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Encryption Privacy The Internet The Media

Turkey Arrests Journalists For Using Encryption 145

An anonymous reader sends news that three employees of Vice News were arrested in Turkey because one of them used an encryption system on his personal computer. That particular type of encryption has been used by the terrorist organization known as the Islamic State, so the men were charged with "engaging in terrorist activity." The head of a local lawyers association said, "I find it ridiculous that they were taken into custody. I don't believe there is any accuracy to what they are charged for. To me, it seems like an attempt by the government to get international journalists away from the area of conflict." The Turkish government denied these claims: "This is an unpleasant incident, but the judiciary is moving forward with the investigation independently and, contrary to claims, the government has no role in the proceedings."
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Turkey Arrests Journalists For Using Encryption

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 01, 2015 @10:38PM (#50441287)

    Not that surprising for anyone that follows Turkish politics. Erdogan isn't as bad as ISIS but he inch-by-inch is taking Turkey down the theocratic road of countries like Afghanistan. He practically had to be coerced into fighting ISIS. Very plausible he would have joined forces with ISIS to fight Kurds if it hadn't been for foreign pressure)

    Most Turks you meet are super nice in person but for some unfathomable reason this crpto-fascist jerk keeps winning elections. If he keeps winning elections, Turkey is going to devolve into a theocracy like most of the rest of the middle east. Secular Atatürk was rational (especially for his era). Erdogan things he's an Ottoman sultan. Populist moron.

    • Most Turks you meet are super nice in person but for some unfathomable reason this crpto-fascist jerk keeps winning elections.

      The Turks you have met, and the Turks voting for Erdogan, are likely disjoint sets. You have most likely met people from Istanbul, or the Western Coast. The people voting for Erdogan are mostly from rural Anatolia.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        The Turkish version of Americans that vote for Republican politicians that tell them the earth is 6000 years and that they are super special! Or some Israeli's that vote for politicians that tell them some dude Moses talked to a bush and they are the chosen ones! There is something refreshing knowing people can behave like idiots in every nation.

      • The Turks you have met, and the Turks voting for Erdogan, are likely disjoint sets.

        Very possibly true.

        You have most likely met people from Istanbul, or the Western Coast. The people voting for Erdogan are mostly from rural Anatolia.

        Having spent much of the last 6 months working in Turkey, I've been meeting a fair number of Turks from all over the country. While most of them have, in fact been quite nice and personable people (including the ones who really didn't want to be there), I couldn't draw a geogra

    • Not that surprising for anyone that follows Turkish politics. Erdogan isn't as bad as ISIS but he inch-by-inch is taking Turkey down the theocratic road of countries like Afghanistan. He practically had to be coerced into fighting ISIS. Very plausible he would have joined forces with ISIS to fight Kurds if it hadn't been for foreign pressure)

      Most Turks you meet are super nice in person but for some unfathomable reason this crpto-fascist jerk keeps winning elections. If he keeps winning elections, Turkey is going to devolve into a theocracy like most of the rest of the middle east. Secular Atatürk was rational (especially for his era). Erdogan things he's an Ottoman sultan. Populist moron.

      Good post. Actually the word I keep hearing is that Turkey isn't fighting ISIS at all but is using it as a pretext to only attack various Kurdish groups they don't like.

      As an American who has traveled quite a bit to Europe and consider myself somewhat pro-Europe, I have given up on Turkey. (Disclaimer - I've never visited Turkey.) If you could talk to me in the late 1990s or very early 2000s, I was all for Turkey joining the EU. I have completely reversed myself and now while I have no say as I'm n

  • by meerling ( 1487879 ) on Tuesday September 01, 2015 @10:39PM (#50441303)
    Wow, so now to get arrested for terrorism, all you have to do is use the same kind of thing that a terrorist has used?
    I sure hope none of them wear Nikes.
    • by gl4ss ( 559668 )

      well, you have to wear same kind of nike knockoffs.

      and piss off Erdogan by reporting PKK of consisting of human beings trying to fight ISIS to keep their brethren alive.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Yea it's kinda like all you have to do in the US to get arrested for treason is reveal the way the government is abusing the citizens.

      Get off your high horse. This wouldn't even make the news were it any other OECD country.

    • They don't.

      http://www.dailydot.com/politi... [dailydot.com]

  • by cartesius ( 4227459 ) on Tuesday September 01, 2015 @11:02PM (#50441369)
    "the Casio F-91W digital watch was declared to be 'the sign of al-Qaeda' and a contributing factor to continued detention of prisoners by the analysts stationed at GuantÃnamo Bay." from https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wik... [wikipedia.org]
    • that and there was a nokia phone as well that is 10 years old and selling for 10s of thousands of dollars. I cant seem to find the model right now however
      • by Lehk228 ( 705449 )
        certain revisions of the nokia 1100, i have one but not one that is the revision worth a lot of money, mine is just an old phone in a drawer.
    • by KGIII ( 973947 )

      I thought you were bullshitting or a spammer. *sighs* I kind of wish I still thought that but I clicked your link. Maybe we need to lock up anyone that uses Energizer batteries. There is one in the picture... I'm going to want a more compelling reason to believe that a wearer is a terrorist.

      • To be fair, outside of Japan, that watch pretty much screams social ineptitude, and terrorists are nothing if not socially inept.

        Come to think of it, that watch might be single-handedly responsible for the decreased birth rate inside Japan. It's like a birth control watch. Well, if it had hands anyway.

        • by KGIII ( 973947 )

          I would not trade my Citizen for one. Yay! I am not a terrorist! My mother would be proud.

    • Very interesting, I learned something about a Casio watch I used to own today!

      Anyway back to the article, I think there should be a difference between using a specific encryption scheme (applying math to your data), and purchasing a physical piece of specific technology. But then again, there are import/export laws concerning security so I guess there is some legal precedent, even if it's questionable.

    • Funny enough, I bought an F-91W because of this press. I was starting to realize that most of the time I was taking my phone out of my pocket, it was to check the time. Every time I did that, I was taking myself away from what I was doing for way too long, and it was one more chance to drop an expensive phone.

      So: I went looking for a cheap watch. I first hunted down the F-91W because of the terrorist association press, and the Amazon reviews are awesome. It's also a common watch sold at US military PXs, so

  • https? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by countach ( 534280 ) on Tuesday September 01, 2015 @11:37PM (#50441479)

    What encryption system I wonder. Isn't https an encryption system that is used by Islamic State?

    • Probably TrueCrypt, given that's what Snowden told Glenn Greenwald to use, and Greenwald is probably pretty close to the Vice news guys. Also, anyone wanting to protect their data from government surveillance would have been looking at the Snowden story very closely, so it's at least plausible, but very likely IMO, that ISIS uses TrueCrypt as well.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Not so fun when your staffers are falsely accused of being terrorists in an area where the real world consequences could mean prison, or even death. Maybe your staffers over here in the US will learn not be so quick to flippantly and falsely label others as "terrorists" just because it gets you clicks and promulgates a feminist agenda.

  • by drolli ( 522659 )

    So if i browsw Websites using SSL (something which the ISIS probably also does), i am also a terrorrist?

    I guess i wont tranfer in Istanbul Airport the next time i travel.

  • ... what's next; banning Mathematics?? Because that's exactly what encryption is.

    Instead of banning the tool (which never works) how about going after the _behaviors_.

    Gee, if only we had some evidence about the power of peer pressure [rollingstone.com] (7. The Harvard Man)

  • by simplypeachy ( 706253 ) on Wednesday September 02, 2015 @04:38AM (#50442181)

    You wanted functional encryption to be made illegal. Turkey has just taken a bold step towards this brave stance. How does it taste to you? I bet the EU spokeswoman's comments made the pill even more delicious, since she mentioned human rights, which is something the UK government also wants to shred.

  • Encryption is an inherently criminal activity: the only people who would ever think to engage in it are obviously nefarious cretins w/ something to hide [memegenerator.net].

    Therefore, anyone who refuses to immediately give up their password/passphrase to Deputy Fife [wikipedia.org] or Mall Cop Paul [wikipedia.org] should automatically be sentenced to 20 years minimal time at hard labor.

    Note that these evil terrorists also assert the following additional abominable outrages:
    1. Right to exercise free religion, free speech, free press, free open assembl

  • Turkey shuts down water plants and bans oxygen and nitrogen. Turkish government notes that terrorists are using these substances to survive.

    More at 11.
  • by Lehk228 ( 705449 )
    and yet the EU is still entertaining the idea of admitting these clowns as full members.

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