Black Code

Synopsis: Where big data meets big brother -- The story of how governments manipulate the internet to censor and monitor their citizens, and how those citizens are fighting back. This battle for control of cyberspace will challenge our ideas of privacy, citizenship and democracy to the very core.
Rotten Tomatoes:
90 min


[clock ticking]


[man] We are going through

the most profound change

in communication technologies in

all of human history right now.


Printing press, radio, telegraph,

television. All very important.

But I believe we're going

through the most transformative,

purely on the basis

of three technologies.

Mobile, social media

and cloud computing.

They share one

very important characteristic.

And that's the amount

of private information.

Information that used to be in

our desktops or filing cabinets,

even in our heads,

that we now

entrust to third parties.


Data that we are conscious of,

and deliberate about,

like the e-mails we send

and the tweets we post.

But it also includes

a lot of information

that we're completely,

or mostly, unconscious about.

So if you take my mobile phone,

even when I'm not using it,

it's emitting a pulse,

trying to locate the nearest Wi-Fi

router or cell phone exchange,

and within that beacon is

the make and model of the phone,

the fact that it's my phone,

because my name is attached

to the operating system,

and most importantly,

the geolocation of the phone.

[drone humming]

[man speaking Portuguese]

[Deibert continues] We are

leaving this digital exhaust

that contains extraordinarily precise

information about our lives,

our social relationships reduced

to trillions of data points

that form now this new ethereal

layer around the planet

that's only growing

in all directions.


Capabilities are being put

in the hands of policy makers,

five years ago, they'd never

imagine that they would have.

This is where big data

meets Big Brother.



- [folk music]

- [chuckles]

[man with accent]

Should be here.

[American man] It is kind

of in a rock, I think.

[American man #2]

Yeah, the entrance is in a rock.

- [speaking over each other]

- Or a bunker.

Oh, yeah, the bunker.

It is down there!

[driver] There is a

bunker under here.

- [man] Yeah.

- It is between 33 and 39.

[Deibert] Right there.

Look at that door.

- [driver] Yeah.

- [Deibert] Yeah, this is it.

- Bahnhof.

- [driver] Okay.


- [door squeaks]

- Hey, I guess we just go in.

[electronica music]

[servers whirring]

[electronica continues]

[loud whirring]

Many people believe that you have this

cloud services that are floating around.

People think, "Okay,

it's a cloud server."

But this is the actual physical

location of the Internet.

[whirring, clicking]

[Karlung continues] It's a

constant struggle to protect data.

[voices echo]

The Swedish Security Police

wanted to install tools

to automatically log in to our

data and get out the information.

So I invited them

to our facility,

and then I had a microphone

which I was provided by the Swedish

Public Service, national radio.

[speaking Swedish]

I taped this conversation,

and they were so angry.

And they also wanted us

to sign a paper

where they said that we could

not say anything about it.

It should be total secrecy.

They said, "If a terrorist attack

happens, it's your fault."

[click, buzz]

[man speaks Swedish]


It's, like, a creepy feeling.

Nobody can say that

any facility is safe.

There are always possibilities to go

in and find data and take it out.

People say that, "Oh, I don't

have anything to hide.

They can read my mail.

I don't have anything."

But it's not that

which is this problem.

The problem is, without secrecy,

there can be no democracy.

Without secrecy,

there can be no market economy.


There is an obvious candidate

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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