In February, visitors from around the world will gather in Sochi, Russia for the 2014 Winter Olympics — and according to a new report published in The Guardian, they'll be greeted by one of the most invasive web surveillance systems in the world. The new documents, unearthed by a team of Russian journalists in collaboration with Citizen Lab, shine a light on Russia's plans to fight back against recent protest actions by digging into the online activities of everyone in the region. From there, state agencies will be able to search for specific keywords they deem suspicious, a set-up one analyst described as "PRISM on steroids."
Russia's deep packet inspection system has been detailed before, but the new documents show just how quickly the system is being built out, with major upgrades being made to both phone and Wi-Fi networks in preparation for the influx of Olympic visitors. As journalist Andrei Soldatov put it, "Russian authorities want to make sure that every connection and every move made online in Sochi during the Olympics will be absolutely transparent to the secret services of the country."