Saturday, May 18, 2013

Surveillance, DOJ, FBI, NSA, FISA, FISC, PRISM, FAA702, XKS, SOD, DICE, Timeline, "Turn-key Tyranny"

Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act takes effect.

USA Patriot Act amends Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

Dropmire is "implanted on the Cryptofax at the EU embassy, DC" - a commercially available encrypted fax machine used at the mission. The machine is used to send cables back to foreign affairs ministries in European capitals.

NSA report: The quantity of communications accessible through programs such as XKeyscore is staggeringly large, estimating that there were 850bn "call events" collected and stored in the NSA databases, and close to 150bn Internet records. Each day, the document says, 1-2bn records were added.

Protect America Act signed into law.

PRISM data collection begins for Microsoft servers.

NSA documents assert that 300 terrorists have been captured using intelligence from XKeyscore.

PRISM data collection begins for Yahoo servers.

FISA Amendment Act.

Federal judges authorize 386 wiretaps for the year 2008.

PRISM data collection begins for Google servers.

Analysts enter a phone number into agency computers and “put one digit wrong,” mining a large volume of information about Americans with no connection to terror. The matter is reported to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.  The Justice Department represents NSA before this secret court. The judges are "really upset about this" and require that all the data be destroyed.  Attorney General Eric Holder pledges to the judges that the intelligence agencies would take correct the problem as condition of renewing the NSA’s surveillance program.

The Justice Department publicly confirms to the New York Times that Holder has taken “comprehensive steps” to correct a problem in NSA collection after it “detected issues that raised concerns.” But department officials decline to discuss details about what was described at the time as the “over-collection” of information.

PRISM data collection begins for Facebook servers.

Documents signed by Attorney General Eric Holder and submitted to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court shows that US communications can still be collected, retained and used. They detail procedures the NSA is required to follow and circumstances in which data collected on US persons must be destroyed, and reveals how US call records are used to help remove US citizens and residents from data collection.
However, alongside those provisions, the Fisa court-approved policies allow the NSA to:
-Keep data that could potentially contain details of US persons for up to five years.
-Retain and make use of "inadvertently acquired" domestic communications if they contain usable intelligence, information on criminal activity, threat of harm to people or property, are encrypted, or are believed to contain any information relevant to cybersecurity.
-Preserve "foreign intelligence information" contained within attorney-client communications.
-Access the content of communications gathered from "U.S. based machine[s]" or phone numbers in order to establish if targets are located in the US, for the purposes of ceasing further surveillance.

Google CEO Schmidt in CNBC interview:  If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place.
But if you really need that kind of privacy, the reality is that search engines, including Google, do retain this information for some time. 
We're all subject, in the US, to the Patriot Act, and it is possible that that information could be made available to the authorities.

PRISM data collection begins for PalTalk servers.

Federal judges authorize 663 wiretaps for the year 2009.

Annual report to Congress, the Justice Department reports 21 applications in 2009 for business records to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) under Section 215 – all of which were granted, though nine were modified by the court. (The reports do not explain how or why the orders were modified.)

A top secret 2010 guide describing the training received by NSA analysts for general XKeyscore surveillance under the Fisa Amendments Act of 2008, explains that analysts can begin surveillance on anyone by clicking a few simple pull-down menus designed to provide both legal and targeting justifications. Once options on the pull-down menus are selected, their target is marked for electronic surveillance and the analyst is able to review the content of their communications.

Dropmire document lists embassy and mission targets. 
In addition to Dropmire other spying methods, from bugs implanted in electronic communications gear to taps into cables to the collection of transmissions with specialized antennae, are used.
List of 38 targets: traditional ideological adversaries, sensitive Middle Eastern countries, EU missions, the French, Italian and Greek embassies, Japan, Mexico, South Korea, India and Turkey.
Operation against French mission to UN is codenamed "Blackfoot", its embassy in DC "Wabash".
Operation against Italian embassy in DC is known to NSA as both "Bruneau" and "Hemlock".
Operation against Greek UN mission is known as "Powell", against its embassy is "Klondyke".

PRISM data collection begins for YouTube servers.

Federal judges authorize 1,207 wiretaps for the year 2010.

NSA's PRISM data collection begins for Skype servers under program code name Project Chess.

FBI Director Mueller during Senate Judiciary Oversight Committee hearing testifying about intelligence failures that contributed to 2009 Fort Hood massacre: “We put in place technological improvements relating to the capabilities of a database to pull together past emails and future ones as they come in so that it does not require an individualized search.” 

PRISM data collection begins for AOL servers.

Annual report to Congress, the Justice Department reports the number of requests to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) under Section 215 jumps from 21 in 2009 to 205 in 2010 (all again granted, with 176 modified.)

FBI Director Mueller, written responses to Congress: “Beginning in late 2009, certain electronic communications service providers no longer honored NSLs to obtain” records because their lawyers cited “ambiguity” in the law.  As a result the FBI switched over to demanding the same data under Section 215. “This change accounts for a significant increase in the volume of business records requests,” Mueller writes.

Obama administration files court order to amend DNI/AG 702(g) to allow surveillance of domestic targets...

Obama administration files court letter disclosing for the first time that NSA's "upstream collection" of Internet communications include acquisition of entire transactions.

Obama administration files motion seeking to extend the 30-day periods in which the Court must complete review of certifications.

Congress reauthorizes the FISA provision of the Patriot Act, with the Senate voting 72-23 in favor, and the House approving the measure by a 250-153 count.

PATRIOT Sunsets Extension Act signed into law.

Obama administration files motion seeking additional 60-day extension of periods in which the Court must complete reviews of DNI/AG 702(g) Certifications.  Court grants motion.

Parents of Navy SEAL killed on 8/7/2011 who publicly criticized President Obama complain to Verizon about hearing clicking sounds during phone conversations and receiving text messages of 001 and 002.
Verizon explains that third parties are accessing their calls from inside US and Afghanistan.

FISA Court grants Obama administration further extension of deadlines for completeion of reviews of certifications.

The [surveillance] Court authorizes the NSA to conduct warrantless searches of individual Americans’ communications using an authority intended to target only foreigners.

Obama White House launches the Insider Threat Program to combat government leaks.

Mosques are now off-limits to FBI agents. No more surveillance or undercover string operations without high-level approval from a special oversight body at the Justice Department dubbed the Sensitive Operations Review Committee.

A classified FISA 86-page court opinion is issued stating that the Justice Department engaged in surveillance activity that the court had found improper or unconstitutional.

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) solicits Deloitte Consulting to gather, store, and share US consumers credit card data.

Federal judges authorize 792 wiretaps for the year 2011.

In 2012, there were at least 41 billion total records collected and stored in XKeyscore for a single 30-day period.

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) solicits Argus Information & Advisory Services LLC to gather, store, and share US consumers credit card data.

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) awards $2.9 M contract to Argus Information & Advisory Services LLC to gather, store, and share US consumers credit card data.

Department of Homeland Security issues a statement: “No indication of any specific, credible threats or plots against the US tied to the one-year anniversary of Bin Laden’s death.”

Internal NSA audit reports 2,776 violations of surveillance laws between 4/2011 and 3/2012.

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) awards $4,951,333 contract to Deloitte Consulting to gather, store, and share US consumers credit card data.

Defense Department strategy memo on the Insider Threat Program: Leaking is tantamount to aiding the enemies of the United States.

A U.S. intelligence official acknowledges in a letter to Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon that “on at least one occasion” the national security court found that “some collection” by the intelligence community “was unreasonable under the Fourth Amendment” to the U.S. Constitution.

Director Mueller learns of FBI investigation into Patraeus - Broadwell affair.

CFPB document entitled “INDEFINITE-DELIVERY INDEFINITY-QUANTITY (IDIQ) STATEMENT OF WORK,”  issued by CFPB Contracting Officer Xiaoling Ang states objective: “The CFPB seeks to acquire and maintain a nationally representative panel of credit information on consumers for use in a wide range of policy research projects… The panel shall be a random sample of consumer credit files obtains from a national database of credit files.”

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) solicits Experian to track daily consumer habits of select individuals without their awareness or consent.

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) signs an “indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity” contract with Experian worth up to $8,426,650 to track daily consumer habits of select individuals without their awareness or consent.

PRISM data collection begins for Apple servers.

FISA Amendment Act of 2008 renewed.

Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act (FAA) is renewed for five years and is the authority under which the NSA is allowed to collect large-scale data, including foreign communications and also communications between the US and other countries, provided the target is overseas.

A slide entitled "plug-ins" in a NSA document describes the various fields of information that can be searched by XKeyscore. It includes "every email address seen in a session by both username and domain", "every phone number seen in a session (eg address book entries or signature block)" and user activity – "the webmail and chat activity to include username, buddylist, machine specific cookies etc".

For the year 2012, federal judges authorized 1,354 wiretaps, an increase of 71% from 2011. 
1,328 of the wiretaps were for portable devices.

Edward Snowden requests that filmmaker Laura Poitras get an encryption key for Skype so that they could have a secure channel over which to communicate. Poitras is a member of the Board of the Freedom of the Press Foundation which helps fund WikiLeaks.

Top secret memo: NSA’s acquisitions directorate sends millions of records every day from Yahoo and Google internal networks to data warehouses at the agency’s Fort Meade headquarters. In the preceding 30 days, the report said, field collectors had processed and sent back 181,280,466 new records — ranging from “metadata,” which would indicate who sent or received e-mails and when, to content such as text, audio and video.

