Friday, August 23, 2013

NSA Paid GOOGLEFACEBOOK Millions To Spy on Taxpayers...

NSA paid millions to cover Prism compliance costs for tech companies - Ewen MacAskill/The Guardian ◼ Via Drudge

The National Security Agency paid millions of dollars to cover the costs of major internet companies involved in the Prism surveillance program after a court ruled that some of the agency's activities were unconstitutional, according to top-secret material passed to the Guardian.

The technology companies, which the NSA says includes Google, Yahoo, Microsoft and Facebook, incurred the costs to meet new certification demands in the wake of the ruling from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance (Fisa) court.

The October 2011 judgment, which was declassified on Wednesday by the Obama administration, found that the NSA's inability to separate purely domestic communications from foreign traffic violated the fourth amendment.

While the ruling did not concern the Prism program directly, documents passed to the Guardian by whistleblower Edward Snowden describe the problems the decision created for the agency and the efforts required to bring operations into compliance. The material provides the first evidence of a financial relationship between the tech companies and the NSA.

Lawmakers Probing Intentional Abuses of Power by NSA Analysts - Bloomberg

“I am reviewing each of these incidents in detail,” Dianne Feinstein, a California Democrat and chairman of the Senate intelligence panel, said in a statement, after the NSA confirmed to Bloomberg News today that some analysts deliberately ignored restrictions on their authority to spy on Americans....

The incidents, chronicled by the NSA’s inspector general, provide additional evidence that U.S. intelligence agencies sometimes have violated the legal and administrative restrictions on domestic spying, and may add to the pressure to bolster laws that govern intelligence activities....

President Barack Obama told CNN in an interview broadcast today he is confident no one at the NSA is “trying to abuse this program or listen in on people’s e-mail.”

As an aside:
Who leaked the Snowden documents about Britain’s secret Middle Eastern base to a British paper? - HotAir

There are, supposedly, only two newspapers Snowden is working with: The Guardian and the Washington Post. (The NYT, wanting in on some of this Snowden action, announced today that it’s launched a partnership with the Guardian to that effect.)