NSA Denies Wired’s Domestic Spying Story

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The head of the NSA, while taking questions from Congress yesterday, denied that his agency has a domestic spying program. This directly contradicts a story posted last week by Wired that claimed the agency used a supercomputer to spy on e-mail and phone calls around the globe.

Alexander said “No,” adding that the “NSA does not have the ability to do that in the United States.” Elaborating, Alexander added: “We don’t have the technical insights in the United States. In other words, you have to have [...] some way of doing that either by going to a service provider with a warrant or you have to be collecting in that area. We’re not authorized to do that, nor do we have the equipment in the United States to collect that kind of information.”
 

Dekoth-E-

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I will note that the phrase "We don't have the equipment in the united states". Doesn't meant they don't have the equipment in another part of the world.

I know, I know..tinfoil hat and such.
 

Elios

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BULLSHIT they been doing that since be for 9-11
HELL there was even a NOVA on it "The Spy Factory"
 

Azhar

Fixing stupid since 1972
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"We don't have the technical insight". Oh come on guys, you can do better than that. Even with a mere Barracuda web filter set on passive mode you can see incoming and outgoing traffic without users knowing any better. Now make the Barracuda-like server 1000x larger (supercomputer if you will) and link it to several major backbone servers. You have an efficient spying device.
 

Obi_Kwiet

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Yeah, but there is an obscurity through obscurity problem. It would be difficult to have the man power to do broad observation.
 

Elios

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"We don't have the technical insight". Oh come on guys, you can do better than that. Even with a mere Barracuda web filter set on passive mode you can see incoming and outgoing traffic without users knowing any better. Now make the Barracuda-like server 1000x larger (supercomputer if you will) and link it to several major backbone servers. You have an efficient spying device.

thats pretty much what they do
they have these devices on every major back bone entering the US
again go watch the NOVA "The Spy Factory"
 

TechLarry

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couldn't they tap into mae-east, mae-west, etc... and steal stuff ?
 

Elios

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Yeah, but there is an obscurity through obscurity problem. It would be difficult to have the man power to do broad observation.

oh really....
you have no idea how many annalists NSA employs its staggering
 

Elios

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couldn't they tap into mae-east, mae-west, etc... and steal stuff ?

they can and do and its all 100% passive and then funneled to holding data centers for more computers to decode and decide whats worth a human getting involved
 

Ualdayan

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The article said they were BUILDING the capacity to store vast quantities of data. Really - nothing has been refuted from the article since he just kept saying 'we do not have the capacity to do that' in the present tense.

If I was planning to build a house somewhere, I hadn't as of yet built it, you come along and ask me 'Hey, do you own a house over there?' I could honestly tell you 'No, I do not currently own a house there.'

(And that's assuming you trust the person answering your questions to just not outright lie to you and later claim they didn't lie but were simply 'misinformed'.)
 

DeathPrincess

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I will note that the phrase "We don't have the equipment in the united states". Doesn't meant they don't have the equipment in another part of the world.

I know, I know..tinfoil hat and such.

Why else do you think canada has data caps? Where's all the bandwidth going... I think it's pretty obvious now! :eek:
 

ianken

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LOL. So the gear the installed at AT&T and elsewhere with tel-cos that would cooperate do not actually exist even after the whistle blowing? LOL. Right. If they can snoop on inbound and outbound "international" calls they can snoop with impunity on, at least, long distance calls.

And the fact that the tel-cos are granted immunity under law from getting sued? Come on.
 
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I love my country but the current policies of current and some past administrations, quite frankly, frighten me. I used to be gun-ho about wanting to join the intelligence community in some form, but now, years later, I'm glad I didn't.

The faith I put in our leaders has greatly been diminished by the blatant word games they play with the Mr. John Q Public and shell games they play with Congress.

This article reminds me of when I try to get the truth out of my 12 year old. I already know the truth but I want to hear it from him. So unless I ask the EXACT right question, I won't get the full truth. Whatever happened to a YES being yes, and a NO being no (without the lies of omission)?

<steps off the soap box>
 

Ur_Mom

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I realize that, and my statement wasn't to equate the entities but instead was to make a point that often what is told to us by the entities (or the law) isn't always true.

Yea, I got that from your original post. It's a government agency, even if they flat out said they didn't, you couldn't believe them.

They do. And they will continue to do so. That's what they do.
 

VRMan

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tinfoil-hat1.jpg
 

travbrad

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The NSA has a track record of "denying" claims made by journalists/whistleblowers/etc, but a lot of them turn out to be true (years or decades later).

As many people have pointed out there are big holes in the wording of their denial as well. At first glance it seems like a denial but not if you really look at it closely.
 

