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DieChecker

Another NSA Scandel?

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http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2013/10/14/nsa-email-instant-messaging-contact-lists/2984055/

The National Security Agency has been collecting contacts from people's personal email address books and instant messaging accounts in an effort to detect relationships that might be crucial to government security, the Washington Post is reporting.

The majority of the contacts harvested come from Yahoo and Hotmail accounts, but others also come from Facebook, Google and unspecified other providers, the Post reports. The contacts amount to a sizeable portion of the world's email and instant messaging accounts, according to the news organization.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/nsa-collects-millions-of-e-mail-address-books-globally/2013/10/14/8e58b5be-34f9-11e3-80c6-7e6dd8d22d8f_story.html

The National Security Agency is harvesting hundreds of millions of contact lists from personal e-mail and instant messaging accounts around the world, many of them belonging to Americans, according to senior intelligence officials and top-secret documents provided by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

The collection program, which has not been disclosed before, intercepts e-mail address books and “buddy lists” from instant messaging services as they move across global data links. Online services often transmit those contacts when a user logs on, composes a message, or synchronizes a computer or mobile device with information stored on remote servers.

During a single day last year, the NSA’s Special Source Operations branch collected 444,743 e-mail address books from Yahoo, 105,068 from Hotmail, 82,857 from Facebook, 33,697 from Gmail and 22,881 from unspecified other providers, according to an internal NSA PowerPoint presentation. Those figures, described as a typical daily intake in the document, correspond to a rate of more than 250 million a year.

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Who can be held accountable for this intrusion? All they needed was an excuse to do these things and GW Bush pretty much stripped our laws

to allow water boarding (but that's not torture) and this type of governmental intrusion that just says the hell with the constitution, and it was renamed

the "Patriot act." Under the guise that if you didn't support it, you weren't a "patriot"

And people swore it wasn't going to be misused and it was, by prosecutors and upward in our government.

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Yeah. I had read the news report earlier tonight.

For myself, I don't care. I have only one important contact that is already constantly monitored due to his position. The rest of my contacts are just "normal", so again, I don't care.

But that's just me... other's might feel "violated" and I understand that.

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Just don't conspire with others to commit acts of terrorism or criminal acts or other stuff like that and the agencies that watch us will put you on their "harmless idiots" list and leave you alone.

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"if you're not doing anything wrong you'll have nothing to worry about".

Have you ever wondered what the Powers might consider to be "conspiring to commit acts of Terrorism"? How wide their definition might be? Even typing the words "conspiring to commit acts of Terrorism" might be enough to activate their program. People have been flagged as "suspicious" and put on "No Fly Lists" by the Authoririties for something as simple as publicly questioning the legality of the Iraq war. I'm afraid the U.S. Government really is heading the realms of totalitarianism in the way it gathers information and uses the flimsiest of "evidence" to identify people as potential Wrongdoers.

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I call that paranoia. Look, the nature of the internet is that there is no such thing as privacy on it, and trying to make legal protections will merely drive such activities underground, but they will still happen.

Personally I feel that in the modern world any government that fails to use every possible resource to identify terrorists and their like is not doing its job.

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I'm sure the "If you're not doing anything wrong you have nothing to worry about" attitude of dismissing government surveillance as harmless was common in the early days of Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union.

As for the Patriot Act:

Opponents of the law have criticized its authorization of indefinite detentions of immigrants; the permission given law enforcement officers to search a home or business without the owner’s or the occupant’s consent or knowledge; the expanded use of National Security Letters, which allows the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to search telephone, e-mail, and financial records without a court order; and the expanded access of law enforcement agencies to business records, including library and financial records.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patriot_Act

The 4th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution states:

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.

Of course if you use a cell phone with GPS, the government can know where your are at any given time. Do we really want the government to keep track of everything we citizens say and do? I consider NSA surveillance and the Patriot Act an indication of the health of our free society.

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Can't you see how technology has rendered the Fourth Amendment obsolete? Sure you can see to it that law enforcement agencies follow the procedure, but there is no way to keep criminal elements or even less-than-perfect businesses from doing as much. So why hamstring government?

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I think that's the difference with this business; monitoring everyone to check for signs of potential subversion is the exact opposite to the way that law Enforcement has usually worked in countries that like to call themselves "Free". And does it really make things easier for the law Enforcement authorities? Surely they'd be so completely swamped with data that they'd have to rely on automated systems to sift through it all, so people would be flagged unfairly just because what they happen to say ticks sufficient boxes in a template. And how much of the law Enforcement people's time must it waste, if they have to devote time to following up leads which the auto system has flagged up? It must make it much less efficient and waste a lot more time, rather than making it more efficient and effective.

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The Fourth Amendment is obsolete? I guess it should read: "The people shall have no right to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, unreasonable searches and seizures shall be permitted, and no warrants shall be issued nor probable cause required describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

This is how the Fourth Amendment actually reads today, or is interpreted by the government. I agree, the Fourth Amendment is obsolete.

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This business of somehow setting off a flag and getting in trouble because of it is a red herring. At most this would cause a real human to take a look at what you said, and that person would readily see that you were quite innocent.

The real threat is that a government determined to suppress any divergence of opinion can use this tool to stifle discussion and debate, and thereby perpetuate itself. I think the protection against this comes at a different phase of the process -- when such efforts actually manifest themselves.

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And people were mad about Watergate. Can't wait to see how presidents abuse this power...

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"if you're not doing anything wrong you'll have nothing to worry about".

Have you ever wondered what the Powers might consider to be "conspiring to commit acts of Terrorism"? How wide their definition might be? Even typing the words "conspiring to commit acts of Terrorism" might be enough to activate their program. People have been flagged as "suspicious" and put on "No Fly Lists" by the Authoririties for something as simple as publicly questioning the legality of the Iraq war. I'm afraid the U.S. Government really is heading the realms of totalitarianism in the way it gathers information and uses the flimsiest of "evidence" to identify people as potential Wrongdoers.

You know they monitor all the world's posting forums also? You're on their lists now my friend.... :yes::w00t:

I tend to agree with those that say that since they do nothing wrong, they have nothing to fear, but I also agree that the Jews thought they have nothing (major) to fear in Europe prior to WWII also.

Edited by DieChecker

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You know they monitor all the world's posting forums also? You're on their lists now my friend.... :yes::w00t:

Oh, I know, that's why "if you're not doing anything wrong you'll have nothing to worry about" isn't really as nice and comfortable as it might seem, since you might easily be flagged up simply because of what other people may have said on any site you may happen to visit. And that also, of course, is why this whole notion of eavesdropping on associates of anyone they might already be interested in is such a waste of time.

In fact, it could easily backfire; if all the Spook's time was taken up with timewasting like this, they could easily miss something that might really be of importance.

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Just don't conspire with others to commit acts of terrorism or criminal acts or other stuff like that and the agencies that watch us will put you on their "harmless idiots" list and leave you alone.

Does "other stuff like that" include taking positions contrary to the government and grass-roots activism?

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I call that paranoia. Look, the nature of the internet is that there is no such thing as privacy on it, and trying to make legal protections will merely drive such activities underground, but they will still happen.

Personally I feel that in the modern world any government that fails to use every possible resource to identify terrorists and their like is not doing its job.

Says someone from "free vientnam", lmao

Misery loves company, I’m sure you would love to see USA as "free" as Vietnam. I doubt many Americans share your desire thou.

Edited by aztek

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