguhn @mueller_maguhn) etc.

So what exactly did WikiLeakS.org contribute to this research ? WikiLeakS.org and Tor associate Jacob Appelbaum (@ioerror) has been doing his own research into say, satellite phone / data links for use in "Arab Spring" countries but he probably would have done this even without Julian Assange anyway.

Julian Assange provided a media sound bite, by asking if any of the assembled picked audience of journalists had an iPhone or a BlackBerry (Julian raised his own hand to both of those) or used Gmail. He then vaguely claimed that they were "all screwed",but he provided no specific examples of which of the list of products could actually be used to snoop on journalists or innocent members of the public without their knowledge.

Presumably Privacy International and The Bureau of Investigative Journalism etc. whose representatives spoke briefly on the platform dominated by Julian Assange, are happy with the media coverage generated, something which may not be possible soon if Assange is extradited to Sweden and is held in custody again.

Some of their supporters, this blog included, are not so happy to see Julian Assange claiming all the credit for this research project, none of which actually involved the supposed WikiLeakS.org anonymous whistleblower leak submission and publication system at all.


About this blog

This blog here at WikiLeak.org (no "S") discusses the ethical and technical issues raised by the WikiLeakS.org project, which is trying to be a resource for whistleblower leaks, by providing "untraceable mass document leaking and analysis".

These are bold and controversial aims and claims, with both pros and cons, especially for something which crosses international boundaries and legal jurisdictions.

This blog is not part of the WikiLeakS.org project, and there really are no copies of leaked documents or files being mirrored here.

Email Contact

Please feel free to email us your views about this website or news about the issues it tries to comment on:

email: blog@WikiLeak[dot]org

Before you send an email to this address, remember that this blog is independent of the WikiLeakS.org project.

If you have confidential information that you want to share with us, please make use of our PGP public encryption key or an email account based overseas e.g. Hushmail

LeakDirectory.org

Now that the WikiLeakS.org project is defunct, so far as new whistleblower are concerned, what are the alternatives ?

The LeakDirectory.org wiki page lists links and anonymity analyses of some of the many post-wikileaks projects.

There are also links to better funded "official" whistlblowing crime or national security reporting tip off websites or mainstream media websites. These should, in theory, be even better at protecting the anonymity and security of their informants, than wikileaks, but that is not always so.

New whistleblower website operators or new potential whistleblowers should carefully evaluate the best techniques (or common mistakes) from around the world and make their personal risk assessments accordingly.

Hints and Tips for Whistleblowers and Political Dissidents

The WikiLeakS.org Submissions web page provides some methods for sending them leaked documents, with varying degrees of anonymity and security. Anybody planning to do this for real, should also read some of the other guides and advice to political activists and dissidents:

Please take the appropriate precautions if you are planning to blow the whistle on shadowy and powerful people in Government or commerce, and their dubious policies. The mainstream media and bloggers also need to take simple precautions to help preserve the anonymity of their sources e.g. see Spy Blog's Hints and Tips for Whistleblowers - or use this easier to remember link: http://ht4w.co.uk

BlogSafer - wiki with multilingual guides to anonymous blogging

Digital Security & Privacy for Human Rights Defenders manual, by Irish NGO Frontline Defenders.

Everyone’s Guide to By-Passing Internet Censorship for Citizens Worldwide (.pdf - 31 pages), by the Citizenlab at the University of Toronto.

Handbook for Bloggers and Cyber-Dissidents - March 2008 version - (2.2 Mb - 80 pages .pdf) by Reporters Without Borders

Reporters Guide to Covering the Beijing Olympics by Human Rights Watch.

A Practical Security Handbook for Activists and Campaigns (v 2.6) (.doc - 62 pages), by experienced UK direct action political activists

Anonymous Blogging with Wordpress & Tor - useful step by step guide with software configuration screenshots by Ethan Zuckerman at Global Voices Advocacy. (updated March 10th 2009 with the latest Tor / Vidalia bundle details)

WikiLeakS Links

The WikiLeakS.org Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page.

