Techno-Rebellion: Tactics From Hong Kong

In what began five months ago as a backlash to an extradition bill, pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong have faced violence and even torture at the hands of police. To observers, their struggle is a dystopian sci-fi film come to life.

Class II Lasers

As protesters gathered in public spaces, police stationed facial recognition cameras to identify and catalog individuals in crowds. Protesters covered their faces with masks and umbrellas, but some went a step further, aiming lasers directly at the cameras to disrupt their sensors.

It worked so well, police immediately began stopping citizens for purchasing these "offensive weapons". In a show of unbelievable hypocrisy, officers continued to launch tear gas canisters at protesters while complaining to the press that laser beams had damaged their eyes.


In a further blow to facial recognition, protesters armed with power tools cut down "facial recognition towers" (street lights equipped with surveillance cameras) and appeared to pour salt water over the exposed electronics.

DDOS VS Airdrop

This week, China appeared to launch a distributed denial of service attack against the website LIHKG, a forum where protesters have been sharing information. In response, those with iPhones are using Airdrop to anonymously pass information from person to person, bypassing any need for a centralized server.

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Police continue to launch tear gas at protesters, who continue to find new ways to neutralize the canisters. One video shows a protester placing a lit canister inside a water bottle, shaking it vigorously, and emptying its shattered contents onto the ground. The tear gas compounds were neutralized.


The "protest sharing economy" is a well-choreographed dance in Hong Kong, as protesters purchase and swap clothing and subway tickets using cash. This tactic has disrupted surveillance so well, police are now firing colored dye into protest crowds to later identify and arrest individuals.

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Nefarious Laboratories is not a news outlet; we have no obligation to remain impartial to any cause. We fully support the efforts of protesters in Hong Kong to peacefully fight for their rights, for their safety, and for their lives.

Published September 05, 2019 by Ethan F Grant