Surveillance & Privacy

02 September 2013

U.S. spy agencies mounted 231 offensive cyber-operations in 2011, documents show Washington Post

U.S. intelligence services carried out 231 offensive cyber-operations in 2011, the leading edge of a clandestine campaign that embraces the Internet as a theater of spying, sabotage and war, according to top-secret documents obtained by The Washington Post.

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U.S. spy network's successes, failures and objectives detailed in 'black budget' summary Washington Post

U.S. spy agencies have built an intelligence-gathering colossus since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, but remain unable to provide critical information to the president on a range of national security threats, according to the government's top-secret budget.

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01 September 2013

The web giants pumping us for data The Observer

Should you be looking for an example of hucksterish cynicism, then the mantra that "data is the new oil" is as good as they come. Although its first recorded utterance goes as far back as 2006, in recent times it has achieved the status of an approved corporate cliche, though nowadays "data" is generally qualified by the adjective "big". And if you want a measure of how deeply the cliche has penetrated the collective unconscious, ponder this: a Google search for "big data" turns up more than 1.5bn results. And a search for "data mining" turns up 167m results.

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Britain Cites Grave Risks in Leaked Data It Seized New York Times

A standoff between the British government and The Guardian over national security and press freedom entered its latest round on Friday when the high court extended police powers to analyze encrypted material seized from the partner of one of the newspaper's journalists this month.

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31 August 2013

Microsoft and Google to sue over US surveillance requests The Guardian

Microsoft and Google are to sue the US government to win the right to reveal more information about official requests for user data. The companies announced the lawsuit on Friday, escalating a legal battle over the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (Fisa), the mechanism used by the National Security Agency (NSA) and other US government agencies to gather data about foreign internet users.

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Facebook's New Face Recognition Policy Astonishes German Privacy Regulator PC World

A German privacy regulator is astonished that Facebook has added facial recognition to a proposed new privacy policy it published on Thursday.

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30 August 2013

U.S. plans reports on secret court orders to telecom providers Reuters

The U.S. intelligence community has pledged to disclose more data about government surveillance programs by reporting annually how many secret court orders are issued to telecommunications companies under certain legal rules.

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NSA paying U.S. companies for access to communications networks Washington Post

The National Security Agency is paying hundreds of millions of dollars a year to U.S. companies for clandestine access to their communications networks, filtering vast traffic flows for foreign targets in a process that also sweeps in large volumes of American telephone calls, e-mails and instant messages.

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Obama's intelligence czar vows to release his own transparency report Washington Post

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper will begin releasing annual reports about the National Security Agency's surveillance activity in the coming months, a spokesperson for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence has confirmed.

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Facebook to Update Privacy Policy, but Adjusting Settings Is No Easier New York Times

Facebook announced Thursday that it planned to enact changes to its privacy policies on Sept. 5.

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28 August 2013

Australian Greens call for online privacy laws in wake of Snowden case The Guardian

The Greens have called for a major overhaul of laws governing the private information the government is allowed to collect and share with other countries in the wake of the Edward Snowden case.

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Government requests to Facebook outlined in report BBC News

Governments around the world requested information on about 38,000 Facebook users in the first six months of 2013.

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27 August 2013

Facebook to compensate users for sharing details on ads BBC News

Approximately 614,000 Facebook users whose personal details appeared in ads on the site without their permission will each receive a $15 (£9.65) payout.

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N.S.A. Phone Data Collection Is Illegal, A.C.L.U. Says New York Times

In a detailed legal attack on the National Security Agency's collection of Americans' phone call data, the American Civil Liberties Union argued in court papers filed Monday that the sweeping data gathering violates the Constitution and should be halted.

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Boom Triggered By NSA: German Email Services Report Surge in Demand Der Spiegel

German email providers are enjoying a jump in demand following the NSA data surveillance scandal. Companies are beefing up their security features and promoting their accounts as being among the most secure in the world, thanks in part to strong privacy laws.

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26 August 2013

Surveillance Revelations Shake U.S.-German Ties New York Times

Continuing revelations, based on documents leaked by Edward J. Snowden, of sweeping American digital surveillance around the world are rattling the close ties between the United States and Germany.

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Internet launches fightback against state snoopers Financial Times

Key architects of the internet have started to fight back against US and UK snooping programmes by drawing up an ambitious plan to defend traffic over the world wide web against mass surveillance.

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25 August 2013

NSA Officers Spy on Love Interests Wall Street Journal

National Security Agency officers on several occasions have channeled their agency's enormous eavesdropping power to spy on love interests, U.S. officials said.

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24 August 2013

Edward Snowden NSA files: secret surveillance and our revelations so far The Guardian

In the 11 weeks since the Guardian published its first revelations from top-secret material leaked by the NSA contractor Edward Snowden, the paper has published more than 300 stories on the surveillance state and the political fallout from the revelations.

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New Zealand appears to have used NSA spy network to target Kim Dotcom Ars Technica

A new examination of previously published affidavits from the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) -- the New Zealand equivalent of the National Security Agency (NSA) -- appears to suggest that the GCSB used the "Five Eyes" international surveillance network to capture the communications of Kim Dotcom, the founder of Megaupload.

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NSA paid millions to cover Prism compliance costs for tech companies The Guardian

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.

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UK government given Tuesday deadline over David Miranda data The Guardian

The high court has given the government until Tuesday night to provide detailed evidence about why it wants the right to trawl and share data seized using terror laws from the partner of a Guardian journalist.

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23 August 2013

Edward Snowden leaks reveal UK’s secret Middle-East internet surveillance base The Independent

Britain runs a secret internet-monitoring station in the Middle East to intercept and process vast quantities of emails, telephone calls and web traffic on behalf of Western intelligence agencies, The Independent has learnt.

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US intelligence services go 'on the record' with new Tumblr blog The Guardian

As scrutiny of the activities of the US National Security Agency (NSA) continues, a new Tumblr blog launched by the Office of the Director of National Security is promising more transparency on "lawful foreign surveillance activities" carried out by US agencies.

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NSA Responds To Criticism Over Surveillance Programs Dark Reading

The NSA has hit back after mounting criticism about its ability to intercept Web communications domestically, claiming that reports of its capabilities are "inaccurate and misleading."

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