WikiLeakS Twitter feeds

The WikiLeakS.org website does not stay online all of the time, especially when there is a surge of traffic caused by mainstream media coverage of a particularly newsworthy leak.

Recently, they have been using their new Twitter feeds, to selectively publicise leaked documents to the media, and also to report on the status of routing or traffic congestion problems affecting the main website in Stockholm, Sweden.

N.B.the words "security" or "anonymity" and "Twitter" are mutually exclusive:

WikiLeakS.org Twitter feed via SSL encrypted session: https://twitter.com/wikileaks

WikiLeakS.org unencrypted Twitter feed http://twitter.com/wikileaks

Internet Censorship

OpenNet Initiative - researches and measures the extent of actual state level censorship of the internet. Features a blocked web URL checker and censorship map.

Temporary Autonomous Zone

Temporary Autonomous Zones (TAZ) by Hakim Bey (Peter Lambourn Wilson)

Cyberpunk author William Gibson

Campaign Button Links

Watching Them, Watching Us, UK Public CCTV Surveillance Regulation Campaign
UK Public CCTV Surveillance Regulation Campaign

NO2ID Campaign - cross party opposition to the NuLabour Compulsory Biometric ID Card
NO2ID Campaign - cross party opposition to the NuLabour Compulsory Biometric ID Card and National Identity Register centralised database.

Gary McKinnon is facing extradition to the USA under the controversial Extradition Act 2003, without any prima facie evidence or charges brought against him in a UK court. Try him here in the UK, under UK law.
Gary McKinnon is facing extradition to the USA under the controversial Extradition Act 2003, without any prima facie evidence or charges brought against him in a UK court. Try him here in the UK, under UK law.

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FreeFarid.com - Kafkaesque extradition of Farid Hilali under the European Arrest Warrant to Spain

Peaceful resistance to the curtailment of our rights to Free Assembly and Free Speech in the SOCPA Designated Area around Parliament Square and beyond

Parliament Protest blog - resistance to the Designated Area restricting peaceful demonstrations or lobbying in the vicinity of Parliament.

Petition to the European Commission and European Parliament against their vague Data Retention plans
Data Retention is No Solution Petition to the European Commission and European Parliament against their vague Data Retention plans.

Save Parliament: Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill (and other issues)
Save Parliament - Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill (and other issues)

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Open Rights Group

The Big Opt Out Campaign - opt out of having your NHS Care Record medical records and personal details stored insecurely on a massive national centralised database.

Tor - the onion routing network
Tor - the onion routing network - "Tor aims to defend against traffic analysis, a form of network surveillance that threatens personal anonymity and privacy, confidential business activities and relationships, and state security. Communications are bounced around a distributed network of servers called onion routers, protecting you from websites that build profiles of your interests, local eavesdroppers that read your data or learn what sites you visit, and even the onion routers themselves."

Tor - the onion routing network
Anonymous Blogging with Wordpress and Tor - useful Guide published by Global Voices Advocacy with step by step software configuration screenshots (updated March 10th 2009).

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Amnesty International's irrepressible.info campaign

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BlogSafer - wiki with multilingual guides to anonymous blogging

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NGO in a box - Security Edition privacy and security software tools

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Home Office Watch blog, "a single repository of all the shambolic errors and mistakes made by the British Home Office compiled from Parliamentary Questions, news reports, and tip-offs by the Liberal Democrat Home Affairs team."

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Reporters Without Borders - Reporters Sans Frontières - campaign for journalists 'and bloggers' freedom in repressive countries and war zones.

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Committee to Protect Bloggers - "devoted to the protection of bloggers worldwide with a focus on highlighting the plight of bloggers threatened and imprisoned by their government."

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Wikileaks.org - the controversial "uncensorable, anonymous whistleblowing" website based currently in Sweden.

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