What Goes Around Comes Around

What’s worse? Governments that openly deal in stolen information (Germany buying CDs from informants with lists of Germans having Swiss bank accounts) or Governments that spy on governments who do so?

Mole

Ha. Ha. Ha.

German investigators suspect that a mole spied for Swiss intelligence from inside a government office which was trying to catch German tax dodgers… Switzerland objects to the practice of buying data stolen from Swiss banks.

SPD empört über Steuer-Spitzeleien der Schweiz.

This Doll Must Die

Don’t EVER let anybody tell you that Germans are lasch (feeble) when it comes to threats posed to them by foreign intelligence snoops.

Cayla

Forget about not caring about Putin & Co., forget about spinning your wheels ridiculously with your NSA spying affair. We’ve got a real live (sort of) freakin’ wi-fi-connected Internet doll on the loose and we’re all going to die if we don’t kill her first. OK. So we don’t know who she’s working for yet. But still.

A German government watchdog has ordered parents to destroy an internet-connected doll for fear it could be used as a surveillance device. According to a report from BBC News, the German Federal Network Agency said the doll (which contains a microphone and speaker) was equivalent to a “concealed transmitting device” and therefore prohibited under German telecom law…

“My Friend Cayla” uses a microphone to listen to questions, sending this audio over Wi-Fi to a third-party company (Nuance) that converts it to text. This is then used to search the internet, allowing the doll to answer basic questions, like “What’s a baby kangaroo called?”

Why would anybody want to know what a baby kangaroo is called, huh?

And this is just the beginning, too. These wi-fi-thingies will soon be everywhere. “It doesn’t matter what that object is — it could be an ashtray or a fire alarm.” Damn right. So after you’ve finished strangling this doll toss everything else out of the window while you’re at it. Just in case. They’re out to get us, people. They’re everywhere, I tell you. Whoever they are. Bad dolly!

At what point did we enter this Philip K. Dick novel, anyway?

The Spy Who PowerPointed Me

Just like the way Russia doesn’t spy on US-Amerika, Iran doesn’t spy on Germany, either.

Spy

And when not doing so, Iranian spies don’t send PowerPoint presentations that incorrectly communicate biographical details about the target they are not targeting, either.

The exact motive for carrying out a possible attack on Robbe is still unclear. However, security agencies speculate that the Iranian government could have been preparing a retaliatory move against people closely linked to Israel should Israel carry out airstrikes against Iranian nuclear power plants.

If It Works For You

Just let me get this straight. This married father of four German spy guy of Spanish descent is a onetime gay porn actor turned secret Islamist extremist mole?

Spy

Hey, it’s hard to find steady work these days.

Two weeks ago, German intelligence agents noticed an unusual user in a chat room known as a digital hideout for Islamic militants. The man claimed to be one of them — and said he was a German spy. He was offering to help Islamists infiltrate his agency’s defenses to stage a strike. Agents lured him into a private chat, and he gave away so many details about the spy agency — and his own directives within it to thwart Islamists — that they quickly identified him, arresting the 51-year-old the next day. Only then would the extent of his double life become clear.

Enttarnter Islamist war Darsteller in Pornofilmen.

Double-O-Sieben In Da Hood

Or at least under it.

007

Now we know why we never hear much about German spy activity. First off all, German spies are really easy to recognize because of those dopey hoods they wear. I mean, duh. Like you can see them spying at you a mile away.

And secondly, if any of them do turn out to be any good, they get thrown into jail for tax evasion.

Germany’s answer to James Bond on Monday faced what may prove to be the greatest challenge of his career as he went on trial on charges of tax evasion…

The 76-year-old Mr Werner* has claimed he helped avert a mafia poisoning attempt against Pope Benedict XVI negotiated between Israel and Hamas, and took part in intelligence operations against Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (Isil).

* It’s Mr. Mauss, Telegraph journalists, not Mr. Werner. Mr. Mauss is a way cooler spy name, too.

