Edward Snowden,National Security Agency surveillance 2015-2016

Discussion in 'News and Current Events' started by The Wrong Guy, Feb 21, 2015.

  1. The Wrong Guy Member

    Profiled: From Radio to Porn, British Spies Track Web Users’ Online Identities

    By Ryan Gallagher, The Intercept

    There was a simple aim at the heart of the top-secret program: Record the website browsing habits of “every visible user on the Internet.”

    Before long, billions of digital records about ordinary people’s online activities were being stored every day. Among them were details cataloging visits to porn, social media and news websites, search engines, chat forums, and blogs.

    The mass surveillance operation — code-named KARMA POLICE — was launched by British spies about seven years ago without any public debate or scrutiny. It was just one part of a giant global Internet spying apparatus built by the United Kingdom’s electronic eavesdropping agency, Government Communications Headquarters, or GCHQ.

    The revelations about the scope of the British agency’s surveillance are contained in documents obtained by The Intercept from National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden. Previous reports based on the leaked files have exposed how GCHQ taps into Internet cables to monitor communications on a vast scale, but many details about what happens to the data after it has been vacuumed up have remained unclear.

    Amid a renewed push from the U.K. government for more surveillance powers, more than two dozen documents being disclosed today by The Intercept reveal for the first time several major strands of GCHQ’s existing electronic eavesdropping capabilities.

    One system builds profiles showing people’s web browsing histories. Another analyzes instant messenger communications, emails, Skype calls, text messages, cell phone locations, and social media interactions. Separate programs were built to keep tabs on “suspicious” Google searches and usage of Google Maps.

    The surveillance is underpinned by an opaque legal regime that has authorized GCHQ to sift through huge archives of metadata about the private phone calls, emails and Internet browsing logs of Brits, Americans, and any other citizens — all without a court order or judicial warrant.

    Metadata reveals information about a communication — such as the sender and recipient of an email, or the phone numbers someone called and at what time — but not the written content of the message or the audio of the call.

    As of 2012, GCHQ was storing about 50 billion metadata records about online communications and Web browsing activity every day, with plans in place to boost capacity to 100 billion daily by the end of that year. The agency, under cover of secrecy, was working to create what it said would soon be the biggest government surveillance system anywhere in the world.

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  2. The Wrong Guy Member

    “Snowden Treaty” Calls for End to Mass Surveillance, Protections for Whistleblowers

    By Murtaza Hussain, The Intercept

    Inspired by the disclosures of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, a campaign for a new global treaty against government mass surveillance was launched today in New York City.

    Entitled the “The International Treaty on the Right to Privacy, Protection Against Improper Surveillance and Protection of Whistleblowers,” or, colloquially, the “Snowden Treaty,” an executive summary of the forthcoming treaty calls on signatories “to enact concrete changes to outlaw mass surveillance,” increase efforts to provide “oversight of state surveillance,” and “develop international protections for whistleblowers.”

    At the event launching the treaty, Snowden spoke via a video link to say that the treaty was “the beginning of work that will continue for many years,” aimed at building popular pressure to convince governments to recognize privacy as a fundamental human right, and to provide internationally-guaranteed protections to whistleblowers who come forward to expose government corruption. Snowden also cited the threat of pervasive surveillance in the United States, stating that “the same tactics that the NSA and the CIA collaborated on in places like Yemen are migrating home to be used in the United States against common criminals and people who pose no threat to national security.”

    The treaty is the brainchild of David Miranda, who was detained by British authorities at Heathrow airport in 2013, an experience that he described as galvanizing him towards greater political activism on this issue. Miranda is the partner of Glenn Greenwald, a founding editor of The Intercept who received NSA documents from Snowden. Authorities at Heathrow seized files and storage devices that Miranda was transporting for Greenwald. (The Press Freedom Litigation Fund of First Look Media, the publisher of the Intercept, is supporting Miranda’s lawsuit challenging his detention.)

    Along with the activist organization Avaaz, Miranda began working on the treaty project last year. “We sat down with legal, privacy and technology experts from around the world and are working to create a document that will demand the right to privacy for people around the world,” Miranda said. Citing ongoing efforts by private corporations to protect themselves from spying and espionage, Miranda added that “we see changes happening, corporations are taking steps to protect themselves, and we need to take steps to protect ourselves too.”

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  3. The Wrong Guy Member

    The Big Secret That Makes the FBI’s Anti-Encryption Campaign a Big Lie

    By Jenna McLaughlin, The Intercept

    To hear FBI Director James Comey tell it, strong encryption stops law enforcement dead in its tracks by letting terrorists, kidnappers and rapists communicate in complete secrecy. But that’s just not true.

