XKeyscore: NSA tool collects 'nearly everything a user does on the internet' - Glenn Greenwald [Guardian]

XKeyscore: NSA tool collects ‘nearly everything a user does on the internet’ – Glenn Greenwald [Guardian]

XKeyscore, a program identified by Edward Snowden, is an NSA tool that collects most everything a user does online. Glenn Greenwald has yet another piece of the whistleblower story at The Guardian.

A top secret National Security Agency program allows analysts to search with no prior authorization through vast databases containing emails, online chats and the browsing histories of millions of individuals, according to documents provided by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

The NSA boasts in training materials that the program, called XKeyscore, is its “˜widest-reaching’ system for developing intelligence from the internet.

Additional key points, as Greenwald summarizes:

“¢ NSA analysts require no prior authorization for searches
“¢ Sweeps up emails, social media activity and browsing history

The existence, or rather the confirmation of what Snowden had already indicated, of XKeyscore came

… as senior intelligence officials testify to the Senate judiciary committee on Wednesday, releasing classified documents in response to the Guardian’s earlier stories on bulk collection of phone records and Fisa surveillance court oversight.

Snowden, in a June 10 Guardian interview, said:

“˜I, sitting at my desk,’ … could “˜wiretap anyone, from you or your accountant, to a federal judge or even the president, if I had a personal email’.

As Greenwald reports, that claim was “vehemently denied” by U.S. officials, with Mike Rogers, Republican chair of the House intelligence committee, stating: “He’s lying. It’s impossible for him to do what he was saying he could do.”

Well, yes, he could, as the revelations of XKeyscore show.

Go to Greenwald’s piece to see multiple slides from the training materials for XKeyscore, as well as much more detail.

In other Big Brother news, yesterday the NY Times reported:

Warrantless Cellphone Tracking Is Upheld

In a significant victory for law enforcement, a federal appeals court on Tuesday said that government authorities could extract historical location data directly from telecommunications carriers without a search warrant.

The closely watched case, in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, is the first ruling that squarely addresses the constitutionality of warrantless searches of historical location data stored by cellphone service providers. Ruling 2 to 1, the court said a warrantless search was “˜not per se unconstitutional’ because location data was “˜clearly a business record’ and therefore not protected by the Fourth Amendment.

We need whistleblowers.

(XKeystore Capture Via The Guardian)