U.S. citizen sues Ethiopia for allegedly using computer spyware against him

By Craig Timberg

(The Washington Post) A Washington area man with ties to Ethiopia’s political opposition sued that country’s government in federal court Tuesday, alleging that agents had used powerful spyware to hack into his computer and snoop on his private communications for more than four months.

The suit says that forensics experts found more than 2,000 files related to a spyware program called FinSpy, including evidence that it had accessed the Skype calls, e-mails and Web browsing history in violation of U.S. wiretapping laws.

The case is the latest sign that the government of Ethi­o­pia, an American ally with a history of repressing political opponents, journalists and human rights activists, has used sophisticated Internet technology to monitor its perceived enemies, even when they are in other countries.

“The Ethio­pian government appears to be doing everything it can to spy on members of the diaspora, especially those in contact with opposition groups,” said Nate Cardozo, a staff attorney for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a civil liberties group based in San Francisco that prepared the suit. Read more on The Washington Post …

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