October 17th, 2014 by Michael Sauers


This is from May but I’m a bit behind in some of my reading. However it is worth every moment you’ll spend reading it.

A great deal of confusion has been created by the distinction between data and metadata, as though there were a difference and spying on metadata were less serious.

Illegal interception of the content of a message breaks your secrecy. Illegal interception of the metadata of a message breaks your anonymity. It isn’t less, it’s just different. Most of the time it isn’t less, it’s more.

In particular, the anonymity of reading is broken by the collection of metadata. It wasn’t the content of the newspaper Douglass was reading that was the problem – it was that he, a slave, dared to read it.

The president can apologise to people for the cancellation of their health insurance policies, but he cannot merely apologise to the people for the cancellation of the constitution. When you are president of the United States, you cannot apologise for not being on Frederick Douglass’s side.

Read the full article @ The Guardian.

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August 13th, 2014 by Michael Sauers

Wired SnowdenJames Bamford interviews Edward Snowden for Wired magazine.

I confess to feeling some kinship with Snowden. Like him, I was assigned to a National Security Agency unit in Hawaii—in my case, as part of three years of active duty in the Navy during the Vietnam War. Then, as a reservist in law school, I blew the whistle on the NSA when I stumbled across a program that involved illegally eavesdropping on US citizens. I testified about the program in a closed hearing before the Church Committee, the congressional investigation that led to sweeping reforms of US intelligence abuses in the 1970s. Finally, after graduation, I decided to write the first book about the NSA. At several points I was threatened with prosecution under the Espionage Act, the same 1917 law under which Snowden is charged (in my case those threats had no basis and were never carried out). Since then I have written two more books about the NSA, as well as numerous magazine articles (including two previous cover stories about the NSA for WIRED), book reviews, op-eds, and documentaries.

Another concern for Snowden is what he calls NSA fatigue—the public becoming numb to disclosures of mass surveillance, just as it becomes inured to news of battle deaths during a war. “One death is a tragedy, and a million is a statistic,” he says, mordantly quoting Stalin. “Just as the violation of Angela Merkel’s rights is a massive scandal and the violation of 80 million Germans is a nonstory.”

Read the full story @ Wired.com.

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May 30th, 2014 by Michael Sauers

More @ NBCNews.com

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May 9th, 2014 by Michael Sauers

The Munk Debates: State Surveillance

Note: The debate starts at about 0:24:00. More detials @ http://www.munkdebates.com/debates/state-surveillance

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March 28th, 2014 by Michael Sauers

Published on Mar 18, 2014

Appearing by telepresence robot, Edward Snowden speaks at TED2014 about surveillance and Internet freedom. The right to data privacy, he suggests, is not a partisan issue, but requires a fundamental rethink of the role of the internet in our lives — and the laws that protect it. “Your rights matter,” he say, “because you never know when you’re going to need them.” Chris Anderson interviews, with special guest Tim Berners-Lee.

Published on Mar 20, 2014

After a surprise appearance by Edward Snowden at TED2014, Chris Anderson said: “If the NSA wants to respond, please do.” And yes, they did. Appearing by video, NSA deputy director Richard Ledgett answers Anderson’s questions about the balance between security and protecting privacy.

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March 17th, 2014 by Michael Sauers

Bill speaks with investigative reporter Julia Angwin, author of the new book ‘Dragnet Nation: A Quest for Privacy, Security and Freedom in a World of Relentless Surveillance,’ about the indiscriminate tracking of our everyday lives — where government and business are stockpiling data about us at an unprecedented pace.

Posted in Internet, Politics & Law Tagged with: , ,

January 31st, 2014 by Michael Sauers

01/26/2014: Edward Snowden chose Germany’s ARD to make his first television interview since he blew the whistle on NSA’s global dragnet and illegal surveillance. The 30-minute interview was made in strict secrecy in an unspecified location in Russia, where Snowden is currently living under temporary asylum.

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January 7th, 2014 by Michael Sauers

NSA/Verizon logoIn an alliance that stretches all the political clichés about “strange bedfellows,” librarians and civil libertarians are on the same side as gun activists and Internet giants Facebook and Google in backing bipartisan legislation in Congress that would roll back the federal government’s authority to snoop on Americans. In the past year, their agenda has taken on a global dimension with the revelations of fugitive NSA leaker Edward Snowden.

“When someone posts information to social media, they make the choice in the level of privacy they want to give to others,” said Clark, the Intellectual Committee Chair of the Minnesota Library Association.

“With mass collection of private data, whether library records or cellphone activity, the decision on privacy has been taken away from the individual. The potential harm comes from not knowing what has been collected or how it will be used,” she said.

Read the full article @ StarTribune.com.

Posted in Libraries, Politics & Law Tagged with: ,

January 3rd, 2014 by Michael Sauers

From Stellar Wind to PRISM, Boundless Informant to EvilOlive, the NSA spying programs are shrouded in secrecy and rubber-stamped by secret opinions from a court that meets in a faraday cage. The Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Kurt Opsahl explains the known facts about how the programs operate and the laws and regulations the U.S. government asserts allows the NSA to spy on you. (Published on Dec 30, 201)

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December 19th, 2013 by Michael Sauers

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