ARUBA-POSTALE 1 / PRIVACY 0
When we started the autistici project, we thought in our cosmic pessimism that the worst thing could have happened could have been the seizing of our server, a idiot-sniffing of our data traffic and that cryptography should have been enough to keep relatively sure communications of our users. We were wrong. There are no conditions in italy to let you talk about privacy protection.
On 15th june 2004 officers of the postal police, under an order coming from Bologna attorney, reached the Aruba provider where one of our association's server is hosted. Aruba switched off our machine, without telling us anything, and let them copy what they wanted to. We contacted the provider by telephone to ask what was going on and they told us it was an electricity failure.
From that moment on, as we can see from the legal acts available since some
days ago, they eavesdropped continously the webmail account named
Potentially, they had the chance to eavesdrop and decrypt all the other communications passing by our machine, and they still can.
For these reasons, as soon as possible, we're going to switch off our machine, retire it from that provider and think about our next steps. By now we invite everyone who houses a server or hosts a website in the Aruba webfarm and who values his/her privacy, to find another place and leave Aruba rotting in its meagerness.
Privacy conditions in italy were dire themselves: we have just tested on our skin that we can unplug the machine and declare the clinical death of the patient. We cannot know how many other commercial providers give help to police without giving any communications to their costumers; we cannot know how many and which are the informations that police can get from your and our servers or websites. We cannot know what kind of use they will do of those data; we cannot know if the provider let others do this special treatment after being well paid from competitors or personal informations traffickers.
The scene is worthy of the best negative utopias: to organize a potential mass-eavesdropping for about 6000 mail users and 500 mailing lists, excusing it with the need to read one single mailbox, it's by itself the farest point from the meaning of 'freedom of speech'.
THIS IS NOT A PRIVATE MATTER, it's not something regarding only us, we guess we are a good guinea-pig on whom to experiment new kind of controls and eavesdropping, like all the people involved into file sharing inquieries or other repression episodes.
THIS IS NOT A MATTER ABOUT JUST AN ASSOCIATION OR A SINGLE INDIPENDENT SERVER.
We're talking about the same inquery in which the FBI misused a federal decree excusing it for acquiring one log file and seized the entire Indymedia Italy server, on the october, 7th 2004.
Into the next and more technical press releases, we'll try to explain better the sort of the attack and our contermeasures, and also
the political events we're going to bring up, as we are sure to be not alone in this struggle.
As we can't grant anymore a reliable service, we're going to retire the server for some days, during which we're going to clean it up and put it back on line.
We don't plan to give to police and to servant providers any satisfaction about giving up: the downtime will be shorter than possible, few days and no more, and we'll use this bad fact to rise again like a wounded phoenix from the ashes.
THIS IS NOT A PRIVATE MATTER, EVEN IF IT'S A PRIVACY MATTER.
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