Corporate espionage tactics used against progressive groups, activists and whistleblowers

Discussion in 'Freedom of Expression' started by The Wrong Guy, Dec 6, 2013.

  1. The Wrong Guy Member

    12 Corporate Espionage Tactics Used Against Leading Progressive Groups, Activists and Whistleblowers

    Corporate spies for Dow, Kraft and others have tried to discredit, shame and infiltrate civic groups using an array of dirty tricks.

    By Steven Rosenfeld, December 3, 2013

    Posing as volunteers. Stealing documents. Dumpster diving. Planting electronic bugs. Hacking computers. Tapping phones and voicemail. Planting false information. Trailing family members. Threatening reporters. Hiring cops, CIA officers and combat veterans to do all these dirty deeds—and counting on little pushback from law enforcement, mainstream media or Congress.

    These are some of the ways that many of America’s largest corporations have spied on nonprofits for years, according to a detailed new report from the Center for Corporate Policy tracing decades of corporate espionage where tactics developed for American intelligence agencies have been imported by a long list of corporate giants for use against progressives.

    “The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Walmart, Monsanto, Bank of America, Dow Chemical, Kraft, Coca-Cola, Chevron, Burger King, McDonald’s, Shell, BP, BEA, Sasol, Brown & Williamson and E.ON have all been linked to espionage against non-profit organizations, activists and whistleblowers,” the report said, noting that its targets are “environmental, anti-war, public-interest, consumer, food safety, pesticide reform, nursing home reform, gun control, social justice, animal rights and arms-control groups.”

    “There’s so many different tactics,” said Gary Ruskin, the center’s director and the report’s author. “It’s so important to talk about the effects on our democracy and privacy. Civic groups can’t work if they’re surrounded by serious espionage activities. And citizens don’t lose their rights to privacy if they disagree with corporations.”

    Compared to Europe, where some of the same corporate players — and their staff or hired guns — have landed in court, been shamed in the media and even given jail terms, spying against non-profits has flourished with little legal consequence in America. The Justice Department almost never investigates. Nor does Congress look at the practice, which clearly would be illegal with its break-ins, thefts, threats, slander and racketeering.

    “If corporate espionage is done with impunity, or near impunity, it invites more corporate espionage,” Ruskin said. “The Department of Justice needs to investigate and prosecute where warranted, and Congress needs to hold hearings.”

    AlterNet counted a dozen dirty tactics and trends used by corporate spies, whether inside “security” or “threat-assessment” staff, or a mix of outside public relations and law firms and other covert operations specialists. These trends start at the most basic level, like pretending to be a volunteer, but escalate to cyber warfare and even blackmail.

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  2. The Internet Member

    That web site won't let me see more than the first page, probably because there's a big pop up wanting me to subscribe to something. Can you link to the "see as 1 page" version?
  3. The Wrong Guy Member

    You should see the page after you click on the red X on the top right of the popup. (The Raw Story site now has the same popup, and I have yet to be able to get it to disappear.)
  4. The Internet Member

    I don't see a red x on that "Join Emily's List" popup.

    I notice a link to a fecal transplant article at the bottom. Lol, maybe this unproven thing is getting promoted everywhere because people think poop is funny.
  5. Thanks op.
    ALEC had a load of docs leaked this week.
    I only mention alec because it is funded by some of the above companies.
  6. Anonymous Member

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