February 24, 2024

NSA Spying on Americans By Buying Their Internet Records, Sen. Wyden Claims

Democratic Oregon Senator Ron Wyden made a startling revelation on Thursday, claiming that the National Security Agency (NSA) has been purchasing domestic internet records of American citizens for years, spying on them without necessary warrants.

In his letter to intelligence chief Avril Haines, Wyden mentioned that US officials had fought to keep their ties with “shady” private companies a secret.

It was Wyden’s blocking of the appointment of a new NSA director that forced them to release the details, he added.

According to the Oregon Democrat, data brokers had been quietly obtaining and reselling the internet metadata of Americans without their consent.

Describing the practice as a “legal gray area”, he accused officials of exploiting it to circumvent legal procedures.

To obtain location data from mobile phones of American users, security officials would require a warrant. However, their arrangements with private companies allow them to work around it by routinely purchasing the necessary data.

He also went on to describe the activities of these companies as “not just unethical, but illegal”.

For years, Wyden’s office has been probing the sale of location data to the government, it said. The investigation uncovered several ties between the Department of Defense and companies that Wyden described as “shady”, accusing them of flagrantly violating people’s privacy.

Wyden expressed in his letter that the US government is in need of a wake-up call,  asking Ms. Haines to take inventory of the data in possession of the government already and remove any information that fails to meet the standard of consent.

The senator also called for rules that would only allow the government to purchase data that Americans have consented to be sold. “The U.S. government should not be funding and legitimizing a shady industry”, Wyden added.

Despite the details of the data purchases always being unclassified, the Pentagon tried hard to keep it under wraps.

However, Wyden recently blocked the NSA’s attempt to appoint a new director, forcing them to disclose the information.

According to him, intelligence agencies tried their best to maintain the secrecy around the practice as they intended to “keep the American people in the dark”.

Secretary of Defense and NSA Director Defend the Practice

Ron Wyden also released a letter from NSA director and Army General Paul M. Nakasone, where the latter can be seen detailing the NSA’s actions and justifying them.

Describing the acquired data as “commercially available information”, Nakasone claimed that such acquisitions are limited and did not include location data from automobiles.

The NSA does not purchase location data of phones that are “known to be used in the US”, he added, confirming that the agency acquires US-based  “non-content” data when there are communications between a US-based IP address and one located abroad.

Ronald S. Moultrie, the Under Secretary of Defense, defended the DoD’s acquisition of the said data in a separate letter.

There is no judicial opinion or law in the US that requires the department to get a court order before acquiring, accessing, or using any information that is equally available for private individuals, other US companies, and foreign adversaries to purchase, he mentioned.

However, Ryden believes that the legal landscape on the matter may have now changed, with the FTC taking action against a data broker earlier this month. Selling location data counts as an intrusion into the lives of consumers, the commission ruled.

It’s worth noting that Wyden’s disclosure of the practice comes at a time when the House Judiciary Committee and the House Intelligence Committee are fighting over efforts to outlaw such data purchases.

free coins
free coinsfree coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins
free coins

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *