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Originally posted by Astronomer70
ImplementOfWar as long as NSA is restricted to monitoring only international traffic I have no problem with what they are doing. However, it would be a trivial matter that could be dealt with remotely, to change their filters to sort through essentially all traffic. I would be very much against that kind of snooping and would, on principle, be forced to adopt encryption. I'm not too worried about it just now because NSA does not have the resources to monitor everything--their systems would bog down and something potentially very important could be lost as a result.
SAN FRANCISCO, April 29 - The U.S. government has asked a federal judge to dismiss a lawsuit by a San Francisco civil liberties group against AT&T because it says the case could reveal military and state secrets.
The class-action suit by the group, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, on behalf of AT&T customers accuses the company of unlawful collaboration with the National Security Agency in its surveillance program to intercept telephone and e-mail communications between the United States and people linked to al Qaeda and affiliated organizations.
NSA has massive database of Americans' phone calls
The National Security Agency has been secretly collecting the phone call records of tens of millions of Americans, using data provided by AT&T, Verizon and BellSouth, people with direct knowledge of the arrangement told USA TODAY.
The NSA program reaches into homes and businesses across the nation by amassing information about the calls of ordinary Americans — most of whom aren't suspected of any crime. This program does not involve the NSA listening to or recording conversations. But the spy agency is using the data to analyze calling patterns in an effort to detect terrorist activity, sources said in separate interviews.
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS: The NSA record collection program
"It's the largest database ever assembled in the world," said one person, who, like the others who agreed to talk about the NSA's activities, declined to be identified by name or affiliation. The agency's goal is "to create a database of every call ever made" within the nation's borders, this person added.
and just one slip of the tongue and we will be tag easily.
Originally posted by Nygdan
With this Narus datamining programme or the NSA phone-logging programs, you don't even need to say anything to get tagged.
Police Got Phone Data From Brokers
Numerous federal and local law enforcement agencies have bypassed subpoenas and warrants designed to protect civil liberties and gathered Americans' personal telephone records from private-sector data brokers.
These brokers, many of whom advertise aggressively on the Internet, have gotten into customer accounts online, tricked phone companies into revealing information and even acknowledged that their practices violate laws, according to documents gathered by congressional investigators and provided to The Associated Press.
The law enforcement agencies include offices in the Homeland Security Department and Justice Department - including the FBI and U.S. Marshal's Service - and municipal police departments in California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia and Utah. Experts believe hundreds of other departments frequently use such services.
Catch 22 Alive and Well in Surveillance Lawsuit
The United States government says a lawsuit brought against AT&T over government surveillance must be dismissed because the state secrets privilege prevents the company from either admitting or denying the allegations.
Even if the program was found to be illegal, the government argues the court could not take action "because to do so would confirm" the allegations and put the country at risk.
"Finally the Administration has come out and flatly said what it has hinted at throughout its arguments: that the program is above the law," says a response from the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which filed the lawsuit alleging illegal electronic surveillance of private citizens.
Bank Data Secretly Reviewed by U.S. to Fight Terror
WASHINGTON, June 22 - Under a secret Bush administration program initiated weeks after the Sept. 11 attacks, counterterrorism officials have gained access to financial records from a vast international database and examined banking transactions involving thousands of Americans and others in the United States, according to government and industry officials.
The program is limited, government officials say, to tracing transactions of people suspected of ties to Al Qaeda by reviewing records from the nerve center of the global banking industry, a Belgian cooperative that routes about $6 trillion daily between banks, brokerages, stock exchanges and other institutions. The records mostly involve wire transfers and other methods of moving money overseas or into and out of the United States. Most routine financial transactions confined to this country are not in the database.
Viewed by the Bush administration as a vital tool, the program has played a hidden role in domestic and foreign terrorism investigations since 2001 and helped in the capture of the most wanted Qaeda figure in Southeast Asia, the officials said. The program, run out of the Central Intelligence Agency and overseen by the Treasury Department, "has provided us with a unique and powerful window into the operations of terrorist networks and is, without doubt, a legal and proper use of our authorities," Stuart Levey, an undersecretary at the Treasury Department, said in an interview Thursday. The program is grounded in part on the president's emergency economic powers, Mr. Levey said, and multiple safeguards have been imposed to protect against any unwarranted searches of Americans' records.
AT&T rewrites rules: Your data isn't yours
The new policy says that AT&T -- not customers -- owns customers' confidential info and can use it "to protect its legitimate business interests, safeguard others, or respond to legal process."
The policy also indicates that AT&T will track the viewing habits of customers of its new video service -- something that cable and satellite providers are prohibited from doing.
Media Refuses to Hold Surveillance Story
The Bush administration and The New York Times are again at odds over national security, this time with new reports of a broad government effort to track global financial transfers.
The newspaper, which in December broke news of an effort by the National Security Agency to monitor Americans' telephone calls and e- mails, declined a White House request not to publish a story about the government's inspection of monies flowing in and out of the country.
The Los Angeles Times also reported on the issue Thursday night on its Web site, against the Bush administration's wishes. The Wall Street Journal said it received no request to hold its report of the surveillance.