Preoccupations + edward_snowden   197

Spies and internet giants are in the same business: surveillance. But we can stop them | John Naughton | Comment is free | The Guardian
" in the end, both the intelligence agencies and the tech companies are in the same business, namely surveillance. And both groups, oddly enough, provide the same kind of justification for what they do: that their surveillance is both necessary (for national security in the case of governments, for economic viability in the case of the companies) and conducted within the law. We need to test both justifications and the great thing about the European court of justice judgment is that it starts us off on that conversation."
John_Naughton  Guardian  2015  Edward_Snowden  NSA  GCHQ  surveillance  privacy  data_protection  ECJ  safe_harbour 
october 2015 by Preoccupations
UK under pressure to respond to latest Edward Snowden claims | US news | The Guardian
RT @TomJHarper: Balanced @guardian follow up to the Sunday Times splash on Russia and China allegedly accessing Edward Snowden docs
intelligence  espionage  UK  USA  Edward_Snowden  Russia  China  Guardian  2015 
june 2015 by Preoccupations
How Covert Agents Infiltrate the Internet to Manipulate, Deceive, and Destroy Reputations - The Intercept
"no government should be able to engage in these tactics: what justification is there for having government agencies target people – who have been charged with no crime – for reputation-destruction, infiltrate online political communities, and develop techniques for manipulating online discourse? But to allow those actions with no public knowledge or accountability is particularly unjustifiable."
Edward_Snowden  Glenn_Greenwald  2014  GCHQ 
february 2014 by Preoccupations
NSA collects millions of text messages daily in 'untargeted' global sweep | World news | theguardian.com
"The National Security Agency has collected almost 200 million text messages a day from across the globe, using them to extract data including location, contact networks and credit card details, according to top-secret documents. The untargeted collection and storage of SMS messages – including their contacts – is revealed in a joint investigation between the Guardian and the UK’s Channel 4 News based on material provided by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden."
NSA  USA  surveillance  SMS  2014  Edward_Snowden  Guardian  privacy 
january 2014 by Preoccupations
On Secrecy, Oaths, and Edward Snowden | Freedom of the Press Foundation
"They did not swear to support and defend or obey the President, or to keep secrets. But to support and defend, among other elements of the Constitution, the First, Fourth, Fifth and Sixth Amendments in the Bill of Rights, and Article I, section 8, on war powers. That's the oath that, as Snowden correctly said to Gellman, he upheld (as I would say I eventually did) and that Clapper and Alexander broke (along with most members of Congress)."
Edward_Snowden  Daniel_Ellsberg  2014  whistle-blowing  USA 
january 2014 by Preoccupations
Here's how data thieves have captured our lives on the internet | John Naughton
"the interests of the NSA and the big internet companies converge. For what they have both managed to do is to abolish the practice of anonymous reading which, in the good old analogue days, we regarded as an essential condition for an open, democratic society. In a networked world, the spooks and the companies know everything you read, and the companies even know how long you spent on a particular page. And if you don't think that's creepy then you haven't been paying attention."
John_Naughton  2013  Guardian  NSA  Edward_Snowden  technology  data  metadata  surveillance  privacy  from iphone
december 2013 by Preoccupations
Notes EM — My FT oped: "The Snowden saga heralds a radical shift in capitalism"
"Technical infrastructure and geopolitical power; rampant consumerism and ubiquitous surveillance; the lofty rhetoric of “internet freedom” and the sober reality of the ever-increasing internet control – all these are interconnected in ways most of us would rather not acknowledge or think about. Instead, we have focused on just one element in this long chain – state spying – but have mostly ignored all others. … it is not just the NSA that is broken: the way we do – and pay for – our communicating today is broken as well. And it is broken for political and economic reasons, not just legal and technological ones … These are not isolated instances of power abuse that can be corrected by updating laws, introducing tighter checks on spying, building more privacy tools, or making state demands to tech companies more transparent. … what good are these steps to counter the much more disturbing trend whereby our personal information – rather than money – becomes the chief way in which we pay for services – and soon, perhaps, everyday objects – that we use? … What eludes Mr Snowden – along with most of his detractors and supporters – is that we might be living through a transformation in how capitalism works, with personal data emerging as an alternative payment regime. The benefits to consumers are already obvious; the potential costs to citizens are not. As markets in personal information proliferate, so do the externalities – with democracy the main victim. … to remain relevant and have some political teeth, the surveillance debate must be linked to debates about capitalism – or risk obscurity in the highly legalistic ghetto of the privacy debate. … Should we not be more critical of the rationale, advanced by the NSA and other agencies, that they need this data to engage in pre-emptive problem-solving? We should not allow the falling costs of pre-emption to crowd out more systemic attempts to pinpoint the origins of the problems that we are trying to solve."
Evgeny_Morozov  2013  FT  NSA  Edward_Snowden  surveillance  consumerism  internet  capitalism  technology  infrastructure  transparency  Silicon_Valley  politics  democracy  surveillance_capitalism  from iphone
december 2013 by Preoccupations
Federal Judge Rules Against N.S.A. Phone Data Program - NYTimes.com
"In a statement distributed by the journalist Glenn Greenwald, who was a recipient of leaked documents from Mr. Snowden and who wrote the first article about the bulk data collection, Mr. Snowden hailed the ruling. “I acted on my belief that the N.S.A.'s mass surveillance programs would not withstand a constitutional challenge, and that the American public deserved a chance to see these issues determined by open courts,” Mr. Snowden said. “Today, a secret program authorized by a secret court was, when exposed to the light of day, found to violate Americans’ rights. It is the first of many.”"
NSA  USA  Edward_Snowden  NYT  2013  surveillance  privacy  Law 
december 2013 by Preoccupations
Alan Rusbridger evokes First Amendment to backward UK
"Rusbridger has been working with the New York Times on the Snowden affair, and has been defining international public interest in democracy and liberty as he goes. And when he appeared before the committee, he spoke not of Parliament Square in London but of the legacy of the Pentagon Papers case of 1971. He also spoke eloquently about the US First Amendment and blocking prior restraint injunctions on the grounds they would be unconstitutional. He may just have been transformed into one of the few British media editors who actually gets the First Amendment. Through bitter personal experience, Rusbridger appears to have realised that culturally, socially and politically, the UK is a backward and inferior member of the post-industrialised liberal democracies."
press  freedom  US  USA  Edward_Snowden  Alan_Rusbridger  Parliament  2013 
december 2013 by Preoccupations
An Attack on the Press, on Both Sides of the Pond | American Civil Liberties Union
"Once a reporter has received information in the public interest (subject to the narrowest of exceptions), that information must be allowed to be reported without limitation and at the discretion of the journalist. Only through this freedom can we hold our public servants to account for their actions, good or bad. In Britain, to their shame, these servants seem to have forgotten whom they serve."
Alan_Rusbridger  Edward_Snowden  NSA  GCHQ  UK  USA  2013  press_freedom  press  freedom  Milton 
december 2013 by Preoccupations
An open letter from Carl Bernstein to Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger | Media | theguardian.com
"Rather than hauling in journalists for questioning and trying to intimidate them, the Commons would do well to encourage and join that debate over how the vast electronic intelligence-gathering capabilities of the modern security-state can be employed in a manner that gives up little or nothing to real terrorists and real enemies and skilfully uses all our technological capabilities to protect us, while at the same time taking every possible measure to insure that these capabilities are not abused in a way that would abrogate the rights and privacy of law-abiding citizens. There have always been tensions between such objectives in our democracies, especially in regard to the role of the press. But as we learned in the United States during our experience with the Pentagon Papers and Watergate, it is essential that no prior governmental restraints or intimidation be imposed on a truly free press; otherwise, in such darkness, we encourage the risk of our democracies falling prey to despotism and demagoguery and even criminality by our elected leaders and government officials."
