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NSA takes one-two punch to the face

Anonymous Coward

Note to UK government ...

Most of the domestic spying system put in place by the Bush administration in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks has since been dismantled.

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Re: Note to UK government ...

And what happened to the Bush government ?

Lessons have been learned .....

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Meanwhile on this side of the pond...

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Anonymous Coward

"Meanwhile on this side of the pond..."

We have BT...(who still own 95% of the UK backbone links).

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Gimp

"Three of the four spying programs (that we are aware of) have been abandoned"

The rest are operating BAU.

If you are unable to verify a statement how can you know if it's true?

I think you've be very foolish to think the NSA does not have a Plan B to continue what their management seems to think is their "sacred" mission to spy on everyone, all the time, forever.

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Re: "Three of the four spying programs (that we are aware of) have been abandoned"

I don't doubt they have invoked another plan that is currently under the radar. The trick is make it harder for them to find accomplices and easier for whistleblowers to come out of the shadows. The next whistleblower will be believed while the earlier ones were often ignored.

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Re: "Three of the four spying programs (that we are aware of) have been abandoned"

@John Smith 19

Yes, the NSA takes the long view of surveillance, not letting little roadblocks like the failure to sell Congress on the Clipper Chip, or NSA discomfort with ACTUALLY scrubbing U.S. citizens data from its various databases, per the letter of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

This you can see from the NSA's efforts over the past couple decades to water down post-Clipper encryption by subverting standards/vendors, or increasingly moving its surveillance operations offshore to places like the UK and Australia or outsourcing them to allied sigint agencies that can surveil Americans all they want, or by just keeping the FISA court in the dark about what is really going on.

(I could say more, but some guys in black are abseiling through my windows. Nooo!! Not the Taser! And this black bag over my head smells funny in a not ha-ha way.)

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Re: "Three of the four spying programs (that we are aware of) have been abandoned"

> what their management seems to think is their "sacred" mission to spy on everyone, all the time, forever.

Isn't that what everyone thinks the NSA's mission is?

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Big Brother

Re: "Three of the four spying programs (that we are aware of) have been abandoned"

I could say more, but some guys in black are abseiling through my windows.

Be sure not to let them overcharge you for information retrieval.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "Three of the four spying programs (that we are aware of) have been abandoned"

Yes. the difference is that if it's illegal, then at least it won't be routinely used to combat domestic crime or misdemeanors. ubiquitous surveillance is the most dangerous when everyone knows its happening and when its regularly used to change people their behavior.

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Gimp

"t's illegal, then at least it won't be routinely used to combat domestic crime"

It already has been, with the DEA falsifying the source of some information against drug dealers where the "confidential informant" was in fact the NSA supplying phone and email data (although following their SOP this was probably a digested version, no direct quotes etc).

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Unhappy

"Be sure not to let them overcharge you for information retrieval."

Indeed. Electrocuted and bankrupt.

BTW Terry Gilliam always said he did not make up that idea for "Brazil." He said he got it from a report that some political prisoners had received essentially a bill for "time and materials" for their interrogation.

Water, electricity and skilled labor is expensive.

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Just four words to say

Thank you, EDWARD SNOWDEN!

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Anonymous Coward

Tricky to have certainty about anything here...

The NSA seem blissfully indifferent to having their tools leaked all over the net and used for ransomware. What else are they up to now, that we'll learn about in the next decade....??? Chances are it won't be good...

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Anonymous Coward

The NSA are the bad guys

Remember that.

:: This post has been recorded for 'training' purposes ::

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There are some courts that are not toadies of the fascist system

UK and Canadian governments and their fascist political parties shamed by still functional US courts which uphold democratic rights. There is still some validity to the phrase - 'Land of the brave, home of the free'.

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Re: There are some courts that are not toadies of the fascist system

Whilst you are no doubt going to get down-voted, I have to agree somewhat.

America is the first country that we all tend to think of when shit starts rolling downhill, and they are up to a lot of shit, then it all rolls downhill to the rest of us.

However, America is usually the only country that manages to muster up some kind of defence and motivation to challenge the powers that be - unfortunately that doesn't tend to roll downhill.

Eventually America might end up with some degree of balance and checks in their system, whilst the rest of us suffocate under a mountain of rolling shit.

I've often thought that it would be nice to take the positive traights of each nation and roll them into one nation without all the negatives. For example, I love the American positivity in the face of overwhelming reality (but I don't like the arrogance/ignorance that often goes with it).

I liked the British stoicism (don't see much of that anymore sadly) and sheer grit, but I don't like their holier than thou mentality (in the face of overwhelming reality etc. ;) )

The French have (had?) this great militant attitude to authority if it pissed them off. We used to moan about them blocking up the ports and setting huge piles of sheep on fire, but I miss those days - everyone seems to have lost their bollocks, and I know why...

Self-censorship. If you think that you might get a knock on the door in the middle of the night because of something you said that someone in power didn't like (and they'll know because they're spying on everything you say and do) then you adjust your behaviour.

This frog is boiled.

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Unhappy

"Eventually America might end up..some degree of balance and checks in their system,"

"America will always do the right thing. After it had done everything else." Winston Churchill.

It might take a long time before they get to the right thing however.

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"Two sets of judges rule for citizens and against government"

Just a minor technical point: in a democracy, aren't the citizens the government that elects an administration to run things?

Stop calling these clowns "the government"; that gives them much more scope than they are supposed to have.

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I suppose calling them elected representatives would be both more, and less, accurate at the same time?

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Joke

@SirSpoon as long as we don't get fooled into thinking that they represent the people who elected them.

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An appointment with fate

As much as one may like to believe judges are working with good judgment... they are appointees (sic).

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No to little Batistas

When unelected bodies have free secrete access to private information of millions, they have the chance of becoming little Batistas and often seems to be the case with time....The only way to stop abuse of power is to notify the person whose information is accessed by anyone about the identity of the body/person and specific purpose of accessing that information. If a person is suspect, s/he should be notified and asked to explain the suspicious activity before further steps are taken. The government of the people cannot be without the consent of the governed every step of the process to defend the greater good for the benefit of all in a polity. Otherwise, little Batistas will destroy the whole society...

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No Secret here

The fact that the NSA is collecting EVERYTHING we do on phones and the internet was publicly documented years ago. The article is still up. Here ya go: https://www.wired.com/2012/03/ff_nsadatacenter/

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