How To Counter NSA Spying, Moscow Style

The NSA rules the internet and wireless communications, listening to everyone 'for their own good'. Naturally those who are often painted as potential or even actual enemies have the most to fear from this blanket surveillance. What's the poor FSO (the successor to the KGB) to do? Simple, go back to technology that is not within the NSA's reach: the good old typewriter.

For all those who have thrown their old typewriters away: the time for regret has finally arrived. 

 

“Got an old typewriter in your garage? Call the Kremlin, they need some.

Russia's Federal Protective Service, a KGB successor agency in charge of protecting President Vladimir Putin and his officials, has placed an order for 20 typewriters and is ready to pay $750 each for them, according to Thursday's report in Izvestia.

The Kremlin-connected daily said the agency, known by its Russian acronym FSO, believes it's necessary to expand the use of typewriters following disclosures of sweeping U.S. National Security Agency surveillance programs by leaker Edward Snowden and earlier publication of classified documents by secret-spilling website WikiLeaks. It said that typewriters have been used in particular for printing drafts of some official documents and reports presented to Putin. The FSO had no comment on the report.”

 

(emphasis added)

 


 

old-typewriterWho knew? Typewriters make an unexpected NSA inspired comeback.

(Image: Wikimedia Commons)

 


 

 

Of course the Russian spooks don't just buy any old typewriter. Quality made in Germany is preferred, according to Der Spiegel:

 

“According to the newspaper, the German model Triumph-Adler Twen 180 is especially popular with Russian intelligence. The German company Olympia confirmed to the news agency DPA that it had made an offer to the Russian government for the 20 typewriters.

The typewriters, which should have Cyrillic and English letter keys, were requested on July 3, and must be delivered by August 30. The typewriters should also have handles to make them easier to transport. In addition to the 20 typewriters, the agency needs 800 ink cartridges for three different types of typewriters.”

 

(emphasis added)

Somewhat aged secure telephone lines first set up in the 1960's are making a comeback as well:

 

“A spokesman for the FSO told the news agency Itar-Tass that old secure telephone lines would also continue to be used for secret conversations between heads of government. The first such line was set up in June 1963, for conversations between the Soviet Union and the United States, he said.”

 

(emphasis added)

Who knows,  jungle drums and smoke signaling equipment might soon be back in fashion too.

 


 

St X Jungle Drums (1)Jungle drum lessons for up-and-coming spooks at the FSO

(Image source unknown, The Web)

 


 

spelling problems Common problems in smoke signaling.

(Image source unknown, The Web)

 


 

 

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5 Responses to “Kremlin Opts for Low-Tech Defense”

  • rossmorguy:

    Oh sorry, we don’t have a mutual mother country. My memory slips from time to time.

  • rossmorguy:

    Wait a second, Jimmy James, I don’t think it was Canada that got James and Molly fleeing the capitol here. It was our mutual mother country. If I remember correctly, the good old USA burned Toronto to the ground first.

    The Tecumseh story is interesting. Did you know that he stamped his foot on the ground just as the New Madrid Fault slipped about thirty feet, convincing a few thousand warriors that he was the real deal?

    BTW rumor has it that the New Madrid Fault may be getting ready to slip again. Which kind of makes sense given that it is, I believe, somehow connected to those volcanoes in Iceland that have been rumbling in recent years.

    Of course, trying to predict when the New Madrid Fault slips and rips the USA in half is about as easy as predicting when this most recent iteration of fiat will blow up. LOL

  • hettygreen:

    I seem to recall there was some military exercise staged by the US in the Persian Gulf region a few years back where the ingenuity of the ‘bad guys’ involved communications using spoken and written word only transmitted by motorcycle courier, cell phones verboten. The bad guys won and, on paper, the carrier strike force became the latest in artificial reef habitat.

    On the subject of the War of 1812 which is lately near and dear to our hearts in these parts Tecumseh’s crew I think it was ran the same group of warriors repeatedly in a loop through a clearing in the woods in full view of Fort Detroit whose command, thinking it was hopelessly outnumbered, promptly surrendered to the much inferior force.

    • jimmyjames:

      On the subject of the War of 1812 which is lately near and dear to our hearts in these parts Tecumseh’s crew I think it was ran the same group of warriors repeatedly in a loop through a clearing in the woods in full view of Fort Detroit whose command, thinking it was hopelessly outnumbered, promptly surrendered to the much inferior force.

      **********

      1812…Back when Canada kicked the USA’s ass- set fire to the white house- had Chicago surrounded-
      The fog of war has a nasty way of sometimes nullifying superior odds-
      Something we in the western world should heed with our expanding military adventures-
      The results of military overreach and debasing gold/money can be seen today in the ruins of south Europe –
      Who knew the basic same sacking of empires would play out yet again in our lifetime-

      Back to 1812.. the best thing to come out of that was the invention of Cajun food.. to die for-

  • rossmorguy:

    This might be part of a strategic defense plan to frustrate an invader. In 1812, they used the winter. In 1942, they used millions of human beings. Today, typewriters and old telephones.

    I never thought there was anything funny about Russia. I should’ve known better. Thanks for the laugh to end my day.

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