Ecuador’s Version of WikiLeaks All But Confirms Rafael Correa is Spying on Opponents

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A new report details just how much Rafael Correa’s government has spied on politicians, journalists, and anyone who’s not with them. Ecuador’s version of Wikileaks, Ecuador Transparente, released 31 documents that pretty definitively prove that Mauricio Rodas (Quito mayor), Mery Zamora (deputy director of Nacional de Unidad Popular), Andrés Páéz (assemblyman for Pichincha Moviemiento CREO), Matt Finer (Amazon Conservation Association’s research specialist), Joke Baert (former communications director of Fundación Pachamama), Sigmund Thies (worked on documentary Los guerreros kichwa y el petróleo), Kevin Koenig (Ecuador program director for Amazon Watch), and María Josefa Coronel (TV anchor) were targeted by Ecuador’s National Secretariat of Intelligence (SENAIN), according to PanAm Post.

The documents include specific details, such as date of birth, marital status, occupational title, and even what they do on social media. One document, for example, chronicles what Rodas did in his first week of office and includes stalker-ish pics. Everything about these documents is cringe worthy. The information was gathered between 2012 to 2014, and though it mostly focuses on those 8 people, there is also some information on 16 others, as well as organization YASunidos – an environmental group that fights for the Huaoranis and their territory. (Currently, indigenous groups are on a 10-day march to Quito to bring their complaints to Correa). A few of those targeted have responded to the 31 documents on Twitter.

A little more digging shows that Correa and his government have teamed up with Milan-based information technology Hacking Team in the past. Last month, a few websites were shut down because of denial-of-service attacks, which happened after they published stories connecting the government to Hacking Team, Global Voices Online reports. Ecuador reportedly spent half a million dollars on a subscription to a software package from Hacking Team, as well as $5.5 million from an Israeli firm in 2012.