Unregulated Chinese firms sell IMSI catchers on black market

Unregulated firms are selling International Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI) catchers to oppressive regimes on the black market.
Unregulated firms are selling International Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI) catchers to oppressive regimes on the black market.

Unregulated tech companies are selling IMSI (International Mobile Subscriber Identity) catchers on the black market to oppressive regimes and more.

A representative from a Hong Kong-based tech company, HK Medsourcing, reportedly offered to sell an IMSI catcher for $15,000 to Vice Motherboard reporters posing as businessmen as long as they assured him they were using the device legally.

Under the Wassenaar Arrangement 41 countries require companies that sell surveillance equipment to obtain an export license which prohibits them from selling the technology to private individuals and oppressive regimes. 

However, unregulated Chinese firms are looking to fill the void and have sold to countries that aren't a part of the agreement including Syria, according to Vice's Motherboard.

The Hong Kong-based firm that attempted to sell the equipment to reporters also claimed to have done business with Russia as well and African and South American countries.

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