There is an opinion that a wave of recent high profile anti-corruption arrests has been a final phase of a wide scale high-tech surveillance program personally initiated by King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud to ensure consolidation of power by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salmanand and targeting his opposition. Dwindling oil revenues and inability to reset economy to alternative path increase risk of internal strife in Saudi Arabia already heavily burdened with tumultuous politics of Middle East. The risk factor pushes Saudi government to bolster already record high mass surveillance spending, says a recent analysis of the Saudi Arabia mass surveillance market.
“The kingdom is at a crossroads: Its economy has flatlined with low oil prices; the war in Yemen is a quagmire; the blockade of Qatar is a failure; Iranian influence is rampant in Lebanon, Syria and Iraq; and the succession is a question mark,” wrote ex-CIA official Bruce Riedel.
An even bolder assumption would be that it was the Israeli expertise that helped to gather evidence leading to arrests: “Lacking expertise, technology and qualified workforce to manage it all locally Saudis turn to European, US, Chinese, Russian and even Israeli companies. The Saudi mass surveillance market, unconstrained with Western democracy and privacy concerns, thrives and will continue to thrive as long as Saudi ruling system perceives threat to its existence.”, Source: Saudi Arabia Mass Surveillance Market Forecast.