More good stuff on surveillance – 8-15-13

There are a lot of articles discussing the surveillance world we now live in. I would like to comment on many of them in a full post. Alas, time does not permit.

Here is my second list of good stuff that I’d like talk about but only have time to recommend with a quick comment.

Here’s two new phrases for you:

  • Localized cloud
  • “Patriot-Act proof” – a new promo for cloud storage sites that aren’t in the U.S.

The Guardian – How Microsoft handed the NSA access to encrypted messages – Not sure I understand the exact implications of how the NSA gains access (…circumvent its encryption…pre-encryption stage access…easier access…”direct access”…), but it seems the door is wide open to read all data sent using Outlook, Hotmail, SkyDrive, and even Skype. Interesting tidbit in the article is that the FBI is the liaison between Microsoft and the NSA. Also that the data gathered by NSA is shared with both the FBI and CIA.

The article doesn’t explain how much of the cooperation is forced by court order and how much is voluntary.

New York Times – Other Agencies Clamor for Data N.S.A. Compiles – Sundry federal agencies get some data from the NSA trove.

Smaller intelligence units within the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Secret Service, the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security have sometimes been given access to the security agency’s surveillance tools for particular cases, 

But not as much as they want.

Agencies working to curb drug trafficking, cyberattacks, money laundering, counterfeiting, and even copyright infringement complain that their attempts to exploit the security agency’s vast resources have often been turned down.  I think that means such requests are often approved. 

CFO magazineHow Government Snooping Threatens the Cloud – Pressure is emerging in Europe for ‘localized cloud’ storage services that don’t have any data centers in the U.S. and that would be able to store data while not getting hovered up by the NSA. Emerging promo would be the services are “Patriot-Act proof”, which would be a major issue considering that in Europe many countries have actually serious privacy laws.

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