Hack the NSA to Gitmo Your Enemies
By now we've all heard the Obama Administration's plans for the NSA to share intercepts of US citizens with domestic law enforcement. You may even have read the ACLU's incisive criticism of those plans, along with their useful suggestions to protect your freedom. Spoiler alert: Everyone from Snowden down suggests encrypting your data. (Download Signal or Wickr today!)
But what no one has noticed is an amazing business opportunity.
The police can already gather evidence to use against you. How is the NSA's behavior any different?
The police generally need a search warrant to gather private digital information to use against you in court. To do so, they must convince a judge to issue that warrant, based on specific evidence of a crime, all of which must be disclosed to your defense attorney when and if you get prosecuted. No warrant? Evidence cannot be used in court. Warrant obtained through false testimony? Evidence cannot be used in court.*
The NSA doesn't need to do any of that. The data on US citizens to be turned over to the cops and courts is captured "incidentally" in the course of their routine international spying, or obtained from countries with whom we have mutual spying agreements. This completely flips the burden of proof, from the government having to prove there's a good reason to investigate you, and then having to defend their sources, to you, the defendant, having to counter evidence gathered literally by accident, from secret sources impossible to cross-examine.
Instead, I'm going to show you that business opportunity.
Let's say you're the founder of a scrappy new startup. You're building an amazing product that could easily become the next big thing. Only problem? A competitor duplicates your product and sells it better thanks to a huge marketing team. Your pipeline dries up with only a few weeks of runway left. What do you do?
Well, if this policy passes, you hire hackers to post online chatter revealing your competitor's CEO to be a criminal! For the cost a few Bitcoin, the NSA will see your adversary planning outlandish attacks on 4chan.
Best-case scenario? Your rival is arrested for a zillion felonies, put on trial, their attorneys never find out where the evidence came from (much less that it's fabricated), and they're sent to prison while you make billions and move to a country with no extradition treaties. (so that no one can pull the same stunt on you)
Now selling harassment isn't exactly a new idea; a hacking squad has been accused of a bombthreats-for-Bitcoin business much like this. And villagers in Afghanistan and Pakistan reported their neighbors, often those they had grudges against, as terrorists in exchange for bounties of up to $5000 from the US military.
The new opportunity here is that hackers get to leverage the power of the American criminal justice system against US citizens in America - and their victims will have fewer tools than ever to fight back.
This is the logical extension of calling in a fake hostage situation to get a SWAT team deployed against a mark. Why not take it to the next level and exploit prosecutors, judges and prisons to boot? Forget "Swatting" - this is "Gitmo-ing."
Call Me Maybe
In the meantime, I'm setting up a chain of startup coworking spaces in a diverse array of countries. This is a ten-figure market and I'm accepting investors today.
What's that? You think I'll get crushed by WeWork?
Let's just say I have a plan to deal with my biggest competitor.
Founded in April of 2014 in San Francisco, we are a venture-backed motley crew of passionate hackers building cybersecurity technologies to make the world's information faster, cleaner and safer to access.