Administration and congressional officials said members of the House and Senate intelligence committees had been briefed in detail about collection activities on multiple occasions.
One official said the intelligence panels also provided information on the program to any other lawmaker who sought it. Discover Thomson Reuters. Directory of sites. United States.
Mark Hosenball , John Whitesides. Related Coverage. Verizon order casts spotlight on secretive U. That September, after my interview with Snowden was published, 43 members of Unit quit their posts in moral protest. They said data were gathered on sexual orientations, infidelities, money problems, family medical conditions, and other private matters and then used as tools of coercion — to force targets into becoming Israeli collaborators, for example. In a top-secret memo dated Oct.
The agency could, say, smear individuals it believed were radicalizing others in an effort to diminish their influence. Obama, meanwhile, has taken virtually no steps to fix what ails his spying apparatus. But this represents a rare tremor in the surveillance state. More consistently, Obama has limited oversight. While keeping critics at bay, the Obama administration has gone after people blowing the whistle on intelligence abuses. The Justice Department has charged eight leakers — more than double the number under all previous presidents combined. It demands democratic accountability.
Obama: "Nobody is listening to your telephone calls"
In the surveillance state Obama has built, this deluge threatens to bury the few needles that might exist — warnings of attacks, signals of radicalizing groups, rallying cries of extremist recruiters — even deeper in the proverbial haystack. So, too, does encryption: Once a tool used mostly by spy agencies and militaries, encryption is becoming commonplace in everyday digital chatter to keep government eyes and ears out. Gmail offers it. WhatsApp began providing its billion-plus users with automatic encryption in April.
In July, Facebook announced that it would soon give the option of end-to-end encryption on its Messenger app. More services will surely follow. Speed is a critical component in breaking encryption because most codes are based on factoring extremely large prime numbers.
Obama, though, signed an executive order in July urging the creation of an exaflop supercomputer — a machine about 30 times faster than anything in existence. It would be capable of conducting more than a quintillion 1,,,,,, operations per second. That year, the agency secretly built a ,square-foot facility at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee, the same place where the Manhattan Project developed the atomic bomb.
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Its research focuses on hitting the computing speed that would not only give the agency an edge over encryption, but also provide it with better cataloging capabilities to tackle the ocean of data already arriving daily at complexes like the one in Bluffdale, Utah. By , the British agency hoped to have cracked the encryption of 15 major internet companies.
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Its science breaks all the rules. Today, data are stored in binary bits — either ones or zeros — but in quantum computing, so-called qubits could be both one and zero at the same time. This would allow for almost incomprehensible operating speeds. Ultrafast computing could be a game-changer in U. It would break the last line of defense against government intrusion.
The Government is Tracking your Phone Calls
After the White House panel set up to review NSA surveillance in suggested halting efforts to undermine commercial encryption, the president demurred. Whoever wins the upcoming presidential election will probably do just that. Trump has also said NSA reconnaissance is just a fact of modern American life. Whistleblowers, it seems, would not fare well under a Trump administration.
How big is too big, though, is a question the outgoing president has never answered fully. At what point does gathering data become an end in itself, rather than a means to an end? Is the U. Correction, Sept. He also writes and produces documentaries for PBS.
Sign up for free access to 1 article per month and weekly email updates from expert policy analysts. The Washington Free Beacon reports At any rate, it makes us no worse off than we were before, remarked Mary. I saw nothing, but I heard a voice somewhere cry - Jane!
obama phone surveillance
They could always talk; and their discourse, witty, pithy, original, had such charms for me, that I preferred listening to, and sharing in it, to doing anything else. After nearly eight years under President Barack Obama, there is one fact that is undeniable — his presidency has been bad for the U. Barack Obama, state senator Million Man March: Barack Obama, the uniter across party lines, across religions, across racial divides, wasn't always Mr. Eliphalet Morley said: Hillary Clinton was provided the exact questions she would be asked by daytime talk show host Steve Harvey, according to a report.
By Joel Hruska on June 17, at pm; Comment.