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Thanks to the zealous wackos at the Department of Homeland Security, back in 2007 during the latter part of the Bush administration an order went out that all workers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena--an organization that is run under contract to NASA by the California Institute of Technology, had to be vetted for high security clearance in order to continue doing their jobs. Never mind that not one of them was or is engaged in secret activities (NASA is a rigorously non-military, scientific agency which not only publishes all its findings, but which invites the active participation of scientists from around the world). In order to continue working at JPL, even scientists who had been with NASA for decades were told they would need a high-level security badge just to enter the premises. To be issued that badge, they were told they would need to agree undergo an intensive FBI check that would look into their prior life history, right back to college.
[...]Not surprisingly, many scientists and engineers at JPL took umbrage at this extreme invasion of their private lives. Neighbors and old colleagues and acquaintances, ex-spouses, etc. were going to be interrogated about their drug-use history, their drinking habits, their juvenile arrest records, their sexual orientation-all those things that prying agents like to get into when doing a security clearance background check--as if they were applying for positions in the CIA or the Secret Service.
[...]Robert Nelson, an astronomer who spearheaded an effort to prevent this pointless security effort, together with 27 other angry JPL scientists, sued JPL and the federal government in federal court. They lost initially at the district court level but won a permanent injunction at the Ninth Circuit Appellate Court. That could have been the end of it, but unfortunately, the Obama administration appealed, and in 2011 when their case got to the Roberts Supreme Court, which rarely meets an invasive government security demand it doesn’t like, the scientists lost.
[...]Take Amanda Hendrix. She tells ThisCantBeHappening!, “I left JPL after 12 years (and with a good position and lots of opportunities) because I was very unhappy about the new badging requirements, particularly since they didn't make sense to me for scientists like myself who require no access to top-secret-type materials. It was extremely disappointing to me that an institution like JPL would subject their long-time employees to such measures in order to keep their jobs.”
[...]Not everyone who quit over this issue was a scientist. Susan Foster, a senior science writer at JPL, began her career there working as a secretary in 1968, even before the first Apollo moon landing. She says she quit solely because of the NASA requirement that she submit to a “waiving of my Fourth Amendment rights or be denied access to the facility” where she had worked for 44 years. She is currently unemployed and looking for work.
[...] There are no secrets at JPL, except perhaps for the temporary one about what it was that the Curiosity rover discovered in its early soil sampling on Mars (and that proved to be not worth all the secrecy either!).
As for history books, the whole mission is for the history books, That’s not to rule out the possibility of truly big news. It won’t be earthshaking, but it will be interesting.
Originally posted by Arken
Thanks to the zealous wackos at the Department of Homeland Security, back in 2007 during the latter part of the Bush administration an order went out that all workers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena--an organization that is run under contract to NASA by the California Institute of Technology, had to be vetted for high security clearance in order to continue doing their jobs.
Originally posted by Arken
Do you really think that NASA is a Glass Dome? Do you really think that NASA do not manipulate any single data/image (before the public release) that come from Space/Moon/Mars?
This fundamental article puts in evidence the incredible and the paranoic secrecy obsession that encircles the Space missions and what from they it could gush. "Every single data" must be scrupulously sifted and to pass through the censorship of military/intelligence, before the public release.
Originally posted by digital01anarchy
reply to post by Arken
the problem is in a nut shell people have no clue what they give away just talking about work in general. i have worked in a critical data center for a very big very well known company that supplies people with power I'm sure you can guess the name. While connecting patch panels I thought I would take a picture of the data center to use in my digital resume. Funny thing is I'm a information security major and should have known better. That one picture when I realized what I had on it could create a pathway for hackers its showed switches "the brand" its showed labels ect lol while small it could be enough to help some hacker. I deleted it quickly. Imagine working for nasa and having the Chinese, Russians and every other country trying to steal your data all the time. How do I know these countries are doing this I have met someone who was the head of data security at JPL in a lecture he told the class its normal. Like i said information security major
you need to think about the way countries act with uncovered information. Think about this scenario someone social engineers a way into the network with a high clearance. The find top secret data on a lets say new satellite they steal it then build a satellite with the capabilities to hold lets say a warhead instead of a high powered camera.edit on 9-7-2013 by digital01anarchy because: (no reason given)
The controversy began in 2004 when NASA, then under the direction of Michael Griffin, ordered all scientists working at JPL to undergo comprehensive, open-ended background checks ? beyond the standard pre-hiring reviews for federal employees ? or risk losing their jobs.
NASA maintains it was following an executive order from President George W. Bush, who issued the rule to tighten security following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Yet Bush's original order did not mention background investigations; the staff at NASA headquarters added them later.
Other departments covered by Bush's tightened rule, such as the Department of Energy, did not institute similar checks for scientists doing unclassified research, the NASA scientists say. Agreeing to these background checks would hand the government free rein to investigate every aspect of their lives, including their financial and medical records, they argue.