Everything is coming up roses at the NSA
Three weeks ago a federal court confirmed that as long as everyone's rights were being violated, then it doesn't matter if individual rights are violated.
A three-judge panel found a federal judge ruled correctly when he said the plaintiffs failed to provide sufficient evidence they were spied upon by the National Security Agency, a necessary step to establish standing in the case.
The plaintiffs, which include the Electronic Frontier Foundation, lamented the ruling, saying that establishing standing is impossible because the federal government was allowed to keep secret the identities of those subjected to the spying program.
These are glorious days for the NSA. Everything is going as planned.
The Worldwide Threats hearing was the first in more than two years and covered an array of issues including Afghanistan, domestic violent extremism, 5G and cybersecurity. As in previous hearings, Nakasone remained adamant that he wants to keep the focus of NSA on external threats, and he and other intelligence community leaders, including FBI Director Christopher Wray, emphasized public-private partnerships as the primary solution to “blind spots” in the U.S. cyber posture.
A public-private partnership is exactly what we are beginning to see, starting with the NSA's massive $10 billion contract with Amazon.
Then there's Apple backtracking on it's privacy policies. Microsoft and Google are also falling into line.
But to give you an idea of the level of cooperation, and it's results, consider the 2015 Juniper Network hack.
Those intruders haven’t yet been publicly identified, and if there were any victims other than Juniper, they haven’t surfaced to date. But one crucial detail about the incident has long been known — uncovered by independent researchers days after Juniper’s alert in 2015 — and continues to raise questions about the methods U.S. intelligence agencies use to monitor foreign adversaries.
The Juniper product that was targeted, a popular firewall device called NetScreen, included an algorithm written by the National Security Agency. Security researchers have suggested that the algorithm contained an intentional flaw — otherwise known as a backdoor — that American spies could have used to eavesdrop on the communications of Juniper’s overseas customers. NSA declined to address allegations about the algorithm.
Juniper’s breach remains important — and the subject of continued questions from Congress — because it highlights the perils of governments inserting backdoors in technology products.
None of that domestic spying makes you safer. It's just a way to keep you under control.