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The Indian city of Mumbai hopes to fight terrorism by installing keyloggers

All Internet cafes in the Indian city of Mumbai will have police-sanctioned key-logger software installed on their machines to help combat terrorism.  With a population of 13 million residents, cafe owners only in the city of Mumbai will be forced to install the software.

All cafe owners will be forced to register and receive a city license from police headquarters, reveal the number of PCs located in the location and Internet protocol (IP) addresses for all of the PCs.  Any cafe owners who do not register can be fined, with harsher punishments possible.

The announcement follows bombings in Hyderabad and Mumbai that were reportedly organized in Internet cafes.

"The police needs to install programs that will capture every key stroke at regular interval screen shots, which will be sent back to a server that will log all the data," said Vijay Mukhi, India Foundation for Information Security and Technology president.  "The police can then keep track of all communication between terrorists no matter which part of the world they operate from. This is the only way to patrol the net and this is how the police informer is going to look in the e-age," he added.

Privacy experts and bloggers around the world point out different methods criminals can use to remain anonymous.  A CNET blog indicates the use of proxy servers and Tor could be two potentially popular methods to get around the keyloggers.

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Red herring...
By TomCorelis on 9/11/2007 2:31:15 PM , Rating: 2
Looks like terrorists will have to shell out for their own internet connections then--sure internet access may be a bit pricey in India but I'm sure it's easily financed by your average extortion/kidnapping/arms/drug smuggling ring. Oh, the high cost of crime!

How exactly will this combat terrorism again?

RE: Red herring...
By subhajit on 9/11/2007 3:34:00 PM , Rating: 2
What you don't understand is that to get a Internet connection you have to get a landline or use a CDMA/GPRS based service and for either of them you have to register with a valid photo ID card (like passport or voter id). The terrorists are mostly foreign nationals and it's not that easy for them to forge such documents, also they can be traced easily if they are registered users.

RE: Red herring...
By theprodigalrebel on 9/12/2007 9:06:09 AM , Rating: 2
I live in Hyderabad and all I needed to get an Internet connection was a $25 installation fee for the guy to run a cable from the switch to my window.

RE: Red herring...
By myhipsi on 9/12/2007 12:16:34 PM , Rating: 2
I totally agree.

This kind of security measure does nothing to stop terrorism but does everything to take away the average persons right to privacy. It's like the situation with APEC in Sydney, Australia. The government spent $128 million on security. Sydney is in virtual lockdown as a result. As a prank, a bunch of guys from the Aussie show "Chasers war on everything" got within 12 meters of the hotel Pres. Bush was staying in before they got arrested. They did this by pretending to be diplomats from Canada. They got a bunch of black Suburbans and had guys in black suits run along side to make it look "official" and made there way through 3 layers of security until finally being stopped within 12 meters of Bush's hotel. To make the best of it, there was a guy dressed up like Usama Bin Laden in one of the cars. This demonstates that even hundreds of millions spent on security really does nothing to stop a group with the resources and know-how to get though security, not even a group doing it for a joke. Ditto for banning liquids at airports, or making people take their shoes off. It does nothing to stop terrorism.

How about using a laptop with a wireless card to gain access to an unsecured wireless connection, then use a chain of proxies for communication. That's just off the top of my head.

If there's a will, there's a way.

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