world

New reports allege vast U.S. Internet spying sweep targeting foreigners

48 Comments

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© 2013 AFP

©2022 GPlusMedia Inc.

48 Comments
Login to comment

Rand Paul is at it again:

The National Security Agency’s seizure and surveillance of virtually all of Verizon’s phone customers is an astounding assault on the Constitution. After revelations that the Internal Revenue Service targeted political dissidents and the Department of Justice seized reporters’ phone records, it would appear that this Administration has now sunk to a new low.

He either does not understand how the program works, or he is lying (or, likely, both). Funny how he's getting zero-backing from his supposed freedom-loving GOP brethren.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss. After the GSA debacle, the IRS scandal should this come as any surprise?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Big Brother is even bigger and more pervasive than imaginable, and is backed by both Dems and NeoCon Repubs.

This is the Mother of all Dragnets.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Didn't a terror attack just occur in Boston where the US government was criticized for not making the most of domestic and foreign intelligence? People forget rather quickly, don't they?

6 ( +8 / -3 )

Always amuses me how America bangs on about "freedom" yet does nothing but curtail this alleged "freedom"....

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

The U.S.A. is rapidly becoming the USSR of yesterday.

It's even got a prison camp!

0 ( +8 / -8 )

Is this not permitted by the PATRIOT Act?

I remember many America Bush fans saying anyone who didn't support PATRIOT Act is helping a terror.

Why suddenly Obama is enemy of freedom, tyrant, etc for using a law Bush made with big stars-and-stripe support?

Seems Republican want new rules suddenly.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

I honestly don't think this is that big of a deal. It's too much information to go after anyone who isn't suspected to be a terrorist. I said that under Bush and I'll say that under Obama.

Republicans won't make a fuss over it since it started under Bush. They know where people think they stand.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

Lol Google indirectly warned about this 2 years ago when they urged all users to read the new Terms Of Service, wherein it was stated that Google sends data to 3rd party AGENCIES for 'processing'. Or did people really NOT expect this, after Bush tachi proposed and then backed away from their 'Total Information Awareness' plan?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Sometimes I yearn for the simpler lifestyle of the 1950s.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

And the Americans think they are free, its becoming if not already a police state, Basically the internet frightens governments and politicians. Gives the people the freedom, they, the governments can't control

0 ( +4 / -4 )

I honestly don't think this is that big of a deal. It's too much information to go after anyone who isn't suspected to be a terrorist.

I'd rather agree, Superlib. It is all metadata - simply records of which numbers connected which numbers from where and when. There is no recording of communication content. Also, even this information requires a warrant to access.

I suppose the purpose is, if an individual does become suspect, the authorities would have historical data to quickly connect dots. In our radically complex modern world, that does not sound too objectionable.

0 ( +4 / -5 )

The USA has to spy on terrorists INSIDE the USA!! Only logical to assume Al Qaeda etc..has sleeper cells in and around the USA!! Where is the problem?? If you have a problem, take it to Guantánamo Camp X Ray!!

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

No real freedom if the terrorists are free to do what ever the heck they want!! Real freedom is not the same as anarchy!! So let's keep spying on these Bad guys and stop these terrorists before they attack again!!

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Dear Spooks: I hope you've been enjoying all the off-color jokes I've been mailing to my correspondents in the USA. Plenty more where they came from. Consider it one of the perks of your occupation. Warm wishes, Virtuoso a.k.a. WildWillieD@AOL.COM.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

One should always assume that everything that they do on the Internet or phone is being recorded by somebody. The Americans have been recording every phone call and all Internet activity in Japan for years at their base in Aomori. Nobody is actually sitting there with headphones on listening but if the computer picks up certain words and phrases, you are "re-flagged" and a person can go back and listen or in extreme cases listen live.

There was a small piece that appeared briefly in the news after the Boston bombing that "investigators" were going to go back and listen to all of the calls the guy's wife made in the previous few years to determine her involvement. It also noted that none of that information would be admissible in court.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Heh, Liberal heads are exploding all across America this morning because they ranted and stamped their feet for years against Mr. Bush when he ended up dioing half as much as Obama and now they are forced to defend Obama for doing twice as bad as Mr. Bush.

