The WikiLeaks submission system may still be incommunicado, but the secret-spilling site woke up on Thursday to release a trove of marketing documents from surveillance companies hawking their wares to governments — though many were previously published by the Wall Street Journal or were already publicly available on the web.
The site published 287 documents that it says are part of a larger cache of hundreds of such documents that reveal price lists, manuals and marketing claims from companies like Blue Coat, whose spying technology is being used by Syria, as well as Nokia-Siemens, Lucent and other large technology firms that have been criticized in the past for selling their wares to oppressive regimes.
The documents so far are getting mixed reviews from critics who point out that the Wall Street Journal published more than 200 of the marketing documents last month in an exposé focused on shining a light on the vast global market for off-the-shelf surveillance products.
The most salient leak in the WikiLeaks cache so far appears to be one discovered by WikiLeaks’ French media partner OWNI, which uncovered a screenshot from a manual created by the French surveillance firm Amesys that shows the e-mail addresses and online pseudonyms of at least 40 people — poets, journalists, writers, historians and intellectuals — who played key roles among Libya’s opposition groups and were evidently being spied on with Amesys technology.
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