EUROPEAN POLICE CRACK ENCRYPTED PHONES, ARREST HUNDREDS

Techlife NewsJuly 7, 2020

EUROPEAN POLICE CRACK ENCRYPTED PHONES, ARREST HUNDREDS
European police delivered a major blow to organized crime after cracking an encrypted communications network, allowing them to covertly watch “over the shoulder” of criminals in real-time as they planned drug trafficking, arms sales, assassinations and torture, officers announced.

The massive cross-border probe started in 2017 when French police began investigating phones using the EncroChat secure communication tool and ultimately were able to work around the encryption to gain direct access to users’ communications.

“It was as though we were sitting at the table where criminals were chatting among themselves really,” said Jannine van den Berg, chief of the Dutch National Police Force.

European police and judicial authorities said they expect the investigation to send shockwaves through organized crime gangs across the continent.

The encrypted platform was used by 60,000 people worldwide, including around 10,000 in Britain, British police said. The service pushed a message to all its users on June 13 alerting them that their systems had been breached and urging users to throw away their phones, European Union police agency Europol added.

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July 7, 2020