View Poll Results: Do you support government monitoring online communications?
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Yes, if it helps them catch people who may want to harm us.
No. The internet should not be monitored.
Thread: Do You Have a Secret?
August 1st, 2012, 09:44 PM #1
Do You Have a Secret?
Do you have a secret?
What are your thoughts on the government spying on you?
August 1st, 2012, 09:57 PM #2
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Tricky question without enough answers.
I say if the government wants to keep an eye on public venues on the interwebs, have it it. It's public, not private, and if you're dumb enough to post your private business to the public, you deserve what you get.
But for private communications, like e-mails, instant messages, et al, no they should not be able to. But they probably are and would probably continue to even if someone judge somewhere told them not to.
People don't seem to remember that freedom comes with responsibility _and_ vulnerability.
August 1st, 2012, 10:00 PM #3
"Tell the Senate to vote NO on the Cyber Security Act of 2012. Now."
Can I borrow YOUR computer ?????
August 1st, 2012, 10:26 PM #4
August 1st, 2012, 10:37 PM #5
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I feel like they probably already have every phone line in the country, hard and cell, tapped and listened to by their big computers. I don't understand why people expect the internet to be different. Because, really, technologically, it's not.
August 1st, 2012, 10:39 PM #6
It also urges people to watch for anyone using “anonymizers, portals, or other means to shield IP address,” or who seems “overly concerned about privacy.”
Top Ten Myths About the Illegal NSA Spying on Americans | American Civil Liberties Union
Why you shouldn't trust the NSA.
Executive Order 12333 signed by President Reagan in 1981 (and amended a few times since1), largely prohibits the NSA from spying on domestic activities:
no foreign intelligence collection by such elements [of the Intelligence Community] may be undertaken for the purpose of acquiring information concerning the domestic activities of United States persons.
If amended, the Cybersecurity Act would allow the NSA to gain information related to "cybersecurity threat indicators," which would allow it to collect vast quantities of data that could include personally identifiable information of U.S. persons on American soil. Law enforcement and civilian agencies are tasked with investigating and overseeing domestic safety. The NSA, on the other hand, is an unaccountable military intelligence agency that is supposed to focus on foreign signals intelligence—and it’s frankly dangerous to expand the NSA’s access to information about domestic communications.
NSA has a dark history of violating Americans’ constitutional rights
In the 1960’s, a Congressional investigation, led by four-term Senator Frank Church, found that the NSA had engaged in widespread and warrantless spying on Americans citizens. Church was so stunned at what he found, he remarked that the National Security Agency’s "capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything." (emphasis added) The investigation led to the passage of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which provided stronger privacy protections for Americans’ communications—that is, until it was weakened by the USA-PATRIOT Act and other reactions to 9/11.
NSA has continued its warrantless wiretapping scandal
In 2005, the New York Times revealed that the NSA set up a massive warrantless wiretapping program shortly after 9/11, in violation of the Fourth Amendment and several federal laws. This was later confirmed by virtually every major media organization in the country. It led to Congressional investigations and several ongoing lawsuits, including EFF’s. Congress passed the FISA Amendments Act to grant telecom companies retroactive immunity for participating in illegal spying and severely weaken privacy safeguards for Americans communicating overseas.Since the FISA Amendments Act (FAA) passed, the NSA has continued collecting emails of Americans. A 2009 New York Times investigation described how a “significant and systemic” practice of "overcollection" of communications resulted in the NSA’s intercepting millions of purely domestic emails and phone calls between Americans. In addition, documents obtained via a Freedom of Information Act request by the ACLU, although heavily redacted, revealed "that violations [of the FAA and the Constitution] continued to occur on a regular basis through at least March 2010"— the last month anyone has public data for.
NSA recently admitted to violating the Constitution.
Just last week, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence—which oversees the NSA—begrudgingly acknowledged that "on at least one occasion" the secret FISA court "held that some collection… used by the government was unreasonable under the Fourth Amendment." Wired called it a "federal sidestep of a major section of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act," and it confirmed the many reports over the last few years: the NSA has violated the Constitution.
