Friday, June 07, 2013

Land of the Free II

It seems that the USA's totalitarian surveillance state is much worse than we thought:

The National Security Agency has obtained direct access to the systems of Google, Facebook, Apple and other US internet giants, according to a top secret document obtained by the Guardian.

The NSA access is part of a previously undisclosed program called PRISM, which allows officials to collect material including search history, the content of emails, file transfers and live chats, the document says.

The Guardian has verified the authenticity of the document, a 41-slide PowerPoint presentation – classified as top secret with no distribution to foreign allies – which was apparently used to train intelligence operatives on the capabilities of the program. The document claims "collection directly from the servers" of major US service providers.

Which I guess tells us why the GCSB is so keen to get the power to spy domestically, monitor domestic networks and dictate their technology choices: because their US masters are already doing it.

Meanwhile, I suspect there's a sudden market opportunity for internet services and social networks based in a country which respects privacy and does not have such totalitarian surveillance. Sadly, National looks likely to piss that opportunity away by pandering to its rogue spies.