Executive branch[ edit ] Shortly after publication of the reports by The Guardian and The Washington Post, the United States Director of National IntelligenceJames Clapperon June 7, released a statement confirming that for nearly six years the government of the United States had been using large Internet services companies such as Facebook to collect information on foreigners outside the United States as a defense against national security threats. They contain numerous inaccuracies.
He added that the vast majority of records collected have nothing to do with investigating terrorism, and asked, How can every call that every American makes or receives be relevant to a specific investigation? Greenwald also makes an interesting observation about partisanship and describes how in the Democrats were very clearly opposed to this kind of secret surveillance that Republicans had spear-headed in the aftermatch of the terrorist attacks.
And he contrasts that with how defensive Democrats have been this time round. He also points to this interesting YouTube video that summarizes this though read the article, too! Cory Doctorow, writing in The Guardianresponded as to why you should care: Those people are your friends, your neighbors, maybe your kids: You should care about surveillance because once the system for surveillance is built into the networks and the phones, bad guys or dirty cops can use it to attack you.
Privacy, it appears, is totally essential for the powerful and completely worthless for the rest of us. Citizens who had done nothing wrong, declared Uncle Hague, had nothing to fear from comprehensive surveillance.
As Stephen Fry observed in an exasperated tweet: I can think of thousands of people who have nothing to hide, but who would have good reasons to worry about intrusive surveillance. Journalists seeking to protect their sources, for example; NHS whistleblowers; people seeking online help for personal psychological torments; frightened teenagers seeking advice on contraception or abortion; estranged wives of abusive husbands; asylum seekers and dissident refugees; and so on.
This included setting up fake Internet cafes, installing spyware such as keyloggers, and intercepting emails. It has often been thought that all governments would like to or do perform some form of spying and espionage during international meetings, and it is sometimes in the national interest to do so or at least can be argued that way.
In addition, as the journal Foreign Policy revealed, the US spied on its own citizens as far back as the Vietnam war, including spying on two of its own sitting senior senators and prominent figures such as Martin Luther King, boxer Muhammad Ali, and others.
But it has been rarely possible to prove such suspicions, until now. Finally, the if you have nothing to hide argument misses a fundamental point; having such vasts amount of data, potentially unnecessarily when collected via a dragnet style system, is awaiting abuse.
The NSA and others currently claim they are not abusing their roles but we have already heard them lie to Congress, so they are already facing public trust issues which is hard for a secretive organization anywaybut with all this data, it is the potential to abuse it internally, or through hacks, etc that is the privacy concern here.
Secrecy especially in a democracy by-passes checks and balances. In the case of the US, who strongly claim there is legal and judicial oversight in these things, it is still done in secrecy; it is not clear how much personal data of ordinary citizens of the US and rest of the world is caught in this.
It was claimed that the NSA had some kind of backdoor or direct access to the vasts amount of data these companies have on their users, which the Internet titans vigorously denied. In some ways, these denials appear to be spin as companies have to comply with legal surveillance requests and the information may not technically be shared via backdoors.
On the other hand, companies are not legally allowed to acknowledge certain types of intelligence requests so legally there can be vasts amounts of data sharing but the secrecy surrounding it means it is not clear how much privacy invasion is legitimate or not. But at the very least it emerged there were possibly thousands of requests for virtually all data for various users they would target.
And that the NSA were able to capture a vast amount of Internet data. Edward Snowden told the Hong Kong-based South China Post that there had been more than 61, hacking operations globallywith hundreds of targets in Hong Kong and on the [Chinese] mainland.
We hack network backbones—like huge Internet routers, basically—that give us access to the communications of hundreds of thousands of computers without having to hack every single one, Snowden added. And some companies are only too willing to sell to the US government to support these activities.
For example, Inter Press Service Back to top Internet Governance It is interesting to note that a few months earlier the US was resisting what seemed like international efforts to put the stewardship of the Internet in the hands of the United Nations rather than being a decentralized system though with the US having final say over the changes to certain aspects of the core, or root, Internet servers.
At the time, much of the technology community and others argued that the US is a good defender of the Internet and helped create it in the first placeand that putting it into the hands of the UN was really the agenda of nations like Russia, China and others with questionable records on human rights.
Examples such as surveillance and censorship were given as reasons to not trust other governments.
And forums and blogs were filled with the usual over-simplistic UN-bashing that the US is often known for. The US, by comparison, probably rightly argued that the current decentralized system works well. Internet giants such as Google also weighed in along similar linesas did various Internet freedom activist organizations and individuals.
Unfortunately, even with the current system, governments unfortunately can sensor large portions of the Internet if they want to.While it may only be temporary, the National Security Agency on Monday lost its authority to collect Americans’ phone records in bulk after the Senate failed to extend provisions of the Patriot.
Verizon. The US National Security Agency (NSA) has been empowered by a secret order issued by the foreign intelligence court directing Verizon Communications, a mobile phone provider with Klayman warned that “every aspect of Americans’ lives is being accessed and monitored by the government.” “It’s not just telephone metadata that’s being monitored,” he alleged.
The New York Times Bestseller. In May , Glenn Greenwald set out for Hong Kong to meet an anonymous source who claimed to have astonishing evidence of pervasive government spying and insisted on communicating only through heavily encrypted channels.
President Obama’s announced solution to the NSA spying controversy is the same unconstitutional program with a new configuration. I intend to continue the fight to restore Americans' rights through my Fourth Amendment Restoration Act and my legal challenge against the NSA.
Tech giants hit by NSA spying slam encryption backdoors. The tech coalition includes Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and Verizon and Yahoo's parent company Oath — all of which were hit by.