NSA keeps much of what it does classified and secret
Because cybersecurity policy is inescapably tied to our online civil liberties, it’s essential to maximize government transparency and accountability here. The NSA may be the worst government entity on this score. Much of the NSA's work is exempt from Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) disclosure because Congress generally shielded NSA activities from FOIA2. Even aside from specific exemption statutes, much information about NSA activities is classified on national security grounds. The NSA has also stonewalled organizations trying to bring public-interest issues to light by claiming the "state secrets" privilege in court. EFF has been involved in lawsuits challenging the NSA’s warrantless surveillance program since 2006. Despite years of litigation, the government continues to maintain that the "state secrets" privilege prevents any challenge from being heard. Transparency and accountability simply are not the NSA’s strong suit.They say technology slows down for no one. I know it outruns my wallet. I figure its because my wallet isn't light enough yet.
TechIMO Folding@home Team #111 - Crunching for the cure!
dulce bellum inexpertis
August 1st, 2012, 10:59 PM #7
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August 1st, 2012, 11:06 PM #8
August 2nd, 2012, 01:31 AM #9
Because of my past, they'll always keep an eye on me.
August 2nd, 2012, 06:48 AM #10
August 2nd, 2012, 10:54 AM #11
I doubt any computer system in the world could decode every phone call and evaluate the content of such communications. I know for a fact that I have not built a tap in my switch to port all voice calls to Law Enforcement Agencies (there is no secret wire leaving my cell phone company to the CIA) We currently only have a few dozen taps based upon warrants.
I think it is a monumental task to monitor all verbal communications at present so I seriously doubt the government. In the worst 1984 style invasion of privacy I could see them scanning for a few common watch phrases. But again there is no wire leaving my switch that provides said information. In fact it would be quite expensive for me to provide it to law enforcement because it would require more than a doubling of my external trunks just to send the information to them.
August 2nd, 2012, 10:57 AM #12
Epi, read Brandons link to room 641A.The timing of death, like the ending of a story, gives a changed meaning to what preceded it. -Mary Catherine Bateson-
August 2nd, 2012, 10:58 AM #13
It's not just the government, it's the accumulation of everything. If you look at an insurance company database, you have no secrets as to your public life. It's just all in one neat bundle. Every property insurance claim you have ever made with any company is in that database. You cannot escape it. Every home you owned and every apartment you ever rented is in there.
Yup. Auto insurance too. Rental cars, ditto.
And yes, your credit history... exactly what is that? Pull yours. It's free once a year. You really should look at it once in a while.
The add your medical records. It won't be long before they become "quasi public records" with Obamacare or the future in general. After all, everyone in medicine with a password and a terminal can view your records (some people can even change them...). You should have a RFID chip implant to at least make sure you are in the hospital...
Then we add the "other stuff"... the automated license plate readers, the credit card and debit card swipes, the parking garage autoscanners, etc.
The only reason we aren't at 100% yet, is the technology isn't quite there yet, but give it time.
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see that in the long run, this will all be combined "for your benefit". Besides, if you have nothing to hide, exactly "what's your problem, Buddy?"Obama: The rich have the Federal Reserve and the poor have Harry Reid... LOL. Life really is unfair!
August 2nd, 2012, 11:42 AM #14
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Everybody has a secret. Even Jesus didn't tell his disciples that he was God.In judging a two-person singing contest, never award the prize to the second soprano having heard only the first.
-- Francis Bator
August 2nd, 2012, 11:57 AM #15
to see an example of voice decoding just look at google voice state of the art. Google has some pretty serious access to resources and they still can't accuratly convert my voice to text. Were I to give the government 1000 times the resources for the same task it still would be a huge and unlikely undertaking.
Secondly more than 50% of the traffic borne on my cellular network is point to point. it never leaves our switch for AT&T to monitor. After that most of our calls are routed locally to land line carriers. The remaining long distance calls could be monitored by area 641.
August 2nd, 2012, 03:19 PM #16
August 2nd, 2012, 03:29 PM #17
The flaw in your arguments is that you assume many things. One assumption is that you have a full understanding of the monitoring capabilities of government intelligence agencies. You claim to know what is happening on your own cellular network. Have you personally audited and inspected all of the equipment and switches throughout the whole network, including every last inch of cable on the network? No? Then you have no idea what could be going on. You have no idea what "extras" are installed in the internal hardware of the network switching equipment at your cellular provider or ISP. The vectors for monitoring are innumerable!
August 2nd, 2012, 04:00 PM #18
We would notice a doubling of traffic leaving the switch. We are not talking about a non descript single fiber here to handle the millions of calls of voice traffic. It is up to our team to know what is on those facillities. Sorry Mobile to mobile traffic within a network is handled by 1 vocoder and then switched between switch modules and delivered to the other cell site. There is no room for magic mystery 1984 box in between. We buy additional trunking to handle capacity between our switch and the land line operators, to handle the capacity we need. Now the other cell phone companies and land line operators may port this stuff out but we do not.
My guess is that with the other cellular providers the same is true. My friends in the industry have never let the super duper secret out.
AT&T may have a black ops room run by the NSA as is indicated in the link but it by no means handles all calls.
You are right though, I don't know what magic signal processing resources the government has but I am gonna stick with my gut feeling that no one on earth currently has a voice decoder capable of decoding every voice conversation, dialect, speaking impedament, frequency, cadence and accent. Any eaves dropping the government does on voice I am gonna continue to believe is a much smaller subset than all people who make voice calls. You continue to believe in your buck rodgers tech but I don't see it as feasible or practicle today. And I know for a fact that Mobile to mobile calls at the very least are not ported to anyone.
I will also give you a little food for thought. If this was happening on a whosale scale don't you think there would be hundreds of switch engineers who would spill the beans. I mean we are not talking about highly paid illuminatti types.
August 2nd, 2012, 04:09 PM #19
@ brandon - you've got a idea of the capabilities.
Yes, I had a part of NSA duties when I was in. True, I was involved back in the mid-80's, but the capabilities have increased just as fast or faster than the technology.
August 2nd, 2012, 04:33 PM #20
Please do tell how the 10 million calls a day get out of my switch to the NSA with out wires? You may not know as much as you think you know.
The claim is that every one of the hundreds of millions of calls generated on land line and Cellular are ported off to a government computer and decoded is a conspiracy theorists wet dream but patently false. I have already explained that a tremendous number of them right off the bat do not get decoded because they are point to point. If I found it necessary to send all the mobile to mobile calls out our switch I would need tremendous resources that would not go un-noticed.
Currently the only mobile to mobile calls we sent out are to a fixed set of trunks based upon legal TAP requests.
I don't know what you think you know about the subject. I am quite sure that a government computer could decode most if not all dialects, languages cadences and all if not most mixtures of the above. They may even be able to do a suprisingly large quantity of them. But you really need to push the I believe button when you claim that they could process every voice conversation on a daily basis. Even if the hooks were in place to port the information to them. According to one source there are 2.4 billion voice calls daily. i will stick with my customers statistics of an average call duration of 110 call seconds. Assuming that everyone uses 8KBs vocoders that works out to be at least 2,100 terrabytes daily (not including any TCPIP overhead just data) if every call is as efficient as my system. 264 billion call seconds daily would need to be decoded.
I still contend that all monitoring is either done as random sampling and or targeted people. There is no program out there that will send the secret service to my house if I say I that I have a nuke in my pocket.
I could say that on the phone and detail my plans and no one would ever show up because there is no one listening. Because it is likely impossible to listen to all conversations and because I know for a fact that we do not send said information out of our switch except for specific targeted lines.
Last edited by Epidemic; August 2nd, 2012 at 05:03 PM.
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