• Tag Archives PRISM
  • RAND PAUL SPARS WITH CBS REPORTERS OVER GOV’T SURVEILLANCE: ‘JUST BECAUSE CONGRESS APPROVED IT, DOESN’T MAKE IT RIGHT’

    Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky isn’t afraid to disagree with his fellow Republicans — and he’s certainly not squeamish about debating with members of the American left or the media. During an exchange with CBS’s “This Morning,” the congressman went back-and-forth with hosts Charlie Rose, Norah O’Donnell and Gayle King about the ramifications of government surveillance.

    “I personally am trying to work within the law and change the law. I think that’s what my job is,” he said, declining to answer whether he views leaker Edward Snowden as a hero or a villain. “And I think we can jones the president on this, particularly his hypocrisy.”

    Rather than labeling the embattled 29-year-old in definitive terms, Paul said that he is reserving judgment (although he noted that the young man likely felt that coming forward with the information was the right thing to do in light of the government’s spying activity).

    When King asked about a recent Pew Research poll that found that the majority of Americans support the collection of phone records, the congressman said that the public would not be so supportive if they knew the full extent of the program’s ramifications.

    “Government has no right to this knowledge unless you’re accused of a crime, unless there’s probable cause,” he said, while going back and forth with the hosts.

    Full article: http://www.theblaze. … oesnt-make-it-right/


  • German government outraged by US snooping scandal

    The German government is demanding explanations from the US after it emerged that its secret spying programme Prism collected more information from Germany than any other EU country.

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel is expected to raise the issue when she receives US President Barack Obama in Berlin next week, her spokesman said on Monday (10 June).

    Data privacy is a very sensitive topic in Germany and the cluelessness of Merkel’s government about the affair may become an issue in September’s elections.

    “Everything we know we found out from the media,” interior minister Hans-Peter Friedrich said on Tuesday in a press conference in Berlin.

    Its head of domestic intelligence, Hans-Georg Maassen, standing beside Friedrich, added: “I knew nothing about it.”

    The ministry of interior is working on a questionnaire for the US government to find out the extent and the legal basis for the collection of data from Germany, he added.

    Similar information requests will be sent to Internet firms such as Google, Facebook, Yahoo and Apple, which were targeted by Prism, but which deny that US security staff got unlimited access to their servers.

    Germany’s hawkish interior minister – a Bavarian Christian-Social politician whose party is standing for re-election both on regional and national level in September – also indicated that US and German intelligence services co-operate well and that Prism might have “indirectly” helped Germany to prevent terrorist attacks.

    Meanwhile, German justice minister Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger, a Liberal politician, wrote in an op-ed for Spiegel Online that reports about Prism are “deeply worrying” and “dangerous.”

    She contradicted US leader Barack Obama, who recently said you cannot have 100 percent security and 100 percent privacy at the same time.

    “I do not share this view. A society is less free, the more its citizens are being surveilled, controlled and scrutinised. In a democratic system, security is not an end itself, but a means to ensure freedom,” she wrote.

    Full article: http://euobserver.com/justice/120455


  • NSA taps in to user data of Facebook, Google and others, secret files reveal

    The National Security Agency has obtained direct access to the systems of Google, Facebook, Apple and other US internet giants, according to a top secret document obtained by the Guardian.

    The NSA access is part of a previously undisclosed program called PRISM, which allows officials to collect material including search history, the content of emails, file transfers and live chats, the document says.

    The Guardian has verified the authenticity of the document, a 41-slide PowerPoint presentation – classified as top secret with no distribution to foreign allies – which was apparently used to train intelligence operatives on the capabilities of the program. The document claims “collection directly from the servers” of major US service providers.

    Although the presentation claims the program is run with the assistance of the comp