During the Standing Rock confrontations, the Electronic Frontier Foundation got reports of police use of IMSI Catchers — secretive surveillance devices used to gather data from nearby cellphones, often called Stingrays or Dirtboxes — so it dispatched lawyers and technologists to monitor the situation, and filed 20 public records requests with law enforcement agencies.
EFF is still waiting to hear from most of these agencies and is also still analyzing its data, but they’re looking for help from water protectors and their allies on the site. Here’s a checklist of things to keep an eye out for if you’re on-site.
We’re continuing to collect incident reports from water protectors on the ground, and we’re keeping an eye out for any signs of cell-site simulator use. If you’re at Standing Rock, here’s a list of potential signs to look out for:
1. Apparent connectivity, but unable to transmit/receive or unusual delay in calls/texts (bars, but service not normal)
2. Unexpected loss of mobile signal (no bars)
3. Sudden mobile phone battery draining
4. Unexpected downgrading in cellular network (4G to 3G, 3G to 2G, etc.)
5. IMSI catcher evidence as detected by software (e.g. AIMSICD, Snoopsnitch)