Saturday, December 24, 2005

NYT: NSA Spying Broader Than Bush Admitted

The National Security Agency has conducted much broader surveillance of e-mails and phone calls — without court orders — than the Bush administration has acknowledged, The New York Times reported on its Web site.

The NSA, with help from American telecommunications companies, obtained access to streams of domestic and international communications, said the Times in the report late Friday, citing unidentified current and former government officials.

The story did not name the companies.

Since the Times disclosed the domestic spying program last week, President Bush has stressed that his executive order allowing the eavesdropping was limited to people with known links to al-Qaida.

But the Times said that NSA technicians have combed through large volumes of phone and Internet traffic in search of patterns that might lead to terrorists.

The volume of information harvested from telecommunications data and voice networks, without court-approved warrants, is much larger than the White House has acknowledged, the paper said, quoting an unnamed official.

The story quoted a former technology manager at a major telecommunications firm as saying that companies have been storing information on calling patterns since the Sept. 11 attacks, and giving it to the federal government. Neither the manager nor the company he worked for was identified.

We have suspected for some time that a number of corporations have teamed up with BushCo to spy on Americans; to essentially gather data.
Among those suspected:
Banks and financial institutions
Telcoms and ISPs
Security companies (many of which did not exist prior to 9/11)
Health Insurance companies, including HMOs
Just to name a few!
There is, at the moment, no real difference in the U.S. government and the corporate world that buys politicians and rams their agendas through congress at will. We don't believe for one minute that these same corporations would not help the government spy on Americans, for all kinds of reasons, having nothing to do with terrorism.


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