Alan_Rusbridger  Guardian  2013  Edward_Snowden  press  freedom  democracy  Parliament 
december 2013 by Preoccupations
Henry Farrell and Martha Finnemore | Hypocrisy and U.S. Foreign Policy | Foreign Affairs
"The deeper threat that leakers such as Manning and Snowden pose is more subtle than a direct assault on U.S. national security: they undermine Washington’s ability to act hypocritically and get away with it. … Washington faces what can be described as an accelerating hypocrisy collapse -- a dramatic narrowing of the country’s room to maneuver between its stated aspirations and its sometimes sordid pursuit of self-interest. The U.S. government, its friends, and its foes can no longer plausibly deny the dark side of U.S. foreign policy and will have to address it head-on. … Secrecy can be defended as a policy in a democracy. Blatant hypocrisy is a tougher sell. Voters accept that they cannot know everything that their government does, but they do not like being lied to. If the United States is to reduce its dangerous dependence on doublespeak, it will have to submit to real oversight and an open democratic debate about its policies. The era of easy hypocrisy is over."
USA  NSA  surveillance  Edward_Snowden  2013 
november 2013 by Preoccupations
A Fraying of the Public/Private Surveillance Partnership - Atlantic Mobile
"while Edward Snowden has given us a window into the NSA's activities, these sorts of tactics are probably also used by other intelligence services around the world. And today's secret NSA programs become tomorrow's PhD theses, and the next day's criminal hacker tools. It’s impossible to build an Internet where the good guys can eavesdrop, and the bad guys cannot. We have a choice between an Internet that is vulnerable to all attackers, or an Internet that is safe from all attackers. And a safe and secure Internet is in everyone's best interests, including the US's."
surveillance  internet  NSA  USA  Edward_Snowden  Bruce_Schneier  2013 
november 2013 by Preoccupations
Leaks have weakened American control of the web - FT.com
"Not even Mr Snowden could have imagined he would have such a serious impact on global communications policy. But the NSA’s hubris has resulted in an encounter with its nemesis, in the form of a 30-year-old American. Nobody can predict what the internet will look like in five years’ time – but the end result could be an increasingly fragmented network, where nation states build up their digital frontiers and governments increase their control over what their citizens can and cannot do online."
FT  2013  internet  Edward_Snowden  NSA  ICANN  ITU  from iphone
november 2013 by Preoccupations
Intelligence and transparency: nothing to see here
"An American or European visitor would have been most struck by what the committee did not ask: it barely touched on the substantive issues raised by the Snowden documents. It skated over any serious questioning about the complex issues to do with mass surveillance, civil liberties or privacy. There were no questions about GCHQ's reported involvement in agencies helping themselves to traffic between Google data servers. There was nothing on the bugging of world leaders who might be considered allies, not enemies. Nothing on the reliance on corporate partners – "well beyond" what they are legally required to do. And nothing on the issue raised by Sir Tim Berners-Lee – the "appalling and foolish" weakening of internet encryption with potentially terrible consequences for individuals and businesses. These matters have been widely discussed in this country, including in such subversive journals as the FT and the Economist. Indeed, they have been debated in every serious newspaper and legislature in the world. They will become manifest in reformed laws, treaties and alliances. But there was little suggestion today that much of this was of true concern."
Parliament  oversight  scrutiny  Guardian  2013  Edward_Snowden  NSA  GCHQ  surveillance  privacy  from iphone
november 2013 by Preoccupations
Tim Berners-Lee: encryption breaking by spy agencies 'appalling and foolish'
"In contrast to several senior British politicians – including prime minister David Cameron – who have called for the Guardian to be investigated over its reporting of the Snowden leaks, Berners-Lee sees both the news organisation and Snowden himself as having acted in the public interest."
Tim_Berners-Lee  Guardian  2013  NSA  GCHQ  USA  UK  surveillance  Edward_Snowden 
november 2013 by Preoccupations
Mike Hearn on NSA/GCHQ
"The packet capture shown in these new NSA slides shows internal database replication traffic for the anti-hacking system I worked on for over two years. Specifically, it shows a database recording a user login as part of this system:

http://googleblog.blogspot.ch/2013/02/an-update-on-our-war-against-account.html

Recently +Brandon Downey, a colleague of mine on the Google security team, said (after the usual disclaimers about being personal opinions and not speaking for the firm which I repeat here) - "fuck these guys":

https://plus.google.com/108799184931623330498/posts/SfYy8xbDWGG

I now join him in issuing a giant Fuck You to the people who made these slides. I am not American, I am a Brit, but it's no different - GCHQ turns out to be even worse than the NSA.

We designed this system to keep criminals out. There's no ambiguity here. The warrant system with skeptical judges, paths for appeal, and rules of evidence was built from centuries of hard won experience. When it works, it represents as good a balance as we've got between the need to restrain the state and the need to keep crime in check. Bypassing that system is illegal for a good reason.

Unfortunately we live in a world where all too often, laws are for the little people. Nobody at GCHQ or the NSA will ever stand before a judge and answer for this industrial-scale subversion of the judicial process. In the absence of working law enforcement, we therefore do what internet engineers have always done - build more secure software. The traffic shown in the slides below is now all encrypted and the work the NSA/GCHQ staff did on understanding it, ruined.

Thank you Edward Snowden. For me personally, this is the most interesting revelation all summer."
Google  surveillance  NSA  GCHQ  security  encryption  Edward_Snowden  2013 
november 2013 by Preoccupations
How we know the NSA had access to internal Google and Yahoo cloud data
"We do not know exactly how the NSA and GCHQ intercept the data, other than it happens on British territory. But we do know they are intercepting it from inside the Yahoo and Google private clouds, because some of what NSA and GCHQ collect is found nowhere else."
NSA  Google  Yahoo!  cloud-computing  surveillance  Washington_Post  2013  Edward_Snowden  USA  GCHQ  UK 
november 2013 by Preoccupations
Edward Snowden has done us all a favour – even Barack Obama - FT.com
"Mr Snowden has also forced us to confront the larger question of US power in a changing world. For all America’s military weight, hard power gets fewer bangs for its buck nowadays. The fate of a US-led world in the coming decades will probably not be decided by a military clash with another large power. It is more likely to be settled by the quality of America’s economy and democracy. For most people around the world who are older than 30, the US is still chiefly seen through those prisms. But, for a whole generation beneath them, it is coming to stand for Big Brother – and not necessarily a benign one. The damage to US soft power – and the weight it lends to those who want to nationalise data storage and balkanise the internet – should not be overlooked. … The question of Mr Snowden’s motives is secondary. He may be a criminal, or a saint. I suspect he had good reasons. At minimum he will pay for his sins with a lifetime of looking over his shoulder. In the meantime, the rest of us are far more educated than before about how much privacy we have lost and how rapidly. We are all Angela Merkel now."
FT  2013  Edward_Snowden  USA  Obama  NSA  surveillance  privacy 
november 2013 by Preoccupations
Press Freedom: The state goes for everyone (and you have no right to be surprised) » Spectator Blogs
"The political naivety of Britain’s liberals is as shocking as their failure to stick by basic principles. They imagined that once they let the beast of state power out of its cage, it would confine itself to savaging their enemies. If this week hasn’t taught them to heed Saul Bellow’s warning on suppression – ‘that if you hold down one thing, you hold down the adjoining’ – nothing will. My employers at the Guardian and Observer are now under attack by authoritarian forces for doing what journalists should do and investigating the secret state. They accuse us of treason and threatening national security. If they meant what they said, then they would charge us with breaking the Official Secrets Act and put us before an independent judge and jury. They won’t because we have not, as it happened, exposed Britain to danger, and no jury will convict us. … Instead of bringing in legislation that applies to everyone, and slashing the costs of going to the rich men’s law courts, politicians and celebrities want to censure writing they think damages national security or upsets some interest group without proving their case beyond reasonable doubt. Instead of juries we will have quangoes and committees. Instead of laws, we have ideologies and sensibilities."
press  press_freedom  democracy  newspapers  Spectator  Nick_Cohen  2013  surveillance  David_Cameron  Edward_Snowden  media  regulation 
october 2013 by Preoccupations
When Journalists Are Called Traitors: From the Spiegel Affair to Snowden : The New Yorker
"When a government calls journalists traitors the questions should begin, not end. … The argument, made by Parker and others, that rules can’t be revealed because if terrorists know what they are they’ll find ways to work around them, is as dangerous as it gets. We get to know the rules, so we can find ways to work through our lives and figure out who should be governing us and how. Governments get to keep some secrets, but the most important point to come out of the Snowden revelations is that they shouldn’t get to have secret laws. … The professional secret-keepers are phenomenally bad at distinguishing between the threat of terror and their terror at being threatened—or worse … at being humiliated. They need the press not just to shake them up but also to keep them from being destabilized by their own weaknesses and vanities. … Journalists have to defend journalists—not blindly, no matter what someone does, but without the sort of amour propre that leads one to think that only those who are disreputable will ever get in trouble. … reporters should be ready—for the wild stories governments tell and the charges they throw around, as well as for their secrets."
New_Yorker  USA  UK  GCHQ  NSA  Edward_Snowden  Guardian  journalism  2013 
october 2013 by Preoccupations
RUSI - In Defence of National Security Scrutiny
" a public unwilling to trust its political class with taxi receipts is asked to take blanket assurances that their privacy and security are protected. … The British public must take on trust that surveillance is necessary and proportionate. The British public must take on trust that oversight can happen entirely behind closed doors. And the British press should take on trust, without evidence, any claims of harms as a result of peeping behind the curtain. That seems like a lot to ask."
GCHQ  UK  surveillance  Edward_Snowden  2013  Guardian  James_Ball 
october 2013 by Preoccupations
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