Infos, Date & Times – Million Mask March 2019

Admittedly, over the course of the last several years the global phenomenon known as the “Million Mask March” has slowly lost a little bit of steam in main stream society, many thanks to all those hard workers at the National Crime Centre of London and the FBI of the United States for that! But as I take a look around the hacking scene again in the fall of 2019 I can already see something is new, something is different, and can already feel a heightened sense of fervor surround this years March – November 5th 2019.

It’s hard to say what is fueling it, but what we do know is that this years movement will largely be led by many countries we wouldn’t normally have expected over previous years, such as the Sudan in Africa, Ecuador and Brasil in South America, and Hong Kong in the far East – where fervor appears to be at its highest. Talking to different members online, there are already extensive protests already lined up for the 5th there – which will surely be a sight to see.

Learn More – Million Mask March 2019:

Browsing through the list for myself, I can not help but notice that there are no events planned for New York City this year though – which is something I should have expected. Granted last November 5th it was raining and in the mid 30’s (Fahrenheit) when I showed up at the MMM 2018 on Wall Street, I was disappointed to learn that I was literally the only one present that day – aside from all the guard rails and police, that is. Perhaps it is the natural course of things, but even though the Million Mask March may be dying in some of the more legacy places around the world you might have expect it, such as New York City, it is in turn now growing in other regions you might not have never found it before. Either way, anyone and everyone interested should do what they can to support the movement and next months march, even if it means just making some flyers/signs and pinning them up around where ever you happen to live.

** EDITORS NOTE: New York City was officially added to protests list 10/14 **

Many activists are already hard at work and have just released a preliminary list of confirmed events/marches taking place on November 5th 2019, and are inviting anyone who reads to come and join them. Please note that these lists will continue to be updated and will grow over the following days and weeks, as more events are confirmed from all around the world. If you are interested in learning more about the group, march or movement itself, we have also put together a list of websites and chatroom’s for your resources – all are welcome to join/explore. You can learn more about MMM 2019, the people hosting them and the people organizing them via the links provided below – enjoy!

Pastebin Infos:
Website Backup:
Discord Server/Chat:
Follow #MMM2019 on Twitter:
Follow #MillionMaskMarch on Twitter:




Sc0rpi0n Gh0s7 Hacks, Leaks & Defaces Several Government Websites Across Ecuador In Protest of Julian Assange’s Incarceration

Earlier today, April 25th 2019, an old friend of mine from Ethiopia going by the name of “Sc0rpi0nGh0s7” of “Shad0w Security” released a massive leak on behalf of #OpJulian – a spinoff the international hacking operations known as #OpEcuador and #OpAssange, all launched in protest of the arrest of Julian Assange two weeks ago. This was also their second such major hacking event of the last week, following a separate hack, leak and defacement of Geographic Management System of Ecuador on April 22nd. While the leak that day was taken down within hours of its initial release before anyone could back it up, fortunately, Rogue Media Labs has backup today’s release before anyone could touch it.

The database itself is large, featuring a 514 Megabyte zip file of various text files stolen from the servers of various Ecuadorian websites. Honestly, it’s too much data to all summarize here. So, if you you are interested in learning more, you are invited to download either of the files located below – both certified safe to the browsing public.

Target 04/22/2019: hxxp://

Data Leak 04/25/2019:
Data Leak Backup:

Declassified Documents from CIA Reveal US Political Interference South America Throughout The Cold War

So, this article is going to be a little bit difficult to piece together and involves a lot of information you were never technically supposed to see, but now can. This is because, for those of you whom might not have been aware, the US intelligence community just finished wrapping up a declassified document dump 3 years in the making last Friday – April 12th 2019. Officially entitled the “Argentina Declassification Project” and originally ordered by Barack Obama in 2016, the now browse-able archive is home to literally tens of thousands of declassified documents centering around Argentina and Argentinian history – including up on through the end of WW2 and into the Cold War.

However, what makes these documents particularly unique, and just as equally controversial, are direct references to operations carried out by the US Central Intelligence Agency, US military and our allies abroad – including France and England. What I mean to say is that the documents almost accidentally reveal/outline US War strategy throughout the course of the Cold War, and chronicle top-secret CIA missions that no one has ever heard or seen of before – because these documents have remained classified for the better part of the last 5 decades! In a weird way, the documents released last week almost throw the US and some of our closest allies completely under the bus – something I don’t believe was Obama’s original intention – or maybe perhaps it was? 🤔

Browse Full Archive – Argentina Declassification Project:

Interestingly enough, in 2016 President Obama initially referred to the directive to release these documents as a “humanitiarian gesture” extended towards Argentina, hoping to expose and/or shine light on human rights violations which have crippled the country/region throughout the past. Taking a look at these documents first hand here today, in retrospect, while Obama wasn’t necessarily wrong in his inclinations, he may have wildly under-estimated what would be revealed or how bad it would make the US and CIA look. But then again, maybe Obama did know all along, and this is exactly why he ordered the release – who knows, really?

I bring this up because what appears to be catching the eyes/attention of some of my fellow “comrades” are details surrounding something referred to as”Operation Condor” – a delf describeda cooperative effort by the intelligence/security services of several South American countries to combat terrorism and subversion,” spearheaded by US intelligence with help from our counterparts in “France, United Kingdom, Western Germany, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Learn More – Operation Condor from CIA Reading Room:

As you can read for yourself within the newly declassified document below, and as was explained in more detail by Chilean reporter Whitney Webb, “Operation Condor was a plan by the CIA that targeted leftists, suspected leftists and their “sympathizers” and resulted in the forced disappearances, torture and brutal murders of an estimated 60,000 people, as well as the political imprisonment of around half a million people. Around half of the estimated murders occurred in Argentina.” However, what caught my attention was the CIA’s use of the term “Psychological Warfare” to describe what they were attempting to do in South America as a means of subverting their enemies. This is because I have previously covered the US Governments use of psychological warfare as a means of combating Russia under Donald Trump.

Browse 4 Page Document – Operation Condor Strategy 08/22/1978:

[pdf-embedder url=””%5D

Regardless, Web then goes on to explain how “several other documents in the recent release discuss a decision made by Condor member countries in May 1976 to train and send a military unit to “conduct physical attacks” against left-wing Latin American exiles and their supporters in France, in what was codenamed “Teseo.” Adding that “several Condor countries, aside from Brazil and Bolivia, were eager to participate and the training of the “Teseo” unit did occur, though the CIA was apparently unaware whether the unit was actually sent to France.” However, further research by Rogue Media Labs confirms the movements of these very operations in and around Europe – as you can see from the FOIA CIA reading room documents provided below, a resource I do not believe Web had access to at the time.

Learn More – Operation Teseo from CIA Archives:

Browse 10 Page Release of Teseo Agreement To Enter Europe:

[pdf-embedder url=””%5D

Unfortunately, I really wish it ended there, but it does not. As Webb goes on to explain, sponsored by the US Military, Central Intelligence Agency and their counterparts in Europe, Operation Condor ultimately went on to overthrow and installed new Governments in 6 South American countries throughout the course of the 1970’s – in Chile, Brasil, Uraguay, Bolivia, Ecuador and Argentina, forever altering history.

Snipet from MintPress News:

Image may contain: text

Read Whitney Webb’s Full Article Here:

A separate report published by The Guardian on April 15th 2019 called Operation Condora secret programme in which the dictatorships of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Chile, Bolivia, Peru and Ecuador conspired to kidnap and assassinate members of leftwing guerrilla groups in each other’s territories” – implying that all those killed or imprisoned were all terrorists, militant members or enemies of the state. However, as The Guardian also points out, “many — and one could convincingly argue the majority — of those killed, tortured and imprisoned were not members of guerilla groups, as there are thousands of documented cases of college students, musicians, writers, journalists, priests and nuns, pregnant women, teachers, indigenous leaders, union members and others who were subject to the extreme prejudice of Operation Condor despite not being combatants in any capacity.

According some reports, as many as 60,000 people were killed and/or assassinated as a result of these very operations – nearly half of which came from Argentina alone. Once again, as was previously stated in the lead to this article, President Obama released these documents as a favor to Argentina to help them understand their past and the human rights violations which have occurred their throughout their checkered past – though it is anyone guess how aware Obama was at the time of just how great/large of a role the United States actually played in those same human rights violations. I guess that is what you call “irony.

Regardless, thanks to multiple document dumps released by the CIA and US Intelligence community over the course last two years, together with some good ole fashion research, even though we already kind of knew these sorts of things happen, it’s just a little weird/eerie to see literal proof of it all – showcasing the very documents/treaties/back-room agreements we drafted and signed to pull it all off. Imagine if this information was made public at the time? How different would our world look today? Now that they are all out in the open for the world to see, how pissed off do you think people will be? How much will these sorts of documents influence future US relations? Your guess is as good as mine.

Lastly, when I look around at the world today, I see the US active in “regime change” in Syria, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, Egypt and North Korea throughout the course of the 21st century. Moreover, we have carried out these operations/War efforts in the name of “terrorism” – quite literally fighting a “War On Terror.” Looking back at CIA documents from the 1970’s and seeing the same terminology of “terrorism” and “regime change” frightens me, quite frankly, and makes me feel a whole lot less proud to be an American as I sit here today. I just cant help but wonder, when will the US’s luck run out? The proof is on the table, we have meddled in the affairs of and seemingly overthrown half the worlds leaders just to suit our own political interests. Surely it is only a matter of time before all our “interference” and “meddling” in other countries political affairs will come back to haunt us – right Russia?

New Hacking Group Known as Karamujo Official Claims Responsibility for 5 Hacks Across North & South America

No photo description available.

Over the course of the last several days/weeks a new hacking group has been attracting my attention, which they now have. The group officially refers to themselves as “Karamujo” aka “#SST Stealers Team” and at least on the surface level, appear to have no discernible nationality amoungst themselves – nor commonality between their targets. The group also has an extremely unique style when it comes to leaking information, the type of information they leak and the manner in which they leak it – all styles/techniques I have never seen assembled like this before, which also goes to tell you a little something about them.

Considering that I’ve never covered them before and Defcon Lab has already covered their other hacking campaigns last week, for the purposes of this article I would like to cover 5 of their most recent and highest profile attacks – targeting various institutions and organization across North and South America.

Geographic Military Institute of Ecuador: hxxp://

[+] FTP:
[+] LEAK: (By @SSTowna)

Brasilian Institute of Geographic Statistics: hxxps://
[FILES]: (via @DebochadoSST)

City Hall of Rio de Janeiro: hxxp://

Virtual Library of The Constitutional Court of Ecuador: hxxp://

Pryzraky Hackers Responsible for 39 International Hacks, Leaks & DDoS Attacks Over The Last 4 Days

Dating back to the weekend, “Pryzraky” hackers have been extremely active in a number of hacks, leaks and DDoS attacks targeting Government institutions in and around Europe, United States, United Kingdom and South America. However, while their hacks have primarily been carried out under the banners of #OpAssange, #OpEcuador and #OpUK, Pryzraky is doing as much as possible to distance themselves from the Anonymous hacker collective, whom been extremely active in publicizing these operations online.

All told, group members “Mecz1nho Markov” (@Mecz1nho), “Alne3737” (@Al1ne3737) and “PopTart” are responsible for a 39 cyber attacks over the last 4 days, including attacks targeting the Association of Police Investigators (Brasil), International Police (France), Department of Defense (USA) and National Police Association of the United Kingdom – with some attack bringing websites down for days at a time. A full list of their attacks is chronicled below.


Association of Civilian Police Investigators: hxxp://
Faculdade Integrada Tiradentes: hxxp://
Data Download:

[Target]: hxxps://

DDoS Attacks:

International Police (INTERPOL) – hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)
US Department of Defense (DoD) – hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)
UK National Police – hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)
Supreme Court of The United Kingdom – hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)

SQLi Injection Vulnerabilities:





#FreeAssange: Attacks Against Ecuadorian Infrastructure Carry On Into The Weekend

No photo description available.

On April 12th 2019, in what would go on to become one of my most read articles in weeks, Rogue Media Labs documented a string of ongoing cyber attacks targeting the Government of Ecuador and Ecuadorian infrastructure worldwide. However, as it would turn out, these attacks weren’t just limited to the 11th and 12th, but have instead evolved into something greater – with even larger and more pronounced attacks occurring throughout the course of the weekend. The attacks themselves are now being carried out under the banners of “Operation Ecuador” (#OpEcuador) and “Operation Assange” (#OpAssange), with promises to continue the attacks well into the foreseeable future.

I’ve done my best to document most of them, but I am certain I did not catch them all. If you would like to learn more, you are invited to follow the operations hashtags on Twitter as they are featured above.

Learn More About Last Weeks Attacks:

CYB3R C0V3N S3CURITY (@Cyb3rC0v3nSec):

Superior Educational Consultants: hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)
Ecuadorian Consulate of Los Angels: hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)
Ecuadorian Consulate of Chicago: hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)
Ecuadorian Embassy of Malaysia: hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)
Ecuadorian Consulate of Houston: hxxp:// (Tango Downd)
Ecuadorian Embassy of Venezuela: hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)

Iznaye Cyber Team (@Iznaye):

Secretary of Environment: hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)
Ecuadorian Council of The Judiciary: hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)
Municipal GAD of Latacunga: hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)
Colegio Jimirwin: hxxp:// (Hacked)
Ombudsman of Ecuador: hxxp:// (Hacked/Leaked)
Universidad Técnica del Norte: hxxp:// (Hacked/Leaked)

Tapi Combat Educational Unit: hxxp://
Data Leak:

Fiscomisional Educational Unit of San Jose: hxxp://
Data Leak:

Educational University of Hispanic Americans: hxxp://
Data Leak:

Municipal del Cantón Sucúa: hxxp://
Deface Mirror:

Target: hxxp://
BombersValencia Leak:

Target: hxxp://

Pryzraky (@Pryzraky):

Ecuadorian Embassy of The United Kingdom: hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)

Ecuadorian Military Intelligence: hxxps://
Ecuadorian Internal Revenue Service: hxxp://
Cooperative CREA: hxxp://

Empresa Eléctrica Regional del Sur: hxxps://
Database Leak:


Ecuadorian National Police: hxxp:// (Deface)
Ecuadorian Embassy of Ukraine: hxxp:// (Defaced)
Central Bank of Ecuador: hxxp:// (Tango Down’d)

FBI Mail Servers:
CF-RAY: 4c751ebe4e98a875-CDG

Broadcast IP’s : (Leaked)

Liceo Military: hxxp:// (Defaced)

Ecuadorian University Leaks:

Ecuador’s School of the Judicial Function: hxxps://
Data Leak:
Leak Backup:

#OpEcuador Hit List:

And perhaps most importantly of all, I know it’s the burning question on everyone’s mind, but have no fears, Julian Assange’s cat is indeed safe!

Hacktivists Team Up To Hack, Deface, Leak or Crash 39 Ecuadorian Websites Within First 24 Hours After Assange’s Arrest

At this point it should go without saying, but yesterday morning the Ecuadorian Embassy  in London decided against continuing Julian Assange’s protection/asylum and he is now going to be extradited to stand trial in the United States – where he faces life in prison. While every news outlet between here and the moon has already done their own spinoff story on these developments, what I haven’t seen anyone else covering is the response from at least some of the hacking/cyber security community – so this is what I will attempt to do here today.

First off, the very reason why Wikileaks founder was arrested yesterday was most likely for his open support for a number of leaked documents implicating Ecuador’s President recently – likely leaked for his decision to put so much pressure on Julian Assange in the first place over recent weeks. The leaked cache of documents in question is officially referred to as the INA Papers – which you can browse in their entirety below.

Browse INA Papers Leak:

With that established, within the first 24 hours of Assange’s arrest different hackers from all around the world appear to have teamed up together to launch a massive and coordinated series of cyber attacks against the Ecuadorian Government and its infrastructure. While it would be impossible to find them all, here is everything I was able to research – 39 different targets of hacks, leaks, defaces and/or DDoS attacks April 11th-12th 2019. Among the participants were Anonymous, LulzSec, Pryzraky, CYB3R C0V3N and many more.


Target: hxxps://

Target: hxxp://
Deface Mirror:

Target: hxxp://

Tango Downed:

Ecuadorian Embassy of the United Kingdom: hxxp://
Ecuadorian Consulate of Chicago: hxxp://
Official Guide of Protocols & Procedures of the State of Ecuador: hxxp://
National Institute of Investigation: hxxp://

Targets w/ SQLi Vulnerabilities:

Press Releases:


More Information:

Ecuadorian Burger King Databases Hacked by Take Down Root, +155,000 Clients Effected

In news first brought to my attention via Defcon Lab, a hacking group going by the name of “Take Down Root” has claimed responsibility for a massive hack of Burger King, effecting franchise chains throughout the country of Ecuador. In a posting on, an underground social media aggregator similar in many ways to Facebook, the group announced that have successfully hacked the data of well over 150,000 clients belonging to fast food chains online web portals.

According to the hackers, they managed to steal approximately 4.1 Gigabytes (GB) of data attached to a MongoDB web server hosted by in Scottsdale, Arizona – apparently where the franchise choose to host their data. All told, approximately 155,645 customers throughout Ecuador were effected, revealing information such as their unique identification numbers, full names, passwords and email addresses.

Image may contain: food and text

While the hackers declined to publicly release the data of each and every client effected, they did release screen shots from their activity whilst inside the database, as well as a small sample of 1,000 clients through the Pastebin web service.

Server IP:
Data Leak of 1,000 Clients:

Screen Shot from Inside Database:

No photo description available.

Wikileaks Releases “US Embassy Shopping List,” +16,000 Procurement Requests/Documents Released from US Embassies Worldwide

Less than 24 hours after Twitter locked Julian Assange and Wikileaks staff members out of their online accounts, perhaps in anticipation of this very event, Wikileaks announced the release their latest leak. Officially entitled “US Embassy Shopping List,” the leak contains access to a searchable database of over 16,000 procurement requests posted/received by United States embassies around the world. While the majority of documents are rather mundane in nature, some of them shed light on some very interesting material/topics, including the US’s sponsorship of mass surveillance programs and operations – documenting the distribution of spy equipment to various countries around the world.

Not only do the documents shed light into what the US Government does with at least some of its seemingly endless foreign aid, it also shows the true extent to which so many countries and Governments around the world are utterly dependent on US assistance – having to suckle at the US Government’s tit for even the most basic of jobs/tasks. About the leak, as was explained by Wikileaks in a press release dated December 21st 2018:

All US embassies post requests for quotations and job listings on their websites when they need to purchase goods or services. In some cases, these requests may hint at covert activities performed by US agencies in the country. For example, in an August 2018 procurement request forTactical Spy Equipment,the US embassy in El Salvador asked vendors to provide 94 spy cameras, most disguised as everyday objects such as ties, caps, shirt buttons, watches, USB drives, lighters, and pens. Similar spy cameras were also requested by the US embassy in Colombia.

The majority of the procurement requests focus on mundane activities required for the day-to-day operation of embassies and consulates, such as construction projectslaundry service, and gutter cleaning. In one case, the US consulate in Guayaquil, Ecuador lost track of the number of fish in its fishpond and needed someone to count the fish and clean the pond. Interspersed among these banal requests are documents that provide insight into the priorities and agenda of the US Government abroad. For example, to promote trade interests in China, the US consulate in Shanghai requested the production of “three marketing and promotional videos that highlight U.S. beef quality”.

Even the banal requests may be worth scrutiny because numerous secret programmes are operated out of US embassies. WikiLeaks’ Vault 7 publications showed that the CIA’s Center for Cyber Intelligence runs a covert hacking base out of the US consulate in Frankfurt and the documents disclosed by Edward Snowden revealed that the NSA and CIA jointly operate a covert signals intelligence programme called the Special Collection Service, which uses US embassies around the world as bases for interception of communications and clandestine operations. These procurement documents do not appear to include details related directly to these programmes, but they do include information about the actual activities of the divisions used as cover for CIA programmes, note which jobs require security clearance, and provide clues about the existence of infrastructure that may be potentially useful to US intelligence services operating abroad, such as the data center at the Frankfurt consulate.

While these procurement requests are public information, they are only temporarily linked to from US embassy websites while the request is open. But even after the links to the requests are removed, the files remain online. This is because all US embassies use WordPress and the procurement documents are stored in their WordPress uploads folder. So although older procurement documents may not be obviously available, the WordPress uploads can be searched via both the search function on the embassy’s website and third-party search engines. The US Embassy Shopping List preserves these requests and makes them more accessible by collecting the documents uploaded to US embassy websites, filtering for the procurement-related files, and presenting them in a searchable database.

Browse Entire Procurement Database Here:

Department of Justice Accidentally Leaks Expected Charges Against Julian Assange

In one of the most bizarre story-lines you will ever come across, 100% ironically, the United States Department of Justice has just “leaked” a partial list of expected charges to be filed against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange once his asylum inside the Ecuadorian Embassy comes to an end. The accident came in conjunction with the release of a now once again already sealed document Thursday, November 15th 2018, outlining the DoJ’s upcoming court case against Seitu Sulayman Kokayi – whom will soon be facing charges of sexual misconduct. More specifically, Kokayi will be charged with “violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2242(b).

However, pages 2 and 3 of the 3 page document shift from Kokayi’s case to begin outlining charges expected to be filed against Julian Assange. Given their mistake, the document featured below has already been “re-sealed/redacted.” But in statements to The Daily Beast, the DoJ admits to their mistake, explaining how its suspected that someone working in their offices made a clerical filing error, or accidentally copy and pasted portions of Assanges case onto Kokayi’s – because the two men will essentially be facing at least some similar charges.

As the document contained below outlines:

3. The United States has considered alternatives less drastic than sealing, including, for example, the possibility of redactions, and has determined that none would suffice to protect this investigation. Another procedure short of sealing will not adequately protect the needs of law enforcement at this time because, due to the sophistication of the defendant and the publicity surrounding the case, no other procedure is likely to keep confidential the fact that Assange has been charged.


4. The Court has the inherent power to seal charging documents. United States
V. Wuagneux. 683 F.2d 1343, 1351 (11″‘ Cir. 1982); State of Arizona v. Mavpennv. 672 F.2d 761, 765 (9″^ Cir. 1982); Times Mirror Comnanv v. United States. 873 F.2d 1210 (9″‘ Cir. 1989); see also Shea v. Gabriel. 520 F.2d 879 (U* Cir. 1975); United States v. Hubbard. 650 F.2d 293 (D.C. Cir. 1980); In re Brauehton. 520 F.2d 765, 766 (9″^ Cir. 1975). “The trial court has supervisory power over its own records and may, in its discretion, seal documents if the public’s right of access is outweighed by competing interests.” In re Knight Pub. Co.. 743 F.2d 231, 235 (4″^ Cir. 1984). Sealing charging documents is appropriate where there is a substantial probability that the release of the sealed documents would compromise the government’s ongoing investigation severely. S^ e^g. In re Search Warrant for Secretarial Area Outside Office of Gunn. 855 F.2d 569, 574 (8″^ Cir. 1988); Matter of Eve Care Phvsicians of America. 100 F.3d 514, 518 (7″‘ Cir. 1996); Matter of Flower Aviation of Kansas. Inc.. 789 F.Supp. 366 (D. Kan. 1992).

