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Black Code: Surveillance, Privacy, and the Dark Side of the Internet

Black Code: Surveillance, Privacy, and the Dark Side of the Internet

by Ronald J. Deibert


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Cyberspace is all around us. We depend on it for everything we do. We have reengineered our business, governance, and social relations around a planetary network unlike any before it. But there are dangers looming, and malign forces are threatening to transform this extraordinary domain.

In Black Code, Ronald J. Deibert, a leading expert on digital technology, security, and human rights, lifts the lid on cyberspace and shows what’s at stake for Internet users and citizens. As cyberspace develops in unprecedented ways, powerful agents are scrambling for control. Predatory cyber criminal gangs such as Koobface have made social media their stalking ground. The discovery of Stuxnet, a computer worm reportedly developed by Israel and the United States and aimed at Iran’s nuclear facilities, showed that state cyberwar is now a very real possibility. Governments and corporations are in collusion and are setting the rules of the road behind closed doors.

This is not the way it was supposed to be. The Internet’s original promise of a global commons of shared knowledge and communications is now under threat.

Drawing on the first-hand experiences of one of the most important protagonists in the battle — the Citizen Lab and its global network of frontline researchers, who have spent more than a decade cracking cyber espionage rings and uncovering attacks on citizens and NGOs worldwide — Black Code takes readers on a fascinating journey into the battle for cyberspace. Thought-provoking, compelling, and sometimes frightening, it is a wakeup call to citizens who have come to take the Internet for granted. Cyberspace is ours, it is what we make of it, Deibert argues, and we need to act now before it slips through our grasp.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780771025358
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
Publication date: 11/19/2013
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 668,884
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

RONALD J. DEIBERT is professor of Political Science and Director of the Canada Centre for Global Security Studies and the Citizen Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto, an interdisciplinary research and development “hothouse” working at the intersection of the Internet, global security, and human rights. He is a co-founder and a principal investigator of the OpenNet Initiative and the Information Warfare Monitor, which uncovered the GhostNet cyberespionage network of over 2,500 infected computers in 103 countries. Deibert’s work has received frontpage coverage in the Toronto Star, Globe and Mail, International Herald Tribune, and New York Times. He lives in Toronto with his family.

Table of Contents

Author's Note to the Paperback Edition ix

Preface 001

Introduction 010

Cyberspace: Free, Restricted, Unavoidable

1 Chasing Shadows 021

2 Filters and Chokepoints 029

3 Big Data: They Reap What We Sow 050

4 The China Syndrome 069

5 The Next Billion Digital Natives 082

6 We the People of … Facebook 103

7 Policing Cyberspace: Is There an "Other Request" on the Line? 112

8 Meet Koobface: A Cyber Crime Snapshot 133

9 Digitally Armed and Dangerous 148

10 Fanning the Flames of Cyber Warfare 170

11 Stuxnet and the Argument for Clean War 176

12 The Internet Is Officially Dead 188

13 A Zero Day No More 195

14 Anonymous: Expect Us 217

15 Towards Distributed Security and Stewardship in Cyberspace 232

Not an Epilogue 246

104 Years of Anglo-American Surveillance: A Selected Timeline 251

Notes 259

Acknowledgements 304

Index 307

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