    In the rare cases in which an investigation may initially appear to be blocked by encryption – and so far, the FBI has yet to identify a single one— the government has a Plan B: it’s called hacking.

    Hacking – just like kicking down a door and looking through someone’s stuff – is a perfectly legal tactic for law enforcement, provided they have a warrant.

    And law enforcement officials have, over the years, learned many ways to install viruses, Trojan horses, and other forms of malicious code onto suspects’ devices. Doing so gives them the same access the suspects have to communications — before they’ve been encrypted, or after they’ve been unencrypted.

    Government officials don’t like talking about it – quite possibly because hacking takes considerably more effort than simply asking a telecom provider for records. Robert Litt, general counsel to the Director of National Intelligence, recently referred to potential government hacking as a process of “slow uncertain one-offs.”

    But they don’t deny it, either. Hacking is “an avenue to consider and discuss,” Amy Hess, the assistant executive director of the FBI’s Science and Technology branch, said at an encryption debate earlier this month.

    The FBI “routinely identifies, evaluates, and tests potential exploits in the interest of cyber security,” bureau spokesman Christopher Allen wrote in an email.


    As Wired first reported in 2007, the FBI has its own brand of malware called the Computer and IP Address Verifier (CIPAV), which can capture information about a machine including browser activity, IP address, operating system details, and other activity. The FBI, for instance, used CIPAV to discover the identity of the teen in Washington making bomb threats.

    The Electronic Frontier Foundation obtained documents from the FBI in 2011 revealing more about CIPAV, or the “web bug” as some agents describe it in internal e-mails. According to the documents, the FBI and other agencies have widely used the tool since 2001 in cities including Denver, El Paso, Honolulu, Philadelphia, Houston, Cincinnati, and Miami.

    In fact, EFF noted at the time: “If the FBI already has endpoint surveillance-based tools for internet wiretapping, it casts serious doubt on law enforcement’s claims of ‘going dark.”

    The FBI also uses non-proprietary hacker tools.

    Wired reported in 2014 that the FBI has turned to a popular hacker app called Metasploit, which publishes security flaws. In 2012, the FBI’s “Operation Torpedo” used the app to monitor users of the Tor network. Metasploit is a sort of one-stop shop for putting together hacking code, complete with fresh exploits and payloads. Metasploit revealed that the Flash plug-in connected to the Internet directly instead of opening the secretive Tor browser, and developed code that revealed a user’s real IP address. The FBI used a watering hole attack through child porn websites to install the code on users’ computers.

    Federal and local agencies have also consulted with outside contractors including the controversial Italian firm Hacking Team to develop and deploy malicious code. The FBI asked Hacking Team in 2012 to help it monitor Tor users. Tor then updated its “Remote Control System” malware to do that.

    And as the Washington Post recently reported, an Obama administration working group exploring possible approaches tech companies might use to let law enforcement unlock encrypted communications came up with one that involves the targeted installation of malware – through automatic updates.

    “Virtually all consumer devices include the capability to remotely download and install updates to their operating system and applications,” the task force wrote. Law enforcement would use “lawful process” to force tech companies to “use their remote update capability to insert law enforcement software into a targeted device.” That malware would then “enable far-reaching access to and control of the targeted device.”


    Although it would seem self-evident that law enforcement shouldn’t hack into someone’s computer without a warrant, the FBI has internally debated whether that’s true, according to Jonathan Mayer, a PhD candidate in computer science at Stanford University and author of a recent academic paper titled Constitutional Malware.

    Mayer analyzed the few public examples of law enforcement hacking he was able to find, most of them from the FBI and DEA: five public court orders and four judicial opinions.

    The complete article is here:
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  4. The Wrong Guy Member

    Carly Fiorina: I Supplied HP Servers for NSA Snooping

    By Sam Gustin, Motherboard

    When former National Security Agency director Michael Hayden reached out to Carly Fiorina with an urgent request in the weeks after 9/11, the HP CEO responded swiftly.

    Hayden needed computer servers — a lot of them, and quickly — as part of his effort to build what would become the most wide-ranging domestic surveillance program in US history.

    “Carly, I need stuff and I need it now,” Hayden recalled telling Fiorina, according to a report published Monday by Yahoo News.

    Fiorina, who had been named HP CEO in 1999 and is now running for president as a Republican, promptly redirected truckloads of HP servers that had been destined for retail stores into the custody of federal officials who took them to NSA headquarters in Fort Meade, Md.

