Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 31st Jul 2013 14:12 UTC
Internet & Networking From The Guardian:

A top secret National Security Agency program allows analysts to search with no prior authorization through vast databases containing emails, online chats and the browsing histories of millions of individuals, according to documents provided by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

The NSA boasts in training materials that the program, called XKeyscore, is its "widest reaching" system for developing intelligence from the internet.

This is not PRISM - but a different system. The slides are damning, as always.

It validates claims made by Edward Snowden, and makes it clear that US government officials have been lying all along. There's no court order required for any of this - in a supposedly modern democracy. Crazy.

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it's modern fascism
by ezraz on Wed 31st Jul 2013 19:44 UTC
ezraz
Member since:
2012-06-20

Reporting here from the usa. i've been online for over 25 years so I know "they" have plenty of info on me.

But i have to say, the thing that makes this threat to our lazy democracy unbelievable (or perhaps inert) is the amount of day to day crime that goes on in america - emailing about stolen goods, texting drug deals, scalping tickets, sex, guns, gambling, unlicensed everything, general tax evasion and business scams - so much badness!

If uncle sam really is listening to and reading everything we do, he doesn't seem to care much about our illegal activities. the number of crimes hinted at or outright admitted through texting, email, message boards, even facebook would lead me to think we'd hear about more people busted this way. i've never heard of anyone having seemingly private data thrown at them without their knowledge of even being investigated. conjecture i know.

I am not happy about this and will do whatever i can as a US citizen to get this shut down, but at the same time you have adjust for scale and general human incompetence. perhaps they are just looking for terrorist activities and ignoring other crime?

I know this can always change, just sayin. when i first heard about prism or whatever it was called in the 90's (from a buddy who ran a few regional ISP's) we would put a threatening string of text in our email sigs to try to expose the system. for a couple of years i put something like "it's not like I want to kill the president " in my email sig, and I have yet to be questioned by the men in black.

Reply Score: 1

RE: it's modern fascism
by ilovebeer on Wed 31st Jul 2013 20:07 in reply to "it's modern fascism"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

I know this can always change, just sayin. when i first heard about prism or whatever it was called in the 90's (from a buddy who ran a few regional ISP's) we would put a threatening string of text in our email sigs to try to expose the system. for a couple of years i put something like "it's not like I want to kill the president " in my email sig, and I have yet to be questioned by the men in black.

Why would anyone question you over that? Also, there's no gain in chasing down common criminals. To be clear, by "gain" I mean financial or political gain.

Clearly the biggest concern people have is privacy. They simply don't like the idea of absolutely everything they do being recorded/documented. Nobody likes their secrets revealed even if their secrets are lame or cause no harm. Nobody likes feeling like they're being spied on, which IS what's happening by definition. Nobody likes being lied to. Nobody likes the idea that the biggest enemy to freedom, rights, and the constitution, is the government itself. What's actually done with all this information, documentation, records, logs, etc. is secondary and can only make an already horrible situation worse. And the most scary thing about all this is that neither you, I, nor any other citizen can do anything to stop it.

Reply Parent Score: 8

RE[2]: it's modern fascism
by ezraz on Wed 31st Jul 2013 20:16 in reply to "RE: it's modern fascism"
ezraz Member since:
2012-06-20

yeah i agree with you. i'm not on facebook and because of this very reason and it is a bit of a pain in the azz to not play along with the digital revolution. but i know facebook, beyond profit, cannot be trusted with my personal info.

i'm not as concerned that they are 'watching' us, because since the moment we invented electronic communication there has been a way to view and soon after record it for nefarious uses. it's the searchable scalable database of our lives that we don't know exists that is worrisome.

i'm more concerned about it being a top-secret, who knows what's going on sort of thing. snowden did good i think. because this is a long-overdue discussion all societies need to have about privacy, since the machines are to the point of tracking us nearly everywhere doing nearly everything.

i'd like to see some of you hackers get to work showing us citizens exactly what they have on us. i'm a database programmer so i know what they can do with that data, but i don't know what they have, or from what sources, in the first place.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: it's modern fascism
by pandronic on Thu 1st Aug 2013 04:59 in reply to "it's modern fascism"
pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

If uncle sam really is listening to and reading everything we do, he doesn't seem to care much about our illegal activities. the number of crimes hinted at or outright admitted through texting, email, message boards, even facebook would lead me to think we'd hear about more people busted this way. i've never heard of anyone having seemingly private data thrown at them without their knowledge of even being investigated. conjecture i know.


They'd probably act only if the person would try to do something like start a revolution, or if he becomes an important politician or wealthy business man. It's nice to be able to blackmail everybody ... "remember that time when you bragged to your friends on facebook tha you smoked weed 20 years ago? now please contribute to our campaign, or vote a certain way, or stay quiet, etc".


The sociopaths in power are not interested in our well beeing or in real crime prevention. They only want to control everything so they can hold on to their power and add another meaningless zero to their bank accounts.

Edited 2013-08-01 05:02 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE: it's modern fascism
by bnolsen on Thu 1st Aug 2013 05:13 in reply to "it's modern fascism"
bnolsen Member since:
2006-01-06

uhhhh ever hear of the IRS scandals going on? the NSA very very likely has been redirected as a tool of political repression and and intimidation. The "terrorist" threat is just an excuse and a cover.

fascist is right more than you know. My grandfather got shipped off to the russian front with zero training by a very similar regime.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: it's modern fascism
by Kochise on Thu 1st Aug 2013 08:30 in reply to "RE: it's modern fascism"
Kochise Member since:
2006-03-03

Ahhh, the virtue of patriotism that makes US citizens accept even the most inane laws against themselves ("patriot" act, prism and so on) in the name of fight against the 7 diseases (terrorism, pedophiles, pornography, ...)

Like general US citizens' scrutiny would do a better job than "specifically targeted surgical strikes" of threats, that just proves NSA are amateurs in their own country.

Good democracy you have there. Russian and Chinese citizens don't envy you.

Kochise

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE: it's modern fascism
by andybalholm on Thu 1st Aug 2013 18:12 in reply to "it's modern fascism"
andybalholm Member since:
2012-08-29

i've never heard of anyone having seemingly private data thrown at them without their knowledge of even being investigated.


I have. An acquaintance of mine is a US citizen living in Nicaragua. A few years ago a woman and her daughter were running away from a child-custody decree made by a US court. He helped them in some way; I think it was finding plane tickets to fly from Canada to Nicaragua without going through the US.

Next time he came to the US, the FBI met him at the plane and arrested him. He had no idea that he was a wanted man. Their main evidence was emails and credit-card records. (Eventually they dropped the charges against him.)

I doubt these NSA programs were involved in this case; the FBI probably used old-fashioned warrants and subpoenas. But there is no doubt that the feds sometimes read people's emails without telling them.

Many of the emails involved were from one Nicaragua resident to another. But they apparently used a US email provider like Gmail, so the US government had access to the messages.

Reply Parent Score: 3