We begin with an animation from Mark Fiore:
Li’l NSA Spy Kit
Every week, and sometimes every day, there is a new revelation about the shady practices of the NSA. After the news broke that the spy agency targeted thirty-five heads of state, not to mention the head of the UN, General Keith Alexander and Obama were on the defensive again and the cartoon ideas were frolicking in my head. More at http://www.markfiore.com
Next, a point we’ve made repeatedly in discussions with friends and family now confirmed. From Common Dreams:
Scared Silent: NSA Surveillance has ‘Chilling Effect’ on American Writers
New report published by PEN America found writers self-censoring as a result of spy revelations
Here’s one telling graphic from the report [[PDF]:
From Techdirt, getting some Sense[nbrunner]:
Author Of The PATRIOT Act Goes To EU Parliament To Admit Congress Failed, And The NSA Is Out Of Control
from the didn’t-see-that-coming dept
From EUobserver, hear no evil, see no evil, and speak no evil:
Tech giants plead innocence to MEPs on US snooping
Executives from three of the world’s biggest IT firms – Facebook, Google and Microsoft – have told MEPs they did not give US intelligence services “unfettered” access to people’s private data.
The Guardian cites Big Brotherly paternalism:
John Kerry: world leaders have been understanding about NSA leaks
US secretary of state says foreign governments understand that Barack Obama did not order all phone and internet surveillance
Making sense of the trade representative’s involvement with Techdirt:
If The NSA Isn’t Engaged In Economic Espionage, Why Is The USTR Considered ‘A Customer’ Of Intelligence?
from the simple-questions dept
Tell us, are you surprised? From Spiegel:
Germans Rejected: US Unlikely to Offer ‘No-Spy’ Agreement
Senior German intelligence officials met with their NSA and CIA counterparts in the US last week to start trust-rebuilding efforts between the estranged allies. While a “no-spy” agreement seems unlikely, Merkel might learn what Snowden could still reveal.
The Guardian covers press-baiting:
Counter-terror chief renews fight for ‘snooper’s charter’
Charles Farr tells MPs that public’s data was never collected by GCHQ and claims Snowden leaks damaged GCHQ’s work
From Spiegel, a Quixotic quest?:
Spy-Proofing: Deutsche Telekom Pushes for All-German Internet
Recent revelations about NSA spying have given fresh impetus to the dream of a purely German Internet. Deutsche Telekom believes it could introduce a system safe from prying foreign surveillance, but some criticize the plan as pointless.
From the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Deeplinks Blog, sinister spin:
The House Intelligence Committee’s Misinformation Campaign About the NSA
Rep. Mike Rogers, Chair of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI), is a busy man. Since June, he (and HPSCI) have been all over the media with press statements, TV appearances, and tweets, relentlessly trying to persuade the public that the National Security Agency (NSA) is merely doing its job when it collects innocent Americans’ calling records, phone calls, and emails.
The Verge encapsulates:
The edge of the abyss: exposing the NSA’s all-seeing machine
We now know that nearly five decades after its creation, the NSA began to operate what would become a global surveillance network of breathtaking scale. Today, it collects records about every phone call placed in the United States. It works with overseas partners and telecommunications companies to directly tap into the arteries of the internet, and scoops up massive amounts of data including emails, chats, VoIP calls, and more. It collects billions of records every year, many belonging to ordinary US citizens with no suspicion of wrongdoing.
From the Moscow Times, a look at the leaker:
Lawyer Says ‘Lonely’ Snowden Living on Donations
U.S. intelligence leaker Edward Snowden has used up most of his money for food, rent and private bodyguards, and is living on donations from public organizations and ordinary Russians, his lawyer said in an interview published Tuesday.
More from Xinhua:
Snowden not paid for revealing information: lawyer
Edward Snowden was not paid for revealing classified information, his lawyer Anatoly Kucherena said.
The lawyer said Snowden’s financial situation proved he was an altruist.
The lawyer said he had to help Snowden “not only legally but in everyday life as well.”
From Ars Technica, reasonable requests:
ACLU to law enforcement: Tell us how you get users’ search history, data
More questions: Are warrants required? Can you intercept searches in real time?
On Tuesday, the American Civil Liberties Union announced that it had filed a formal request (PDF) under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), asking various federal judicial agencies what “policies, procedures, and practices [are] followed to obtain search queries from search engine operators for law enforcement purposes.” The ACLU also asked if a warrant or another legal process is required to make requests and if requests can be intercepted in real time.
The Irish Times covers tightening of freedom of information laws on the Emerald Isle:
Attempt to postpone changes to FoI regime unsuccessful
Brendan Howlin to introduce additional fees for applications with multiple requests
And the Asahi Shimbun covers another Island’s radpicaly developing security state:
Foreign policy adviser Yachi picked to head NSC secretariat
A foreign policy aide to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has overcome his reluctance and agreed to serve as the first head of the secretariat under the planned National Security Council, sources said. The Abe administration has decided to name Shotaro Yachi, 69, as the first secretariat head of the council that will be established in January, they said. The NSC is designed to chart the course of Japan’s foreign and security policies.
A parallel story, also from the Asahi Shimbun, and notable for being notable:
SDF members on secret duties must undergo rigorous background checks
Self-Defense Forces members tapped for duties involving secrets are required to declare a host of personal background information, such as the people they know and their own thoughts on various issues.
The Daily Dot covers another form of cyber-security:
Anonymous aims to shut down Utah boarding school over abuse allegations
The hacktivist collective Anonymous has launched a campaign against a Utah boarding school for troubled teenagers after testimonies of alleged abuse surfaced four weeks ago online.
From Nextgov, cyber insecurity, Obamacare edition:
CMS Manager Who Approved HealthCare.gov Launch Never Received Key Security Memos
A top Obamacare technology official was not informed of high-level security risks before he recommended the HealthCare.gov launch, according to closed-door congressional testimony released late Monday night.
The Irish Times cover the theft of credit card details of nearly 400,000 people across Europe, plus an additional 1.1 million whose names, addresses, telephone numbers, and emails were hacked:
Over 1.5 million affected by Ennis data breach
Data Protection Commissioner investigates major security breach at Co Clare-based company which manages customer loyalty schemes across Europe
From the Daily Dot, information insecurity Down Under:
Outdated copyright law makes memes illegal in Australia
Here are a few things you can’t do in Australia: Post a YouTube video of yourself in a homemade Super Mario Brothers costume, stream music from your iPhone during a funeral, or share just about any Internet meme on your Facebook wall.
And for our final item, DVICE covers evasion:
Take on the NSA and Google with arkOS, your own at-home server
The NSA scandal has ruffled the feathers of even the biggest birds in the Internet eyrie. Google slaughters whatever services it sees fit, despite public outcry. These are grave days for the little people of the Internet. But one 23-year-old developer has planted his flag in the ground, hoping to give us all a little of our own online power back.