Nokia selling surveillance to police states-Access Now!

October 28, 2010

Say No to Nokia!

Access Now!: October 14, 2010


One of the world’s most prestigious technology brands, Nokia Siemens, has been engaging in a dirty trade: selling surveillance technology to repressive regimes. Under pressure last year from Access and other organizations, their executives were forced to finally admit their technology was used to “suppress dissent” in Iran, but despite their PR spin, Nokia Siemens hasn’t really changed.

Nokia Siemens still has “technical contractual links” with its old human tracking business, many senior staff who were at Nokia Siemens have simply transferred to the private and unaccountable holding company that Nokia Siemens hurriedly offloaded their surveillance technology business to, and this month, they are immorally defending themselves in court against an innocent Iranian journalist who was reportedly hunted down using Nokia’s technology.


Nokia Siemens is doing damage control. Sign the petition below to tell Nokia Siemens that none of us, including their customers, accept their claims of innocence, and we’ll take our global petition to where it counts — their shareholders, their management, and their governments:

Read this on Nokia Siemens’ website: “In cases where the company has previously provided networks, products and/or services in Iran, the company would be willing to accept contract extensions … “! How can they turn a blind eye to the abuses perpetrated by this regime just for profit?

It gets worse, despite their denials, the technology Nokia Siemens sold to Iran has the capacity to intercept text messages and internet traffic – not just voice communications, as they claim (we’ve tracked down the product brochure). And what of the other 59 countries that Nokia has sold its dirty technology to? Enough is enough. Say No to Nokia and their friends by adding your name to this petition, and take a stand against the trafficking of human surveillance technology:

The impact of this sort of technology is real: Isa Saharkhiz has now been in jail for 14 months, his ribs have been broken and he’s 50 pounds lighter than when he was picked up. Amnesty International has called Isa ” a prisoner of conscience” and the UN has called his imprisonment “arbitrary” and called for his “immediate and unconditional release.” Still Nokia Siemens is denying any responsibility for his arrest, suggesting that Isa and his son Mehdi are suing “the wrong party, and on the wrong premise.”

Knowingly selling surveillance technology to a regime that is renowned for human rights abuses should be illegal. While we’ve yet to win in the court of law, let’s make sure we win now in the court of public opinion. We know one thing works with these companies: naming, shaming, and regulating. Join us in saying ‘No to Nokia’, and we’ll stand firm against their shareholders, their management and their governments:

Trade in these underground technologies is far less likely when it’s exposed. Now the spotlight is on; let’s set a precedent for other companies who engage in the sale of interception technologies and help to ensure that democracy movements and human rights defenders aren’t hunted down and trapped for simply using their mobile phones.

With hope,
The Access Team



Amnesty International. (2009, July 6). Document-Iran: Disappeared journalist at risk of torture: Issa Saharkhiz. Retrieved October 11, 2010 from:

Farrar, J. (2010, August 20). Nokia Siemens Networks respond to Iran human rights abuses claims. Retrieved October 11, 2010 from:

Lake, E. (2009, April 13). Fed contractor, cell phone maker sold spy system to Iran. The Washington Times. Retrieved October 5, 2010 from:

Madari, S. (2009, July 18). Nokia Siemens monitoring system: Action to disrupt the monitoring system used by the Iranian regime. Retrieved October 5, 2010 from:

New information technologies and human rights: Hearing before the Subcommittee on Human Rights. 7th European Parliament. (2010, June 2). (Testimony of Barry French, Nokia Siemens Network Executive Board Member and Head of Marketing and Corporate Affairs). Retrieved October 5, 2010 from:

Nokia Siemens Networks. (2010). Corporate responsibility: Privacy and human rights. Retrieved October 6, 2010 from:

Nokia Siemens Networks. (2010, August 20). Response to lawsuit filed by Isa and Mehdi Saharkhiz against Nokia Siemens Networks [Press Statement]. Retrieved October 5, 2010 from:

Nokia Siemens Networks. (2007). Intelligence solution monitoring center: Keep your eyes open [Brochure]. Available at:

Sharooz, K. (2010, August 28). Suing repression’s service provider: Nokia Siemens, meet the Alien Tort Statute – a U.S. detour for justice. PBS. Retrieved October 11, 2010 from:

Trovicor GmbH. (2010). Company History. Retrieved October 11, 2010 from:


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