Thai police claim that the popular instant messaging app Line is secretly helping them to gain access to chat logs. Naver, its creator, has denied helping them and said it had not received any requests from the Thai police. Both statements are very right, and yet are very, very wrong.
It was Technology Crime Suppression Division commander Pol Maj Gen Pisit Pao-In's comments that got me thinking that there was more to this than meets the eye. This led to an investigation, published in detail in TelecomAsia, that uncovered how Line left its security wide-open so that almost any state or telecommunication company could access full chat history with minimal effort.
I found myself working with a communications network engineer who set out to see what kind of metadata he could learn about the Line protocol.