Outamyhead

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I will note that the phrase "We don't have the equipment in the united states". Doesn't meant they don't have the equipment in another part of the world.

I know, I know..tinfoil hat and such.

Echelon upgrades, main hub for spying on European communications
 

ViperGrendal

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I thought it was the FBI that had all the domestic spying gear in place not the NSA. Then there's the secret service that also has a lot of domestic spying capabilities. So, I guess my point is there's no need for the NSA to admit to having the capability when another organization is controlling that front. Hell I was watching a show about the secret service the other day where they pretty much admitted to monitoring every single piece of communication that happens in the US and elsewhere.
 

Buxaroo

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I will note that the phrase "We don't have the equipment in the united states". Doesn't meant they don't have the equipment in another part of the world.

I know, I know..tinfoil hat and such.

They have the UKUSA agreement (the newer one isn't declassified of course). NSA has LOTS of facilities around the world that is capable of doing these things easily. And the UK/Australia can probably eavesdrop on our citizenry with the permission of the UKUSA agreement. It could be a neat workaround so their hands are clean. When someone in the UK circuit finds something going on over here, they probably send a dispatch to someone in the NSA and the NSA then sends it on to the FBI or the WH to go from there. I doubt we have to do the same thing for the UK because I think they are allowed within reason to spy on their own citizens, I have no clue tbh. It's just a guess.

But considering that the UK/USA agreements are always classified and never see the light of day until roughly 50 years after they are declassified, I will assume that the NSA has a few agreements with trusted entities like the UK and Australia to help out in this regard. Hell, some of the biggest NSA listening posts are smack dab in the middle of Australia and in quite a few places in the British Isles. They also have major posts in Turkey as well and several other areas that you wouldn't think about, but Britain and Australia are pretty much the same family, not just in culture and language but also in total alignment when it comes to our mutual interests around the world.

But I believe what he says though, that facility is probably just to add to their already huge infrastructure to gather intel outside of the US. And having it all in one place like Fort Meade isn't a good call if we get another 911 where instead of taking down office buildings, they take out our main intelligence gathering apparatus like Langley or Meade. And I think they know that. What better place to build something like this than out there where it's pretty damn easy to defend a facility like that from terrorists and suicidal planes. You see them coming a mile away. Literally ;)
 

Chimel

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The U.S. have been spying on their own citizens on a large scale since after WWII.
Was it Cryptonomicon or another book that described one of their facilities located in the U.K. that was analyzing all satellite traffic?

I thought that with the Patriot Act, they woudn't need to spy on the U.S. from outside the U.S. anymore, but it looks like they still do, from their answer about not having the equipment in the U.S.
 

xfile

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It's sad a lot of these jokers wipe their ass with the US Constitution.

My rule of thumb....it's not a conspiracy when the facts support it.
 

kontact

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There is a video on youtube where a Canadian guy shows with tracert that his connection was going through a USA DoD hop. He claims they were spying on him because he goes to lots of leftist political websites. Looked for the video again but can't find it or I would post it.
 

XBarbarian

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forget worrying about the tyrannical state.

we have it

look into "Technocracy"

crazy humanist ideals like the Constitution... long long dead
 

Azhar

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There is a video on youtube where a Canadian guy shows with tracert that his connection was going through a USA DoD hop. He claims they were spying on him because he goes to lots of leftist political websites. Looked for the video again but can't find it or I would post it.

He's been blackbagged! :eek:
 

fairlane

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Steve Gibson talked about this on SecurityNow on Wednesday's episode. They are in fact, building a "super, supercomputer" in Utah, but are using it to crack old communications using older, outdated crypto (e.g 64bit). They do archive and have archived, communications from other countries (e.g China) for years, but are only now just able to build a computer capable of cracking those communications that have used the older crypto. Today's standards of using 128 and 256bit keys are still safe and no match for even this NSA "supercomputer", so I wouldn't worry folks.
 

whiz187

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Take Vietnam for an example. Speak out against the country, verbally or on the net, bad mouth a government politician and you have earned yourself 10 years in prison. Do not pass go, do not collect 200 bucks.

So, if I say," Obama is a lying sack of crap" , you don't think the NSA has a sniffer that picks up on this?

Hell, we just got our PG&E bill. They sent a graph showing our typical 24 hour usage, to the minute, and compared it to others in the neighborhood. Lets hear it for Smart Meters.
 

EchtoGammut

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We have agreements with Australia, Britain, Canada and a few other countries that in return for them tapping our lines, we will tap theirs and feed the data back. There is no conspiricy, this has gone on for a while and has been used in court cases. It is funny that congress only became curious about this after an article on Wired. As a footnote, the NSA has been caught lying 4 times that I can recall, but has never faced anykind of punishments for lying before congress.
 
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