    The servers were needed for a massive new warrantless surveillance program codenamed “Stellar Wind” that had been approved by President George W. Bush.

    Fiorina acknowledged providing the HP servers to the NSA during an interview with Michael Isikoff in which she defended the Bush administration’s warrantless surveillance programs and framed her collaboration with the NSA in patriotic terms.

    “I felt it was my duty to help, and so we did,” Fiorina said. “They were ramping up a whole set of programs and needed a lot of data crunching capability to try and monitor a whole set of threats... What I knew at the time was our nation had been attacked.”

    The Stellar Wind program was a precursor to other secret NSA surveillance efforts that would eventually include initiatives designed to collect the call records of millions of Americans, and monitor internet and data traffic at critical telecommunications infrastructure points, including, perhaps most notoriously, at the now-legendary Room 641A inside an AT&T facility at 611 Folsom Street in San Francisco.

    Fiorina’s disclosure of her assistance to the NSA comes as she seeks to position herself among the GOP presidential hopefuls as an aggressive foreign policy hawk and strong advocate of robust counterterrorism programs.

    Fiorina’s compliance with Hayden’s request for HP servers is but one episode in a long-running and close relationship between the GOP presidential hopeful and US intelligence agencies. In 2006, Hayden, who by then had become CIA director, appointed Fiorina, who was forced to resign as HP CEO in 2005, as chair of the CIA External Advisory Board.

    In this capacity, “Fiorina walked the corridors of the CIA and other high offices of government, assembling recommendations for national-security policy and developing a close working relationship with some of the most powerful officials in the administration,” according to a recent National Review article by Jim Geraghty.

    On her campaign website, Fiorina touts her “top-secret security clearance,” which she says has “given her intricate institutional knowledge of the challenges facing America ahead — and how to solve them.”

    In the interview, Fiorina also vigorously defended the CIA’s controversial use of waterboarding during so-called “enhanced” interrogations, which she said helped “keep our nation safe” after 9/11.

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  5. The Wrong Guy Member

    Edward Snowden Is On Twitter: @Snowden

    Edward Snowden isn’t just a hashtag anymore. The NSA whistleblower joined Twitter on Tuesday, using the @Snowden Twitter handle.

    Snowden, who has lived in Russia since turning over a trove of top-secret documents to reporters more than two years ago, has remained in the public eye thanks to frequent appearances and interviews using video links and sometimes even robots.

    But joining the Twitterverse establishes him even more firmly as a major figure in the public discourse about surveillance and privacy that he jump-started in June 2013.


    According to Snowden’s lawyer, Ben Wizner of the ACLU, Snowden himself will be controlling the account.

    More here:

    Edward Snowden ‏@Snowden 3 hours ago
    Can you hear me now?

    Edward Snowden ‏@Snowden 3 hours ago
    .@neiltyson Thanks for the welcome. And now we've got water on Mars!
    Do you think they check passports at the border? Asking for a friend.

    Edward Snowden ‏@Snowden 1 hour ago
    Meanwhile, a thousand people at Fort Meade just opened Twitter.
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  6. The Wrong Guy Member

    Apple throws down the gauntlet with overhauled privacy policy | Macworld


    Governments around the world ask Apple for information on a regular basis, usually because someone has reported a stolen device and needs help tracking it down. But 6 percent of government requests are looking for personal user information. Apple can only divulge information about your iCloud account. If a device is protected by a passcode (which it should be, on devices running iOS 8 and iOS 9), Apple can’t comply with search warrants because files on those devices are protected by an encryption key tied to your passcode. That means Apple complied with just 27 percent of the 6 percent of account information requests in the U.S. from July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2015. Apple didn’t say how many total requests it received, but said less than 0.00673 percent of its customers were affected by requests.

    “Apple has never worked with any government agency from any country to create a ‘backdoor’ in any of our products or services,” its government information request policy states. “We have also never allowed any government access to our servers. And we never will.”

    More here:
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  7. The Wrong Guy Member

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  8. The Wrong Guy Member

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  9. DeathHamster Member

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  10. The Wrong Guy Member

    Sam Richards ‏@MinneapoliSam 26 minutes ago
    Today marks the 14th anniversary of mass surveillance - read our latest:

    Declassified Review Sheds Light on Start of Electronic Surveillance in United States

    A recently declassified report from June 29, 2009 details the rise, short comings and more of the United States mass electronic surveillance programs created by the Bush administration in the wake of the September 11 attacks.

    The report states that the Presidential Surveillance Program was signed into existence on October 4, 2001. The over 700 page report contains information on the PSP which led to the NSA’s collection of telephony and metadata which became part of a national dialogue after the Edward Snowden leaks.

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  11. The Wrong Guy Member

    The Intercept ‏@the_intercept 8 seconds ago
    Activists flew a drone over the NSA building in Germany, dropping pamphlets encouraging workers to quit in protest.

    Drone Flies Over NSA Complex in Germany, Dropping Leaflets

    A group of activists flew a drone over a key National Security Agency complex in Germany on Friday, dropping leaflets encouraging the intelligence workers inside to quit in protest over invasive surveillance.

    The site of the drone fly-by, the Dagger Complex, is a U.S. military installation south of Frankfurt. It houses the European Cryptologic Center — a major source of signals and communications intelligence in Europe for the NSA. According to German media, its 1100 employees monitor massive amounts of communications with tools such as Xkeyscore, one of the programs revealed by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.

    The group behind the drone mission, Intelexit, made headlines last week when it drove moving billboards past intelligence agencies in the U.S. and abroad. The billboards, framed by picturesque scenes of sunsets and American flags, include catchphrases such as “Complicit in mass surveillance and drone wars?” and “Listen to your heart, not to private phone calls,” directing observers to “exit intelligence.”

    The latest campaign added a layer of symbolism with its use of a drone.

    “We are inviting our many supporters to think of innovative ways to reach those who are in distress because of their role in supporting mass surveillance and drone warfare,” Sascha Fugel, a spokesperson for the campaign in a press release, said in a press release.

    “Germany remains inactive and has to date taken no responsibility for the activities at the Dagger Complex,” Fugel continued. “We know that there are employees of the Dagger Complex who are experiencing great moral conflict because of their tacit involvement in spying.”


    Intelexit is supported by whistleblowers including Thomas Drake, a former senior NSA official who was indicted under the Espionage Act for sharing information about programs he viewed as expensive, illegal, and major risks to citizens’ privacy. Drake is featured in Intelexit’s homepage video.

    According to a press release, Intelexit will be rolling out its networked support program for spies in its next phase.

    Drone drops leaflets over NSA facility in Germany #Intelexit

    Published by Marie Bauer on October 5, 2015

    The airborne leaflet operation at the Dagger Complex in Germany was successful!

    The Dagger Complex in Darmstadt, Germany acts as a central point of the NSA's surveillance and espionage activity in Europe. On Friday Intelexit supporters, the initiative helping people break free from the secret services, dropped information flyers to the 1100 employees working there.

    This is a wonderful way to reach out to the spying community – we are currently working on more ways of participation to reach out and help people who want to break free.

    More information at
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  12. The Wrong Guy Member

    Edward Snowden ‏@Snowden 7 hours ago
    Europe's high court just struck down a major law routinely abused for surveillance. We are all safer as a result.

    Top European Court Rules That NSA Spying Makes U.S. Unsafe For Data

    The European Union no longer considers the United States a “safe harbor” for data because the National Security Agency surveillance exposed by whistleblower Edward Snowden “enables interference, by United States public authorities, with the fundamental rights of persons.”

    The EU’s highest court, the Court of Justice, declared on Tuesday that an international commercial data-sharing agreement allowing U.S. companies free-flowing access to large amounts of European citizens’ data was no longer valid.

    As Snowden revealed in 2013, the NSA has been interpreting section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act as giving it license to intercept Internet and telephone communications in and out of the U.S. on a massive scale. That is known as “Upstream” collection. The NSA is not required to demonstrate probable cause of a crime before a court or judge before examining the data. Another 702 program, called PRISM, explicitly collects communications of “targeted individuals” from providers such as Facebook, Yahoo and Skype.

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  13. The Wrong Guy Member

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  14. The Wrong Guy Member

    Barton Gellman ‏@bartongellman 24 hours ago
    DOD asked Purdue to unpublish a video of my keynote at the #DawnOrDoom conference. Purdue wiped it. My thoughts:

    Scholarship, Security and ‘Spillage’ on Campus

    On September 24 I gave a keynote presentation at Purdue University about the NSA, Edward Snowden, and national security journalism in the age of surveillance. It was part of the excellent Dawn or Doom colloquium, which I greatly enjoyed. The organizers live-streamed my talk and promised to provide me with a permalink to share.

    After unexplained delays, I received a terse email from the university last week. Upon advice of counsel, it said, Purdue “will not be able to publish your particular video” and will not be sending me a copy. The conference hosts, once warm and hospitable, stopped replying to my emails and telephone calls. I don’t hold it against them. Very likely they are under lockdown by spokesmen and lawyers.

    Naturally, all this piqued my curiosity. With the help of my colleague Sam Adler-Bell, I think I have pieced together most of the story.

    It turns out that Purdue has wiped all copies of my video and slides from university servers, on grounds that I displayed classified documents briefly on screen. A breach report was filed with the university’s Research Information Assurance Officer, also known as the Site Security Officer, under the terms of Defense Department Operating Manual 5220.22-M. I am told that Purdue briefly considered, among other things, whether to destroy the projector I borrowed, lest contaminants remain.

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    Barton Gellman ‏@bartongellman 23 hours ago
    Update: Purdue says it overreacted. If it can retrieve my video, it will publish -- redacted.

    I showed leaked NSA slides at Purdue, so feds demanded the video be destroyed

    Classified material in the public domain: what’s a university to do?
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  15. The Wrong Guy Member

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  16. The Wrong Guy Member

    Government Likens Ending Bulk Surveillance to Opening Prison Gates

    A Justice Department prosecutor said Thursday that ordering the immediate end of bulk surveillance of millions of Americans’ phone records would be as hasty as suddenly letting criminals out of prison.

    “Public safety should be taken into consideration,” argued DOJ attorney Julia Berman, noting that in a 2011 Supreme Court ruling on prison overcrowding, the state of California was given two years to find a solution and relocate prisoners.

    By comparison, she suggested, the six months Congress granted to the National Security Agency to stop indiscriminately collecting data on American phone calls was minimal.

    Ending the bulk collection program even a few weeks before the current November 29 deadline would be an imminent risk to national security because it would create a dangerous “intelligence gap” during a period rife with fears of homegrown terrorism, she said.

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  17. The Wrong Guy Member

    Dan Froomkin ‏@froomkin 14 hours ago
    [During the Democratic debate on CNN, Hillary] Clinton says @Snowden "stole very important information that has unfortunately fallen into the wrong hands.” WTF is she talking about?

    unR̶A̶D̶A̶C̶K̶ted ‏@JesselynRadack 3 hours ago
    "Wrong hands" = #journalists and the #public
    @HillaryClinton @Snowden

    unR̶A̶D̶A̶C̶K̶ted ‏@JesselynRadack 3 hours ago
    Clinton: "@Snowden coulda been a #whistleblower." Fact: @Snowden IS a #whistleblower.


    unR̶A̶D̶A̶C̶K̶ted ‏@JesselynRadack 3 hours ago
    Note to #Clinton: #Whistleblower protections do not apply to #IntelligenceCommunity #contractors like @Snowden
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  18. Anonymous Member

    Hillary USA-ELECTION-CLINTON 2.jpg

    The more unhappy she looks, the more happy I am!
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  19. The Wrong Guy Member

    The Assassination Complex

    From his first days as commander in chief, the drone has been President Barack Obama’s weapon of choice, used by the military and the CIA to hunt down and kill the people his administration has deemed — through secretive processes, without indictment or trial — worthy of execution. There has been intense focus on the technology of remote killing, but that often serves as a surrogate for what should be a broader examination of the state’s power over life and death.
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  20. Anonymous Member

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  21. The Wrong Guy Member

    This is from September 1, 2015:
    This was published today:

    ACLU lawsuit against NSA mass surveillance dropped by federal court | The Guardian

    A federal district court has dismissed a lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union against the National Security Agency.

    Lawyers for the plaintiffs argued that the surveillance program was innately harmful, despite the NSA’s silence on it in court. “The NSA’s mass surveillance violates our clients’ constitutional rights to privacy, freedom of speech, and freedom of association, and it poses a grave threat to a free internet and a free society,” said Ashley Gorski, a staff attorney with the ACLU national security project. “The private communications of innocent people don’t belong in government hands.”

    The judge in the case, TS Ellis III, said the suit relied on “the subjective fear of surveillance”, because the NSA did not admit to having collected any of the information it was alleged to have collected by the ACLU.

    Ellis admitted that acquiring enough information to prove illegal spying was difficult whether or not illegal spying had occurred, but said that difficulty was a feature, not a bug. “Establishing standing to challenge section 702 in a civil case is plainly difficult,” he wrote. “But such difficulty comes with the territory.”

    “The court has wrongly insulated the NSA’s spying from meaningful judicial scrutiny,” said ACLU National Security Project staff attorney Patrick Toomey, who argued the case.

    Ellis is a former navy aviator who in 2006 dismissed a suit against the CIA brought by a German man who accused the agency of abducting and torturing him as part of the US “extraordinary rendition” program. Notably, Ellis dismissed the case not on merit, but on the grounds that a trial would risk national security. “Private interests must give way to the national interest in preserving state secrets,” he wrote at the time.

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  22. The Wrong Guy Member

    Nine Out of Ten of the Internet’s Top Websites Are Leaking Your Data | Motherboard

    The vast majority of websites you visit are sending your data to third-party sources, usually without your permission or knowledge. That’s not exactly breaking news, but the sheer scale and ubiquity of that leakage might be.

    Tim Libert, a privacy researcher with the University of Pennsylvania, has published new peer-reviewed research that sought to quantify all the “privacy compromising mechanisms” on the one million most popular websites worldwide. His conclusion? “Findings indicate that nearly 9 in 10 websites leak user data to parties of which the user is likely unaware.”

    Libert used his own open source software called webXray—the same program he’s used in the past to analyze trackers installed on health and porn websites—and he found that not only were most siphoning user data, they were sharing it all over the place.

    “Sites that leak user data contact an average of nine external domains,” he wrote in the new paper, published in the International Journal of Communication, “indicating that users may be tracked by multiple entities in tandem.”

    In other words, when you visit a website — say,,, or — that site will likely forward your user data to nine other, outside websites. These include Google (through its analytics software, which is installed on a colossal number of sites across the web — 46 percent, per Libert’s research), Facebook, and Wordpress.

    Furthermore, Libert found that “more than 6 in 10 websites spawn third-party cookies; and more than 8 in 10 websites load Javascript code from external parties onto users’ computers.”

    Tracking, Libert told me, is “utterly endemic.”

    “There is one web users sees in their browsers, but there is a much larger hidden web that is looking back at them,” he told me. “I always find it funny when old TV shows will have a gag where somebody on the screen can ‘see’ into your living room — it’s obviously silly with old technology, but that’s really how the web works! For every two eyes looking at a screen there are probably ten or more looking back at them.”

    So what does that mean for you, the average daily internet browser?

    “If you visit any of the top one million sites there is a 90 percent chance largely hidden parties will get information about your browsing,” Libert told me. “Most troubling is that if you use your browser setting to say ‘Do Not Track’ me, the explicitly stated policy of nearly all the companies is to flat-out ignore you,” he told me, referring to your chosen browser setting.

    Libert’s analysis finds that, unsurprisingly, one company is doing the lion’s share of the tracking.

    “The worst perpetrator is Google, which tracks people on nearly 80 percent of sites, and does not respect DNT signals," he said.

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  23. The Wrong Guy Member

    UK Police Will Be Able To Read Everyone’s Internet Search History Under New Plan | True Activist


    UK Police are asking the government for new surveillance powers to be able to view the internet search history of every single person in the country.

    Richard Berry, the National Police Chiefs’ Council spokesman told The Guardian that “We want to police by consent, and we want to ensure that privacy safeguards are in place. But we need to balance this with the needs of the vulnerable and the victims. We essentially need the ‘who, where, when and what’ of any communication – who initiated it, where were they and when did it happened. And a little bit of the ‘what’, were they on Facebook, or a banking site, or an illegal child-abuse image-sharing website?

    Five years ago, [a suspect] could have physically walked into a bank and carried out a transaction. We could have put a surveillance team on that but now, most of it is done online. We just want to know about the visit,” he added.

    It is likely that police are already looking at your online activity, but just want the power to do it legally. As we learned from whistleblower Edward Snowden, governments are very interested what their citizens are doing online, and they do have the technology to spy on every telephone call and internet communication.

    Police in the UK have been attempting to reach for these powers through legislation for years, but they have been blocked on multiple occasions. This new effort proves that they will not be giving up on getting legal permission for their spying programs.

    MP David Davis told The Guardian “It’s extraordinary they’re asking for this again, they are overreaching and there is no proven need to retain such data for a year.”

    Home Secretary Theresa May will announce the specifics of the plan during a meeting about the Government’s new surveillance bill in the House of Commons on Wednesday.

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  24. The Wrong Guy Member

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  25. The Wrong Guy Member

    Rights Groups Call on U.S. Agencies to Appoint Human Rights Contact | The Guardian

    More than two dozen civic groups groups are asking why government agencies haven’t found somebody to respond to possible human rights violations within the agencies’ areas of responsibility — as required by a 1998 executive order.

    The groups sent letters to six agencies on Wednesday — the Department of Defense, the Department of Justice, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Central Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency, and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence — echoing their past request for a point of contact who can respond to violations of international human rights treaties.

    The authors of the letter, including government accountability, civil rights, and consumer advocate organizations, pointed to the recent decision by the EU Court of Justice — invalidating a free-flowing data-sharing pact between the U.S. and Europe out of privacy concerns — as a reason for urgency in filling the role.

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  26. Honestly, Edward Snowden is absolutely right about many issues.....First of all, Every single agency in America should submit all data they collect to the United States Congress for review. We really need to Take back the Internet, Regardless of what Anyone thinks in that alphabet soup of Government Agencies. Have you Read about the Program that photocopies all mail in the Federal System? I just Read an Interesting Article in the Conspiracy section damn....Its pretty Damn Good. I think People all over the world including the moderators need to keep up to date with the Realities of Mass Surveillance its worse now then it was in 2013. Every Single Anon Member should write the President and the NSA and simply overwhelm them with amount of data that we already know...About them. I mean think about it OPM was hacked and every single NSA employee's Information is available to them. Including where they were born, SSN's, The Family they have, They're social contacts even the schools they went to and the psychological evaluation information they all were tested on. OH yeah and they're polygraph information (Which anyone can pass, in this day and age).
  27. furball Member

    ProtonMail still under attack?
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  28. @Anonymous Member

    Arundhati Roy, John Cusack, Daniel Ellsberg & The Exiled Whistle-Blower


    Every nation-state tends towards the imperial—that is the point. Through banks, armies, secret police, propaganda, courts and jails, treaties, taxes, laws and orders, myths of civil obedience, assumptions of civic virtue at the top. Still it should be said of the political left, we expect something better. And correctly. We put more trust in those who show a measure of compassion, who denounce the hideous social arrangements that make war inevitable and human desire omnipresent; which fosters corporate selfishness, panders to appetites and disorder, waste the earth.
    Daniel Berrigan
    poet, Jesuit priest

    Things That Can and Cannot Be Said .......
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  29. The Wrong Guy Member

    60 Minutes Pushes National Security Propaganda To Cast Snowden, Manning As Traitors

    The television program 60 Minutes aired a segment on Sunday in which it assassinated the character of Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden, and even went so far as to question their loyalty to America. The two whistleblowers were compared to the Washington Navy Yard shooter, who killed twelve people.

    It was part of an examination of what U.S. government officials perceive to be serious flaws in the process by which the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) reviews security clearances granted to government employees, but the framing made it seem like architects of “insider threat” programs from U.S. security agencies and politicians, who support total surveillance of government employees in the workplace and while they’re at home, had produced the segment.

    Using language that would scare everyone’s grandparents, the CBS show used “fugitive” to describe Snowden, “convicted spy” to describe Manning (even though she is not), and “mass murderer” to describe the Navy Yard shooter Aaron Alexis. Anchor Scott Pelley amplified the terror by adding they all had “one thing in common: U.S. government security clearances which they turned into weapons.”

    Continued here:
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  30. The Wrong Guy Member

    Baseless Calls to Expand Surveillance Fit Familiar, Cynical Pattern

    By Cindy Cohn, Electronic Frontier Foundation, November 19, 2015

    Like clockwork, cynical calls to expand mass surveillance practices — by continuing the domestic telephone records collection and restricting access to strong encryption — came immediately following the Paris attacks. These calls came before the smoke had even cleared, much less before a serious investigation completed. They came from high places too, including CIA head John Brennan and New York Police Commissioner Bill Bratton.

    Seasoned law enforcement officers and the heads of spy agencies should know better than jump to conclusions before the facts are in. Sadly, these premature demands for more surveillance in the wake of tragedies are not unprecedented.

    The most prominent example is the Bush Administration's aggressive push for expanded surveillance powers after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, before a proper investigation could be carried out. We all now know from the 9/11 Commission that the Bush Administration failed to uncover the attacks and stop them not because of insufficient legal authority and not because they didn't have sufficient information, but because of operational failures and internal rules.

    Yet despite this, the Bush Administration rushed to Congress to give it broad new collection authorities in the USA Patriot Act. We also now know that along with the public law, the government used secret legal interpretations to gather even more data about innocent people, interpretations that have since been revealed as both shocking and unsupported. In response to its failure to properly act on the data it had, the government pushed to collect even more data.

    Now we see a sadly similar exploitation of this latest international tragedy, again pushed by people who are supposed to be above petty politics.

    Continued here:
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  31. From the - Un Fucking Believable Department.