The Spy Who Got Left Out In The Cold

Crazy court rulings these days, I tell ya. One court here in Germany, for instance, just ruled that Edward Snowden HIMSELF cannot receive an honorary degree from the University of Rostock

Snowden

This is because – now get this – providing controversial and politically charged intelligence service data does not constitute a scientific achievement.

What do ya thinka that? What a bunch of jurisprudence. Why, that’s absolutely positively, uh… Wait a minute. Sure makes sense to me, come to think of it (is that why this court decision is so outrageous?). But now let’s move on.  So who the hell are these wackos from the University of Rostock?

Ist die Bereitstellung brisanter Geheimdienst-Daten eine besondere wissenschaftliche Leistung oder nicht?

German Spy Finally Going To Experience Something Exciting

It’s a little number they call “eight years of prison.”

Spy

According to German authorities, Reichel spied for both the CIA and the Russian secret service because he was bored, frustrated with his workplace environment and wanted to “experience something exciting.”

Just remember: “When you pay attention to boredom it gets unbelievably interesting.”

Der 32-Jährige begründete die Spionage zu Prozessbeginn mit Frust, Unzufriedenheit und Unterforderung an seinem Arbeitsplatz. “Im BND hatte ich den Eindruck: Da hat man mir nichts zugetraut”, sagte er. Bei der CIA wäre das anders gewesen. Dort hätte er sich beweisen können.

German Spies Don’t Spy On Friends

But only because they appear to have Laurel and Hardy doing it.

BND

An attempt to wiretap John Kerry’s personal cellphone number back in 2013 failed, for instance, because the agent trying to do the listening in mixed up the US country code with one from Africa.

The Germans apparently had better luck spying on the former foreign policy chief of the European Union, Catherine Ashton back in 2008, however, although I have to assume that they misdialed this number, too. Maybe they were tying to listen in on that Jose Manuel Barroso guy instead?

Laut „Spiegel“ hatte der BND auch die Handynummer von US-Außenminister John Kerry 2013 in die Erfassung aufgenommen. Dabei habe es aber wegen einer Panne keine Abhörergebnisse gegeben: Ein BND-Mitarbeiter habe angeblich statt der Ländervorwahl der USA versehentlich die eines afrikanischen Landes eingegeben.

German Of The Day: Putzig

That means cute. As in funny cute. You know, comical? Like when little kids say something unexpectedly and unintentionally funny? Or, I dunno, like when Germans are completely shocked to find out that their spy agency actually spies on other folks, too?

Spies

After angrily upbraiding the U.S. for its electronic spying networks that targeted Germans, the government of Chancellor Angela Merkel has been rocked by two reports in less than a week charging that German intelligence targeted U.S. arms companies, the FBI, a top French diplomat, several international organizations and allied government departments, and even a German diplomat working for the European Union.

“Es kann solche Praktiken zwischen Verbündeten nicht geben.”

N-S-A, B-N-D, Spy-On-You-And-Me

Our espionage doesn’t stink, right? “Spying among friends? That’s just not done.” But spying on their countries, NGOs and the Vatican? That’s a different matter.

Spy

Since October’s revelations, it has emerged that the BND spied on the United States Department of the Interior and the interior ministries of EU member states including Poland, Austria, Denmark and Croatia. The search terms used by the BND in its espionage also included communications lines belonging to US diplomatic outposts in Brussels and the United Nations in New York. The list even included the US State Department’s hotline for travel warnings.

The German intelligence service’s interest wasn’t restricted to state institutions either: It also spied on non-governmental organizations like Care International, Oxfam and the International Committee of the Red Cross in Geneva. In Germany, the BND’s own selector lists included numerous foreign embassies and consulates. The e-mail addresses, telephone numbers and fax numbers of the diplomatic representations of the United States, France, Great Britain, Sweden, Portugal, Greece, Spain, Italy, Austria, Switzerland and even the Vatican were all monitored in this way. Diplomatic facilities are not covered under Article 10 of Germany’s constitution, the Basic Law, which protects German telecommunications participants from such surveillance.

“Ausspähen unter Freunden – das geht gar nicht.”