Too funny.

RR

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

any people wonder Why I do not trust government? Between Eschelon, Prism, DNA Swabs, Targeting of conservative activists, scare tactics used in our schools in the use vis a vis firearms, this is is a government gone completely insane.

This will not end well

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This is exactly what I expect them to do - they are the NSA, after all. I've nothing to hide.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'd rather agree, Superlib. It is all metadata - simply records of which numbers connected which numbers from where and when. There is no recording of communication content. Also, even this information requires a warrant to access.

They record everything and store it digitally. It is a huge database that is searchable. They do not use warrants unless they use the data in court then issue the warrant after the fact.

Example AT&T: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Room_641A (and that is the old stuff)

Most TV cable boxes and the xBox have the spy tech built in.

http://www.idigitaltimes.com/articles/18131/20130606/xbox-one-online-requirement-used-games-details.htm

0 ( +1 / -1 )

" they are the NSA, after all. I've nothing to hide."

It's not about whether you have anything to hide. It's about: "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

Bill of Rights

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

They record everything and store it digitally. It is a huge database that is searchable. They do not use warrants unless they use the data in court then issue the warrant after the fact.

All I can say about this, is that it is truly horrifying. The idea that the government is monitoring you, is not a small, insignificant reduction in liberty, it is a giant step down the road leading to a police state. They may as well just use whiteout on the bill of rights.

No real freedom if the terrorists are free to do what ever the heck they want!! Real freedom is not the same as anarchy!! So let's keep spying on these Bad guys and stop these terrorists before they attack again!!

They're not spying on the Bad Guys, they are spying on everyone.

Why suddenly Obama is enemy of freedom, tyrant, etc for using a law Bush made with big stars-and-stripe support?

Heh, notice how, somehow this is once again Bushs fault? Come on guys, wake up. This is not about partisanship. Just like the IRS, and AP scandals, they would be wrong under Bush, and they are just as wrong under Obama. Even if you like the D next to his name, this does not change facts. Ah well, I content myself, with the realization, that under Nixon, even when all the evidence was out, and he was being forced to resign, more then 30% of the country still supported him. Just goes to show, there are kool-aid drinkers in every group.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The U.S.A. is rapidly becoming the USSR of yesterday.

At least In "the USSR of yesterday" people hated informants. You could trust your friends and share various information. In modern USA people are taught to be informants on their workplaces and in neighbourhoods..

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

They record everything and store it digitally.

Wooohooo!! Hahaha. Where do you come up with that total crock and present it like it's a fact?

Can you tell me what company makes these super-recorders and storage devices? C'mon it shouldn't be a secret. (Coz they don't exist.)

Full disclosure: Some of the projects I've worked on over the past few years have involved instrumenting internet providers to meet CALEA requirements for lawful intercept of telephone conversations. These recorders have practical capacities which are far, FAR less than the ability to "record everything" and store it digitally.

By the way, when the by the time the information leaves the IP phone or computer, it's already in digital format. Maybe they store it in Dubly.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

You see this with Doctors and other medical professionals, but also with people that come into your home (cable/phone repair etc). If you take to much cash out of your bank account the bank must file a report (I want to say it is $2000).

http://www.naturalnews.com/038707_executive_orders_doctors_health_care_spies.html

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They do not use warrants unless they use the data in court then issue the warrant after the fact.

This is a flat-out falsehood. You think the many thousands of people who work for the hundreds of companies that provide phone and internet service wouldn't be aware of this, if it were true?

The reality is that the CALEA devices only actively record those accounts for which the internet provider has received a court order. Period.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) filed a class-action lawsuit against AT&T on January 31, 2006, accusing the telecommunication company of violating the law and the privacy of its customers by collaborating with the National Security Agency (NSA) in a massive, illegal program to wiretap and data-mine Americans' communications. On July 20, 2006, a federal judge denied the government's and AT&T's motions to dismiss the case, chiefly on the ground of the States Secrets Privilege, allowing the lawsuit to go forward. On August 15, 2007, the case was heard by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. An additional case by the EFF was created on September 18, 2008, titled Jewel v. NSA.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Room_641A (big data providers have whole floors devoted to NSA)

Fact -> and furthermore with cellphones you are being tracked. Almost every large city UK and US has audio pick-ups in the lightposts.

