Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Regarding the Snowden case

As you’ve probably heard the NSA is spying on all of us. They intercept everything and they plan to keep it forever in their databases. The reason I haven’t commented more on this is that I thought people already knew what was going on.

The NSA (and the similar agencies in other countries) can take advantage of the proliferation of new technologies. Back when people wrote letters they needed to physically open them and copy the contents. Now with computers and email it can be done automatically.
It used to be that each house had one phone and ‘taping’ the line was a complicated operation. Now we all have mobile phones and they are easy to compromise, it can be done automatically.

You really thought that the NSA had a budget of several billion dollars and tens of thousands of personnel in order to spy on a few goat herders in Afghanistan?

Can you protect yourself with encryption? We already know that NSA technicians worked with Microsoft in order to make Windows more ‘secure’ and it seems reasonable to assume that they have a similar relationship with Intel. So both PC hardware and software is compromised at the source. We also know that the largest internet companies work with them...

In the end all this information gives the NSA (and similar agencies) the opportunity to become a Super-Gestapo. What can a person do to prevent this? I simply don’t know.


  1. Government-installed backdoor: I am not certain that this is universal yet but encrypted content of a confiscated iPhone can certainly get retrieved in plaintext by Apple technicians, using a proprietary setup. So far, this "decrypting" requires a probable cause, court order and a physically confiscated phone delivered to Apple: the law-enforcement agencies keep complaining that Apple is taking too long to comply - there is several weeks of backlog because the demand from police and other agencies is high and only few people at Apple are serving them..

    There is a CPU identifier embedded in your internet traffic so even if you obscure your IP address, your non-encrypted online activity can be identified by NSA and tracked almost in real time.

  2. If everyone includes words from NSA's 'watch list' in every e-mail & communication, then NSA will struggle to sift the wheat from the chaff.





    At least their actions save having to invest in a Back-Up strategy. A FOIA request should result in the provision of your old data.

    BTW, I trust I'm not alone in detecting a certain hypocricy at US criticism of Russia and China for failing to detain fugitive Snowden, whilst simultaneously snooping on their communications?

    1. That’s a good point. No need to pay for online backup, just ask the NSA to give you your old files!