This post is not about the Hollywoodized version of government abuse, Enemy of the State.  There, the problem is limited to a handful of insiders who abuse their power.  Sorry.  Reality is much, much worse:

“God Bless America. Now they have EVERY major HVT in CONUS, the UK, Canada, Vegas, Los Angeles, NYC as clients.”
-Fred Burton of STRATFOR, via WIKILEAKS

Who are “they” and is God really appreciative?

“They” go by the handle ABRAXAS CORPORATION, and you can bet that I’m on their radar now simply for typing this and visiting their website.

“Abraxas has one focus – Risk Mitigation technology for the National Security community”

What about the rest of us?  What is our risk in empowering unaccountable privatized surveillance corporations connected to the “National Security community”–  who are not accountable to the public — or to oversight by anybody?

Abraxas, the god, has some creepy origination mumbo jumbo that might freak out some.  But Abraxas, the corporation, is what we should be concerned with here.  Ex-CIA and military surveillance experts have used that wonderful entrepreneurial spirit to track and surveil you, all at government expense.  They track, analyze, collate data about faces and license plate numbers at the “HVT” high value targets, according to them, which could essentially be… anywhere.  “High value” is in the eye of the beholder, after all, and  any landmark, building or park will suffice.

RT (Russia Today) has the story.  And the program is called “TrapWire.”

“The beauty of it is that we can protect an infinite number of facilities just as efficiently as we can one and we push information out to local law authorities automatically.”
-Richard “Hollis” Helms, founder of Abraxas Corp.



A malicious new hacking group called “AntiLeaks” is right now attacking WikiLieaks in an attempt to shut down this story.  Wonder who they trace back to?

For the insiders and “law enforcement” (sic?) out there on the net, you can actually visit the “TrapWire” website.  Here is the current version of that home page:

“TrapWire is a unique, predictive software system designed to detect patterns indicative of terrorist attacks or criminal operations. Utilizing a proprietary, rules-based engine, TrapWire detects, analyzes and alerts on suspicious events as they are collected over periods of time and across multiple locations. Through the systematic capture of these pre-attack indicators, terrorist or criminal surveillance and pre-attack planning operations can be identified — and appropriate law enforcement counter measures employed ahead of the attack. As such, our clients are provided with the ability to prevent the terrorist or criminal event, rather than simply mitigate damage or loss of life.

The TrapWire system includes a variety of features and components that are configured and delivered based on the specific needs of the customer organization and its end users. There are currently three different TrapWire systems available for public and private sector clients:
TW-CI (TrapWire Critical Infrastructure) focuses on the identification of pre-operational surveillance activities occurring around specific sites within the TrapWire Network
TW-CM (TrapWire Community Member) supports the online reporting of suspicious behavior by community members, such as the iWatch programs in Los Angeles and Washington DC, and See Something Say Something in Las Vegas and New York
TW-LE (TrapWire Law Enforcement) provides the ability to gather, analyze and disseminate information about surveillance and logistical activities occurring across an entire geographic region, including information gathered via TW CI and TW CM deployments”














  1. Gustavo Lapido Loureiro says:

    Although Wikileaks really seems to be KO, I could find one of its mirrors that is still alive (
    There, I spent around one hour looking for evidences of that dystopian scenario, but all I could find – and there are plenty of references to Abraxas and Trapwire – leads me to think that Trapwire main capacity is crossreferencing data that is already being input by the Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting (SAR) Initiative, known as NSI.
    And, as far as I could understand, data is mainly fed by humans – by anyone who suspects of something going wrong.
    In my opinion, I don’t see much difference in being surveilled by a street camera or by my neighbour. Actually, maybe surveillance operated by the common citizen is more effective than one conducted by street-cameras, and maybe that’s what one of Abraxa’s officers wanted to say when he told that Trapwire is better than image scanning.
    Maybe what should be really questioned is the need for a widespread initiative like NSI, “See Something Say Something” and others, that seems to aim – at their ideal point, at least – gathering ALL citizens in a huge informant network.
    In this sense, the offer of a dystopian scenario like that can be thought as a strategy of diverting people’s attention: in the end, people accepts the idea that surveillance is good, provided that street cameras won’t be used for that purpose, and paranoia rests untouched..

  2. Editor says:

    “Abraxa’s officers?”

    What do you mean by “officers?”

    These are corporate for-profit spy networks. Using a term like “officer” legitimizes what is essentially illegitimate. Law enforcement and intelligence are barely kept within the law when the public has some level of oversight. Now that their functions can be private, for mercenary ends and completely beyond the scrutiny of public officials… you don’t see a problem?

  3. Gustavo Lapido Loureiro says:

    Sure I do, and I completely agree with you.
    So, be Trapwire a 100% governmental effort and everything hereby written would be ok?
    I wonder how can US national security issues – is that what it is about, isn’t it? – be subject to public scrutinity without undermining national security itself.
    Like I said, I completely agree with you, but the main issue – the need to raise a state of exception – still remains, in my opinion.
    Don’t you think initiatives like the Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting and See Something Say Something require, by definition, public oversight to be suspended?

  4. Editor says:

    ADDITIONAL: Is There Any Escape From TrapWire? by JOHN STANTON

    “So, be Trapwire a 100% governmental effort and everything hereby written would be ok?”

    Of course not. The point is that this government/corporate partnering of “security” is outright fascism, by definition. It is rife with abuse, which apparently is by design. All this data spying on everyone can be sold for profit, to any buyer: foreign intelligence agencies, criminal cartels, the Bank of Burkina Faso… anyone.

    “Don’t you think initiatives like the Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting and See Something Say Something require, by definition, public oversight to be suspended?”

    All actions by the government are subject to public oversight. It’s called the separation of powers. This nation was founded on accountability and “checks and balances.” The constitution and the rights of the public must be safeguarded against ALL ENEMIES, BOTH FOREIGN AND DOMESTIC.

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