News / Science & Technology

Sochi Games Present Hacking Minefield

File - The Olympic rings are cast in shadow as the sun sets behind the Bolshoy Ice Palace as preparations continue at the Olympic Park for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, Feb. 3, 2014.
File - The Olympic rings are cast in shadow as the sun sets behind the Bolshoy Ice Palace as preparations continue at the Olympic Park for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, Feb. 3, 2014.

Related Articles

Multimedia Rising Cost of Olympics Begs Question: Why Host?

As Russia spends more than $50 billion to stage Sochi Winter Games, some question if that kind of expenditure really is worth it

Moody's: Olympic Games Unlikely to Boost Russian Economy

Prediction by ratings agency undermines one of President Vladimir Putin's main goals at the Games

Russia Seeks Olympic Comeback With Sochi Games

Analysts say after failed 1980 Moscow Olympics, Putin hopes Sochi will boost Russia's appeal
The U.S. State Department is warning Americans traveling to the Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia, not to expect much in the way of privacy.

Specifically, the State Department says travelers should not expect privacy when using electronic devices because of the "System for Operative Investigative Activities," commonly known as "SORM," law.

That law, according to the State Department, “permits the monitoring, retention and analysis of all data that traverses Russian communications networks, including fax transmissions, telephone calls, internet browsing and e-mail messaging.”

Russia is also a hotspot for criminal hackers who have proved very adept at stealing information from electronic devices.

"The Russian SORM, coupled with the Russian organized crime presence, one should expect that any electronic device usage will have little if any privacy, said Christopher Burgess, CEO of Prevendra, Inc., an Internet security firm. “I recommend visitors use throw-away cell phones for contact and do not engage in electronic banking. Your data is  being shared."

Last year, the State Department’s Bureau of Diplomatic Security advised travelers to “consider traveling with ‘clean’ electronic devices—if you do not need the device, do not take it.”

Furthermore, they advised removing “all personal identifying information” and to remove or sanitize sensitive files.

Wi-Fi connections should be turned off “at all times,” according to the State Department.

“Do not check business or personal electronic devices with your luggage at the airport. Do not connect to local ISPs at cafes, coffee shops, hotels, airports, or other local venues. Change all your passwords before and after your trip,” State warned.

The State Department said to “assume any electronic device you take can be exploited.”

You May Like

For Lebanon-based Refugees, Desperation Fuels Perilous Passage

In a war that has caused an estimated three million people to flee Syria, efforts to make perilous sea journey in search of asylum expected to increase More

South African Brewer Tackles Climate Change

Mega-brewer SAB Miller sent delegates to climate summit in Peru, says it is one of many private companies taking their own steps to fight climate change More

Indonesia Reports Increase in Citizens Joining Islamic State

Officials say more than 350 of its citizens are now in Syria or Iraq to fight with Islamic State - 50 more than last month More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Anonymous
February 06, 2014 5:08 PM
"...not to expect much in the way of privacy"
Americans DO have a sense of humor. Now go and fix your government.


by: Marlena from: UK
February 05, 2014 9:04 PM
why would ANYONE want to go and see this level of depravity..?? risking so much for what exactly..?? you are a fool if you even consider the venture...

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countriesi
X
December 16, 2014 2:14 PM
Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video Turkey's Authoritarianism Dismays Western Allies

The Turkish government has been defiant in the face of criticism at home and abroad for its raids targeting opposition media. The European Union on Monday expressed dismay after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lashed out at Brussels for criticizing his government's action. Turkey's bid to be considered for EU membership has been on hold while critics accuse the NATO ally of increasingly authoritarian rule. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video US-China Year in Review: Hong Kong to Climate Change

The United States is pushing for a code of conduct to resolve territorial disputes in the South China Sea as it works to improve commercial ties with Beijing. VOA State Department correspondent Scott Stearns reports on a year of U.S. policy toward China from Hong Kong to climate change.
Video

Video Japanese Leader’s Election Win Raises Potential for Conflict with Neighbors

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his allies easily won a two-thirds majority in parliament Sunday, even though the country has slipped into recession under his conservative policies. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Seoul, that the prime minister’s victory will empower him to continue economic reforms but also pursue a nationalist agenda that will likely increase tensions with Japan’s neighbors.
Video

Video Nuba Mountain Families Hide in Caves to Escape Aerial Bombings

Despite ongoing peace talks between Sudan's government and the rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North, or SPLM-N, daily aerial attacks continue in South Kordofan province’s Nuba Mountains. Adam Bailes was there and reports for VOA that government forces are targeting civilian areas, rather than military positions, with their daily bombardments.
Video

Video Indonesian Province to Expand Sharia Law

Indonesia has the world’s largest Muslim population and a legal system based on Dutch civil law and Indonesian government regulations. But in a 2001 compromise with separatists, Aceh province in Sumatra island’s north was allowed to implement Sharia law. Since then, religious justice has become increasingly strict. VOA correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh.
Video

Video Some Russian Businesses Thrive in Poor Economy

Capital flight, the fall in oil prices and Western sanctions are pushing Russia's staggering economy into recession. But not companies are suffering. The ruble’s drop in value has benefited exporters as well as businesses targeting increasingly frugal customers. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.

All About America

AppleAndroid