America and Britain are still using ECHELON. => I want to say this is true, but it could easily be another program at this time I would say you are "correct"

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I am a foreigner, living in the US now, and I say if you want to snoop, bring it on. I have nothing to hide and quite honestly if this helps to prevent me or my loved ones being blown to pieces by some nutjob then the US government has my 100% support.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The U.S.A. is rapidly becoming the USSR of yesterday.

It's even got a prison camp!

Liberalism at its worst!

1 ( +3 / -2 )

warewarenihonjinJun. 07, 2013 - 12:30PM JST Is this not permitted by the PATRIOT Act?

Umm.. I hate to break this to you, but U.S. law is not the same as international law. The U.S. public is welcome to vote away its freedoms and privacy, but passing a law in the U.S. does NOT entitle them to spy on people outside of the U.S.

Ironically enough this is precisely the sort of thing that cause the U.S. to rebel against the U.K., that the U.K. tried to enforce taxes in the U.S. when the U.S. wasn't consulted. Now the U.S. is trying to make its laws apply internationally without consulting anyone.

Here's the deal. You give me a vote in U.S. elections and I'll accept the results and abide by U.S. laws. Until you give me a vote though, respect the laws of other countries. ... of course the U.S. will never do this, because they know that foreigners would never fall for the patriotic bullshit the U.S. rolls out every election. We haven't been indoctrinated enough to fall for it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

big data providers have whole floors devoted to NSA

So what? That doesn't mean they are "recording" and "storing" everything. (They'd need much more room if they were.)

What they are more likely doing is scanning/sampling the data in real-time and picking out only those streams that flag some alert. While I have some deep concerns with that, I'm not going to go out and tell people that the government has recorded all of your communications because it's simply not true.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

What they are more likely doing is scanning/sampling the data in real-time and picking out only those streams that flag some alert. While I have some deep concerns with that, I'm not going to go out and tell people that the government has recorded all of your communications because it's simply not true.

In order to do the "data" scan they need to record the data first.

DHS "threat-fusion centers" = 72 of them We are not Big-Brother" "We do not have access to every camera in town" ==> Who would even of think of saying that.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cgAZRz0KWZc

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

In order to do the "data" scan they need to record the data first.

It's not actually recorded as most people would think of it. Like most applications, data will get written to memory so that it can be processed, but as soon as that's done, the data is erased/overlaid with new data. The amount of disk space required to record everything -- and for how long? -- would be physically possible.

The problem is such a system needs a lot of highly intelligent people to run it who would be perfectly OK with it.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I read the article in today's Washington Post. The reason the Republicans aren't up in arms about this PRISM program is because they're the ones who implemented it back when "Dubya" was in office. Congress has been keeping it going ever since.

The justification for this was that most international internet communications pass through the U.S. on their way to their ultimate destination. Without having to leave our country's borders, security agencies could therefore monitor MOST of the internet-based communications happening in the world. It's actually a smart idea. Hard to believe our government thought of it. (Maybe they stole the idea from another country.)

Always amuses me how America bangs on about "freedom" yet does nothing but curtail this alleged "freedom"....

Which freedom is being curtailed? Your freedom of speech is still there, it's just that your speech is being listened to by more people than you thought. And THAT'S only if you're a foreign national who happened to send a communication across America's data highway. The U.S. Constitution guarantees freedom of speech only to U.S. citizens. It says nothing about what citizens of other countries are guaranteed.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

More than likely targeting American people !!!!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

"

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

Sorry but if you engage in the kind of behavior the Boston bombers and others of that ilk have, you lose that right.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

And THAT'S only if you're a foreign national who happened to send a communication across America's data highway.

There actually was an NSA whistleblower a few years ago coming out to expose the extent to which surveillance had expanded under Obama who claimed that within the trillions of these electronic transactions included copies of almost all of the emails sent and received from most people living in the United States. I have no idea whether this is even logistically or technically feasible but there is no way any of this is limited to a targeted counterterrorism program.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@yabits

You, like most liberals have me on the floor rolling, if Bush had done the exact same thing, you would not be accepting this at all, but since it's Obama, it's perfectly OK. lol

1 ( +1 / -0 )

You, like most liberals have me on the floor rolling, if Bush had done the exact same thing, you would not be accepting this at all, but since it's Obama, it's perfectly OK. lol

I too must express my amazement at the hypocrisy demonstrated, and marvel, that changing a single letter, can totally alter a persons reactions. Simply changing from R to D, or vice versa, makes all the difference to some people.

