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Middle-East Activists Get James Bond-like Data Eraser Technology

Software erases incriminating evidence from an activist's cellphone in a pinch.

panic button

A new "panic button" program allows hunted activists to quickly erase all incriminating data from a cell phone that they collected on a corrupt government. Created in partnership with the State Department's new technology freedom initiatives, innovator Benetech imagines that the eraser program would be initiated in an instance when government agents are breaking down the door of an activist's home and there are only moments to destroy evidence that proves the activist was spying on the government. More importantly, all the data that the activist has captured (jailing, torture, corruption, etc.) can still be safely stored on the cloud after the data is securely wiped from the device. The evidence is important for both ongoing protests and later prosecution by criminal courts.

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  • Tim Gavan

    The state department helped to create something that would help people gather secret information from their governments and avoid prosecution for doing so; the state department publicly denounced Julian Assange and detained Private Bradley Manning for disseminating government secrets. Regardless of your opinion on the Wikileaks affair, that seems a bit contradictory, if not entirely hypocritical.