UNDER SEAL (Local Rule 49(B)(3))

5. The complaint, supporting affidavit, and arrest warrant, as well as this motion and the proposed order, would need to remain sealed until Assange is arrested in connection with the charges in the criminal complaint and can therefore no longer evade or avoid arrest and extradition in this matter.

6. Upon occurrence of the event specified in paragraph 8, pursuant to Local Rule 49(B)(3), the sealed materials will be automatically unsealed and handled as such. WHEREFORE, the United States respectfully requests that the criminal complaint, the supporting affidavit, and the arrest warrant in this matter, as well as this Motion to Seal and proposed Order, be sealed until further order of the Court.

Full Accidental Leak from DOJ – See pg’s 2 & 3:

[pdf-embedder url=””%5D

Data Servers, Country of Origin & Sound Cyber Security

The other day I sent out a “Tweet” and proceeded to lose 30% of my combined followers, literally overnight. The Tweet explained how the 53rd Street Library in New York City had expressed weariness over allowing me to instruct or teach lessons at their facility after coming to the realization I work with and source a great deal of my content through international partners. I had cracked the joke; “Rogue Security is getting the Kaspersky treatment? Must be moving up in the world?…

For those of you who might not be familiar with the backdrop or sarcasm expressed here, Kaspersky Lab has recently become one of the most polarizing names in cyber security dating back to the 2016 US Presidential election. This is because many people have come to believe that the Kremlin deliberately altered Russian Law in order to corrupt/compromise Russian based businesses, which Kaspersky is, into handing over confidential information relating to customer databases. Moreover, considering that Kaspersky Lab was one of the most widely utilized software developers purchased by US Government employees and contractors over the years, it is now believed that Kaspersky Lab itself was one of the key players behind the whole Russian hacking election fiasco – whether they voluntarily intended to be or not. For this very reason, dating back to December 2017, all Kaspersky products have since been banned on the Federal level and their software has been pulled off the shelves of stores including Staples and Best Buy – though their products still remain legal on the civilian level.

However, it must be noted that what the Kremlin did is nothing new. In fact, this practice has been employed by the United States Government for far longer. You might be surprised to know that it is 100% illegal for any computer, privacy or cyber security company based out of the US to refuse to hand over their data, servers or customer records to the US Government, provided those servers and data are stored within United States borders. Believe it or not, it is even illegal for US based businesses operating servers/companies overseas to refuse to hand over their data if requested by US authorities. While Microsoft is currently taking this obligation to the Supreme Court, throughout the course of 2016 and 2017 multiple lower courts have upheld the US Governments right to demand this information. Not only this, but the acting attorney General, Jeff Sessions, has also vowed to make unfettered end-to-end encryption illegal as long as he is in office.

Therefore, at least when it comes to your data privacy, claiming that “those Russians” are any better or any worse than “those Americans” is nothing more than farcical, and your information is no more protected in the hands of The White House than it is the Kremlin. So, no matter how strong your sense of Patriotism or Nationalistic pride may be, the fact of the matter remains that your computer isn’t more secure just because you buy from an American company. In fact, you might be surprised to know that multiple independent tests and studies have confirmed Kaspersky Lab is the most secure software platform for Windows based devices, and other studies list Microsoft’s own platforms as the worst. Moreover, there is a very real reason none of the world’s top privacy/security companies host their services inside US territories.

With that established, let’s take a closer look at some of the other most notable countries in the field of cyber security these days.

Dont Necessarily Buy Into The Swiss Hype

Over the course of the last 3-4 years one of the biggest trends I’ve noticed is all of the “hype” surrounding Switzerland and their world renown reputation for protecting business privacy and confidentially. Traditionally, Switzerland has acquired this reputation for protecting foreign investors within their banking systems. However, it must be noted that the same protections afforded/granted to the multi-billion dollar banking system are not necessarily extend to the cyber security industry, and you can bet your ass that you are never going to get the same level of privacy or protection from the Swiss Government for your $50 a year VPN connection or email account that an investor is going to get for their multi-million dollar bank account – get it? Any thought to the contrary is just, well, dumb – really.