Speaking for myself, I was concerned about the Patriot Act when it was passed, though, I figured it was necessary. As time has gone on though, I have been less and less convinced. Now, I am very much opposed to it, and not because the President happens to have a D next to his name, but because of the Orwellian nature of the beast that was created.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

You, like most liberals have me on the floor rolling, if Bush had done the exact same thing, you would not be accepting this at all, but since it's Obama, it's perfectly OK. lol

I challenge you to post one quote from this thread where I said that what Obama and Bush have been doing is OK.

You must have skipped over the part where I expressed that I had "deep concerns" about this (that is: the government's surveillance activities). Those concerns have been consistent throughout. You just prove again that you are not able to read with understanding.

The thrust of my comments here on this thread have been technical in nature: that the Internet Service Providers simply don't have the capacity or the capability in place to record and store all internet communications for any practical length of time.

Speaking for myself, I was concerned about the Patriot Act when it was passed, though, I figured it was necessary.

Translation: You did not oppose it. You supported the people who put it in place.

Speaking for myself, I predicted a decade ago that the very same conservatives who built the machinery around the Patriot Act would certainly cry and moan as soon as a leader from the Executive Branch from the opposite party made use of it. I opposed it then and I oppose it now. That is called "foresight."

Now, I am very much opposed to it, and not because the President happens to have a D next to his name, but because of the Orwellian nature of the beast that was created.

Yes, that's 20/20 hindsight for you.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

With all this data mining and even warning from Russia, seems the system works so well as to stop the Boston bombing.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If you think this is about the need to protect the citizens of U.S., think again. It is opening the door to let authorities monitor your internet traffic, with little oversight by the judicial body. It is an erosion of rights, plain and simple. No warrant, no access. It's as simple as that. If the government and law enforcement feel the need to bypass the judicial process then the motives of the government and law enforcement need to be questioned.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If the government and law enforcement feel the need to bypass the judicial process then the motives of the government and law enforcement need to be questioned.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/06/nsa-phone-records-verizon-court-order

They already have a secret "fake court" operating outside of law to bypass the judicial process.

The secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (Fisa) granted the order to the FBI on April 25, giving the government unlimited authority to obtain the data for a specified three-month period ending on July 19.

These are the "secret' Fisa court documents: (for Verizon -a USA cellular phone service)

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/interactive/2013/jun/06/verizon-telephone-data-court-order

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I am a foreigner, living in the US now, and I say if you want to snoop, bring it on. I have nothing to hide and quite honestly if this helps to prevent me or my loved ones being blown to pieces by some nutjob then the US government has my 100% support.

Oh god! That is the exact same logic that was used to pass the patriot act.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I said that I didn't necessarily think this particular practice is that bad, but I do believe that if they keep inching out further and further it will eventually become a problem. I just don't have the answer for that. I don't want them to stop what they're doing because I believe it's effective and not a threat....at this point.

On the other hand, those outraged need to keep things in perspective and stop the "Orwellian" comments. It's not that, and if you keep screaming it over and over people are going to stop listening to you. Then when a real problem does arise you're comments will actually work against everyone. It's kind of like what Republicans do.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I am a foreigner, living in the US now, and I say if you want to snoop, bring it on. I have nothing to hide and quite honestly if this helps to prevent me or my loved ones being blown to pieces by some nutjob then the US government has my 100% support.

Would you say the same to NYPD's stop and frisk program?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Sorry but if you engage in the kind of behavior the Boston bombers and others of that ilk have, you lose that right.

So you are saying that everyone loses that right? What the NSA is doing is directed at no particular person but in a sense to everyone. If it's programs find a pattern that matches a profile they have of a terrorist then you are further targeted for investigation? What if is mistaken and you are being investigated for no actual wrong doing?

By the way, the NSA didn't catch the Boston bombers.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites