posted on Nov, 22 2004 @ 02:54 PM
Some of the posters on this thread *do* seem to know what they are talking about, but some of you proably are not....
First of all, Echelon is a *surveiillance network* that captures things in emails, faxtransmissions etc. Echelon has apparently been used for the
benefit of US-based companies and EU did a investigation somewhere back in '98 or '99 regarding Echelon if I remember correctly. (I can try to track
this down for you tomorrow)
Some of you described Echelon as some sort of Internet Spider that seeks out sites at the Internet, which is probably untrue, since it wasn't
designed this way. Some user in this post provided quite a good bunch of links to start reading, which some of you probably should do. (I don't think
some sort of AI is behind it either...probably read too much sci-fi lately, have you? *LoL*)
Carnivore is not Echelon, but was - at least when I read papers on it a couple of years ago - a device (probably a builtin computer with a large
harddisk and fast CPU and NIC together with sniffer SW) that an ISP connects to its trunklines. It functions AFAIK exactly like an IDS would, picking
up traffic in promiscous mode, but instead of finding attacks-patterns like an IDS would it seeks out keywords and/or sessions. (There are a lot of
products out there that ISPs use to gather traffic-info on their customers that have similar functionality anyway)
You could build your own Carnivore unit with a PC and Iris from Eeye if you fancy it... *LoL*
Basically Carnivore is nothing special that some of you may believe, just plain vanilla local network-surveillance.