    HSBC whistleblower given five years’ jail over biggest leak in banking history

    Hervé Falciani sentenced in his absence for financial espionage by federal court for exposing wrongdoing at HSBC’s private Swiss bank

    The whistleblower who exposed wrongdoing at HSBC’s Swiss private bank has been sentenced to five years in prison by a Swiss court.

    Hervé Falciani, a former IT worker, was convicted in his absence for the biggest leak in banking history. He is currently living in France, where he sought refuge from Swiss justice, and did not attend the trial.
    The leak of secret bank account details formed the basis of revelations – by the Guardian, the BBC, Le Monde and other media outlets – which showed that HSBC’s Swiss banking arm turned a blind eye to illegal activities of arms dealers and helped wealthy people evade taxes.

    While working on the database of HSBC’s Swiss private bank, Falciani downloaded the details of about 130,000 holders of secret Swiss accounts. The information was handed to French investigators in December 2008 and then circulated to other European governments.

    It was used to prosecute tax evaders including Arlette Ricci, the heir to France’s Nina Ricci perfume empire, and to pursue Emilio Botín, the late chairman of Spain’s Santander bank.

    Switzerland’s federal prosecutor had requested a record six-year term for Falciani for aggravated industrial espionage, data theft and violation of commercial and banking secrecy.

    It was the longest sentence ever demanded by the confederation’s public ministry in a case of banking data theft. The trial was also the first conducted by the country’s federal criminal court in which the accused had not been present.

    The defendant’s lawyers had demanded a reduced sentence, of between two and three years, “compatible with the granting of a reprieve”.

    Falciani himself refused to appear in the dock, on the grounds that he would not be allowed a fair trial. He described the process as a “parody of justice”.

  32. ideafarm Member

    He violated the privacy of the account holders. The issue has parallels to the WBC controversy, which was about a particularly obnoxious exercise of the right to speak. In the instant case, we have criminals availing themselves of bank accounts that the bank has committed to keep private. Privacy is almost as important as the rights to speak and to associate, in empowering the people so that they can organize to throw off tyranny. To some extent, both of the latter are enhanced by privacy. He committed an invasion of the privacy of thousands of account holders, a few of which were criminals. What about the privacy rights of all those who were not criminals?

    He is being made an example of, to deter further invasions of peoples' privacy. That is a good thing.
  33. DeathHamster Member

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  34. The Wrong Guy Member

    Government Could Hack Children's Toys to Spy on You | The Hacker News

    As part of the Investigatory Powers Bill, children's connected toys could be the next item to be used by the government in an effort to spy on people, claims Antony Walker, deputy CEO of technology trade association techUK.

    While speaking to the UK parliament's Commons Science and Technology Committee, Walker warned MPs of how the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill could be abused to turn any Internet-connected device into a snooping tool.


    Lots more:"Investigatory Powers Bill"
  35. The Wrong Guy Member

    The Secret Surveillance Catalogue

    Concerned about the militarization of law enforcement, a source within the intelligence community has provided The Intercept with a secret, internal U.S. government catalogue of dozens of cellphone surveillance devices used by the military and by intelligence agencies. Some of the devices are already in use by federal law enforcement and local police forces domestically, and civil liberties advocates believe others will eventually find their way into use inside the U.S. This product catalogue provides rare insight into the current spy capabilities of local law enforcement and offers a preview of the future of mass surveillance of mobile communications.

    A Secret Catalogue of Government Gear for Spying on Your Cellphone
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  36. @Anonymous Member

    mSJHNbO6_bigger.png The Intercept Verified account @the_intercept
    Here's what #CISA being passed means for your privacy:



    wyDhBwr5_bigger.png Discordian@AnonDiscordian 2h2 hours ago
    The internet has billions of citizens, why should America be able to decide over a global network without the
    consent of its users?

    5A7vJJD3_bigger.png Anonymous@YourAnonNews 3h3 hours ago
    Keep organizing. The next time the &quot;democratic&quot; US government pulls shit like #CISA, we need to be in a position fight back 100x harder.
  37. The Wrong Guy Member

    Will California Actually Force Legislators to Wear Sponsor Patches Like NASCAR Drivers? | VICE

    "I wish I could claim that this was original to me, but it's not," businessman John Cox told VICE in an interview. Cox is behind a proposed 2016 California ballot initiative pushing to make the sticker plan a reality. "Some people told me that it was either Bill Maher or Robin Williams who suggested it in a standup routine. So it's been out there as an idea, and we're adopting it."
    • Like Like x 2
  38. Disambiguation Global Moderator

    • Like Like x 1
  39. The Wrong Guy Member

    • Like Like x 1

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