In June 2013 the scale of government mass surveillance of agencies, like NSA and GCHQ, were leaked by Edward Snowden. This project intends to raise awareness by designing a fictional monitoring software and its possible consequences. The main aim is to visualize how the surveillance agencies work and how easy a normal citizen with his or her personal data can come into focus of government agencies.
The fictional surveillance software designed, should provide a role reversal with the agencies to understand the dangers posed by the collection of our data.
The leaked surveillance programs of the NSA and GCHQ give an example of global mass surveillance that takes place in most countries. Mass surveillance is targeted at the entire population.
Untargeted mass surveillance affects every single person and represents the biggest part of government surveillance. The programs listed below show which communication channels are used by the NSA/GCHQ to monitor us.
Targeted mass surveillance collects data from criminals, terrorists and even politicians (of other countries). The agencies combine the data of the untargeted surveillance with targeted methods to get as much data of the targeted person as possible. The list below shows that the NSA has considerable access to US internet providers and their data.
The collected data is processed by different information techniques and statistical methods. The resulting information is presented with the help of data visualization programs, to get quick insight and to make further actions possible.
According to the government agencies the main purpose of the government mass surveillance is to prevent and prosecute crime. How far their goals correspond with the mass monitoring of the population is anyone’s guess.
There are ways to protect yourself against mass surveillance or at least complicate the work of the intelligence agencies.
The website is a part of the bachelor thesis "Interface design in government surveillance between fiction and reality" by Christian Laesser. It was created at the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam under the supervision of Prof. Boris Müller and Prof. Dr. Marian Dörk between March and June 2014.
Thanks goes to my supervisors Boris Müller and Marian Dörk for their great help and guidance. Thanks to Sören and Christoph for their help with the video shooting and Lorcan for the voice over. Special thanks goes to Claudia who listens to every thought and helped me out in so many parts of the project. Thanks!
Presskit: Surveillance software (sketches, screens and videos) and Surveillance infomation graphic (Poster)
Contact: Christian Laesser firstname.lastname@example.org [PGP Key]