So far, the $50 billion Sochi Winter Olympics have been filled with amusing tweets about hotel accommodations, and Russian hackers hitting the journalists. It is so bad, the U.S. State Department has released a memo saying that citizens should have no expectations of privacy while on the ground in Russia. That sounds like the United States. Snowden, hit us with another ugly powerpoint brother.

Richard Engel, NBC’s chief foreign correspondent, teamed up with threat researcher Kyle Wilhoit to test how quickly devices are compromised once landing in Russia. Hate to break it to you, but your devices were already compromised by the NSA, and a whole host of spy agencies. At least Russia is upfront they are spying on its citizens. They don’t hide behind Section 215, or the FISA courts.

Here’s the takeaway on the State Department’s visitor’s guide to the Sochi Olympics.

“Russian Federal law permits the monitoring, retention and analysis of all data that traverses Russian communication networks, including Internet browsing, email messages, telephone calls, and fax transmissions.”

Sounds like the United States, just more upfront about it.

Engel and Wilhoit made up fake profiles on new devices which included a Mac, PC, and an Android smartphone. In a blog post, Wilhoit said that none of the devices had security software installed. So, that makes the systems vulnerable in any country. The smartphone was attacked immediately at a local coffee shop as he browsed the Internet.

Below is the piece from NBC. Wilhoit said via Twitter that the piece was designed for a non-technical audience. There are plans for a more in-depth post on how each system was compromised.


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