For lack of a better term, in 2018 it is a generally known fact that many companies are simply trying “bank” on Switzerland’s historic reputation and turn it into a few extra dollars for their cyber security companies. This is not to say however that there are not some top notch countries currently operating out of Switzerland.

In fact, for the very laws as they now exist inside Russia, Eugene Kaspersky has vowed to move all of his companies servers out of Russia and into Switzerland to provide his customers with a greater level transparency in hopes of regaining their trust. Other companies such as ProtonMail and Tutanota also operate out of Switzerland and are two of cyber securities most trusted vendors. Many of the industry’s top VPN service providers also operate their servers out of Switzerland. As always though, do your research and just be weary/cautious of all new tech startups in the country.

Don’t Trust The Netherlands

The Netherlands really started to lose the trust of the cyber security community dating back to 2016, following the closing of GhostMail email servers and a series of raids on VPN service providers around the country. Dutch authorities have remained quite about their recent change of policy, but prior to 2016 the Netherlands was considered by many to be one of the worlds fastest growing and most trusted names in cyber security/digital privacy. Because of this, the underground hacking community has long since speculated that the Dutch Government was ultimately pressured to crack down on digital privacy providers following a joint effort undertaken by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation and European Police (EUROPOL), whom had essentially had enough of criminals and/or terrorists taking advantage of security platforms operated out of the country. Fast forward into 2018, while there are still a few legacy companies operating out of the country, almost all new startups know not to do business there.

In March of 2018 I personally reached out to GhostCom Ltd, the original founders of Ghostmail, for comment on their closing and the true extend of the operation undertaken by Dutch/International police, but their legal team has declined any comments to this day.

Belgium & Ecuador Offer The Strongest Privacy Protections In The World

Ecuador is world renown for protecting digital privacy, internet rights and international freedom fighters. This is not only evidenced by Julian Assanges continued political asylum, Ecuador has also granted asylum to some of the worlds most elite and dangerous hackers over the course of the last several decades. By now, it is a well known fact that the Government of Ecuador is willing to do more than almost anyone else to shelter/protect political activists and members of the digital underground, helping them to continue doing what they are do safely and securely. For example, despite all of the “hoopla” surrounding Wikileaks, the Ecuadorian Government actually controls 100% of Julian Assanges internet connectivity. Yet, have you ever heard of any one of Assanges sources being compromised over the years? That is also exactly my point. For all these reasons, Ecuador is considered one of, if not the most trustworthy country in the world when it relates to data privacy and cyber security related practices.

Belgium on the other hand has a legal system in place which ensures Government accountability and restricts potential abuses of privacy/authority. This is because every request, subpoena or warrant for information, data, servers and digital accounts made in Belgium must first be brought in front of a judge, officially in court, and proven to be valid or legitimate before any Belgium authorities can have access to it. In other countries such as the United States for example, Federal employees can simple print out a file document, sign your name onto it and automatically have the right to search your accounts – it’s literally that easy for them. For this very reason, Belgium is considered to be one the most trustworthy and accountable countries in the world to do cyber security business with, leading the way in terms of informational security. On a side note, if I was a betting man, I would expect to see many more privacy/cyber security companies start popping up all over Belgium throughout the course of the next 5-10 years, especially given all of the recent changes/overhauls to internet/data laws now being enforced by the European Union.

Colombia On The Up & Up?

This really has nothing to do with computer security, it’s just a growing trend you might have started to pick up on recently. Starting around 2015, first led by small time internet activists and Anonymous, more and more website owners across the world began shifting or creating new domains with .co – this was done for a multitude of reasons. First off, .co is often times much cheaper than .com domains. Second, it is becoming harder and harder to find an original, unique or appropriate .com domain for your business, third because more people associate the word “company” with .co instead of .com, and lastly, .co helps make your website that much more unique and stand out from the crowd – which can be an asset in today’s overcrowded online marketplace.

As for Colombia itself, I think the rise of the .co domain only helps the country look that much more innovative comparatively to the rest of the world, which is why the Colombian Government has never really pushed back on all the international vendors registering new domains through their country, including myself.