Cyprus Intelligence Services (KYP ) established contact with Hacking Team like all others, at the Mecca of “lawful” interception, aka ISS Prague.
Contact was established by KYP following ISS Prague 2013 edition:
Following a technical assessment, Hacking Team makes a proposal for €435,000
Further negotiations ensue and a revised quotation is proposed.
KYP authorities mention a third company to be involved.
That third company is U-TX, it is pitching a “potential opportunity in Mexico”. No indication yet as to who could be the second company, but more on that in a moment.
But that opportunity is deemed “unreasonable” by Hacking Team’s America’s Area Manager, It is safe to say this deal went to HT rivals NSO in what appeared to be a multimillion contract with a Mexican Government client.
First visit to Cyprus
Hacking Team travels to Cyprus on July 1st 2013 for a demo. A follow-up email from KYP highlights “The path for a possible and fruitful cooperation benefiting both sides in more than one ways” (sic)
Technical requirements and installation details are discussed between then and October 2013, first payment conditions are negotiated as 20% upon signing the contract, 40% in 2014 and the remaining 40% in 2015:
Delivery is planned for end of December, and a first invoice dated December 9th 2013 needs payment upon reception. It is for €51,000.
However the delivery is missed by KYP. New arrangements are made for January, but Hacking Team cannot travel until late January.
The second company or service Hacking Team met on their first visit to Cyprus was the “Section A” of the Police force.
But in January 2014, that Police section turns down HT , saying “a special intelligence service of our Police already has your solutions and products”
Second visit to Cyprus
Hardware is installed and set-up late January 2014.
A second invoice is sent prior (07th Jan 2014 ), totalling €127,500.
Both these payments were cleared:
In 2014, KYP needs more support, an upgrade and maintenance.
Two new contracts are drafted:
HT 2014–01 (Available in full here )
HT 2014–02 (Available in full here )
2015 sees more training organised, in February. At this stage all invoices are paid and up to date.
Relationships are good, HT invites a 4 person KYP delegation to ISS Prague 2015:
Apparently they had fun.
Last email (above ) is from last week only. The attached invoice is a maintenance extension for €16,875. I wouldn’t bet on it being paid…
The news are evidently still very fresh, but KYP reacted in the usual fashion:
The Cyprus Intelligence Service (KYP) on Wednesday confirmed that it had “in accordance with established practice” strengthened operations with new technical equipment, “following all legal and prescribed procedures”.
The agency had on Tuesday declined to comment on revelations that it had apparently purchased phone surveillance tech from a manufacturer with a poor reputation among privacy advocates.
“This technology is used solely within the national security remit of KYP and the need and importance of maintaining a reliable operational intelligence service due to the circumstances caused by the [Turkish] occupation, but due to modern-day asymmetric threats resulting from the instability in our region.”
“In any case, KYP expresses its readiness, if called upon, to inform the competent committee of the House of Representatives on the issue in question,” Pentaras said.”
EDIT: The head of the Cyprus Intelligence Service (KYP), Andreas Pentaras, has resigned following revelations that the island’s secret service department had purchased spy-hacking software. (Link )