The States, according to their role of repression of individuals and groups doing subversive actions, put in place ways of keeping those individuals and groups under surveillance. It seems that some of this surveillance is done through the hiding of surveillance devices in the spaces we live in.
These devices take different forms : microphones, cameras, geolocation devices. Targeted spaces can be all the spaces we go through : buildings, vehicles, public space. These practices are sometimes legal, authorized by a judge for example, and sometimes not, done illegally by intelligence agencies.
We noticed the lack of informations available around us concerning this kind of surveillance. What is the real use of these devices by intelligence agencies? Which kind of devices are used? In which contexts? How efficiently? What can we do to oppose this kind of surveillance?
We want to gather informations about this subject. We want to focus on surveillance carried out by intelligence agencies and political police against individuals or groups doing subversive actions. Also, we limit ourselves to the study of physical surveillance devices hidden in the spaces inhabited by the suveilled individuals and groups (so we won’t talk about other kind of surveillance such as shadowing, phone-tapping and Internet surveillance).
What you will find on this website
Regularly, hidden surveillance devices are found in squats, activist spaces, vehicles, homes, or outside during public events. Sometimes these findings are made public on the Internet. We try to follow the news, and we publish these discoveries on the articles section of our website. We also publish an overview of surveillance devices and a list of found surveillance devices, which contains around fifty examples of found devices since 2007, mostly in Italy but also in other countries.
When cops decide to spy on us using surveillance devices, they need to get the devices from somewhere. It seems that they often buy these devices from private companies. The companies that manufacture and market surveillance-related products and services to law enforcement agencies, governments, and armed forces, form what we call the surveillance industry. We publish a few resources about this industry, including a list of companies that sell physical surveillance devices designed to be hidden in spaces to law enforcement agencies.
Update of the list of devices: 11 cases added (may 2021)
As part of our research work on the use of hidden physical surveillance devices by law enforcement and intelligence agencies, we publish a list of found surveillance devices.
In this update, 11 cases from 1988 to 2013 have been added to the list. Also, we now include a “methodology” section, which explains how the list is constructed. Documentation was added on:
– A tracking device found under a car in Berlin (Germany) in july 1988
– GPS trackers found under three cars in Boulder (United States) in july 2003
– A surveillance device found in a car in Rovereto (Italy) in november 2004
– A surveillance device found in a car in Bologna (Italy) in march 2005
– A GPS tracker found under a car in Bad Oldesloe (Germany) in march 2007
– A GPS tracker found in a car in Berlin (Germany) in may 2007
– A GPS tracker found under the car of Marius Mason in Cincinnati (United States) in february 2008. About a month after the device was found, Marius Mason was arrested and later sentenced to 22 years in prison for arson attacks (more information available at supportmariusmason.org).
– A GPS tracker found under a car in Levin (New Zealand) in april 2010
– A tracking device found under a car in Lübeck (Germany) in april 2013
– A GPS tracker found under a car in Leipzig (Germany) in may 2013
– A GPS tracker found under a car in Stuttgart (Germany) in june 2013