Edward Snowden requests that UK Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald get an encryption key for Skype so that they could have a secure channel over which to communicate providing him with a step-by-step video on how to set up encrypted communications.  Greenwald is a member of the Board of the Freedom of the Press Foundation

Representative Maxine Waters: "The President has put in place an organization with the kind of database that no one has ever seen before in life. That's going to be very, very powerful.  That database will have information about everything on every individual on ways that it's never been done before and whoever runs for President on the Democratic ticket has to deal with that. They're going to go down with that database and the concerns of those people because they can't get around it. And he's [President Obama] been very smart. It's very powerful what he's leaving in place."

President Obama signs executive order Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity, establishing a two-year timeline during which the federal government will determine what constitutes critical “physical or virtual” infrastructure, and establish security standards to keep those assets safe.
Development of the standards — called “Cybersecurity Framework” —  will be led by director of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).
“The Cybersecurity Framework shall include a set of standards, methodologies, procedures, and processes that align policy, business, and technological approaches to address cyber risks.”

NSA's data mining tool used to map information, called Boundless Informant, collects almost 3 billion pieces of intelligence from US computer networks over a 30-day period ending in March 2013.

Edward Snowden applies for job with Booz Allen Hamilton at NSA facility in Hawaii.

DNI Clapper receives all questions that he will be asked under oath at tomorrow's Senate hearing.

Director of National Intelligence Clapper and other intelligence officials testify about threats to US.
Senator Wyden: "Does the NSA collect any kind of data at all on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans?"
Clapper: "No, sir."
Wyden: "It does not?"
Clapper: "Not wittingly. There are cases where they could, inadvertently, perhaps..."

There are 117,675 active surveillance targets in PRISM's counterterrorism database.

Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) passes the House. 
Directs the federal government to conduct cybersecurity activities to provide shared situational awareness enabling integrated operational actions to protect, prevent, mitigate, respond to, and recover from cyber incidents.
Directs the President, with respect to information shared by a cybersecurity provider... to designate:
(1) an entity within Department of Homeland Security (DHS) as the civilian federal entity to receive cyber threat information under prescribed procedures and subject to specified exceptions, and
(2) an entity within the Department of Justice (DOJ) as the civilian federal entity to receive information related to cybersecurity crimes.

The secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA) grants renewal of court order to the FBI forcing Verizon to provide phone record data of all customers on a daily basis for three months.

Letter from Assistant Attorney General Peter Kadzik to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid reports that the government submitted to the court 1,789 applications requesting authority to carry out electronic snooping in 2012.

Annual report to Congress, DOJ reports filing 212 requests to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) under Section 215 in 2012.
FBI's number of national security letters (NSLs) issued by the bureau in 2012 was 15,229.

POTUS commencement address at OSU: "Unfortunately, you've grown up hearing voices that incessantly warn of government as nothing more than some separate, sinister entity that's at the root of all our problems. Some of these same voices also do their best to gum up the works. They'll warn that tyranny always lurking just around the corner. You should reject these voices."

Edward Snowden makes final preparations at NSA office in Hawaii, he copies the last set of documents he intends to disclose.

Obama defends criminal investigation into leaks: Leaks related to national security can put people at risk.  So I make no apologies.

Edward Snowden notifies his Booz Allen supervisor that he needs a two week leave of absence for epilepsy treatment then boards a flight from Hawaii to Hong Kong.

President Barack Obama on Thursday asked Holder to review Justice’s guidelines on leak investigations and news organizations.

Edward Snowden emails Washington Post using code name Verax. 

Attorney General Eric Holder misses deadline set by Republican Congress to explain questionable testimony he gave on reporter surveillance, as lawmakers threaten to subpoena Holder if necessary.

IRS solicitation for surveillance equipment:
The Internal Revenue Service intends to award a Purchase Order to an undisclosed Corporation. The following descriptions are vague due to the use and nature of the items...
The following equipment will be purchased:
(QTY 4) Plant Concealment Color 700 Lines Color IP Camera Concealment with Single Channel Network Server, supports dual video stream, Poe, software included, case included, router included
(QTY 4) Covert Coffee tray with Camera concealment
(QTY 4) Remote surveillance system, Built-in DVD Burner and 2 Internal HDDs, cameras
(QTY 2) Concealed clock radio
(QTY 4) Color IP Camera Concealment with single channel network server...

DOJ announces it will investigate the NSA/Verizon leak that ended up in the UK Guardian.

Washington Post and UK Guardian break PRISM story after receiving 41-slide PowerPoint presentation from leaker.

Report: Analysts at the National Security Agency can now secretly access real-time user data provided by as many as 50 American companies, ranging from credit rating agencies to Internet service providers, two government officials familiar with the arrangements said.

Google, Facebook, Dropbox, Yahoo, Microsoft, Paltalk, AOL and Apple deny participation in NSA PRISM surveillance program

Google CEO Page: "First, we have not joined any program that would give the U.S. government—or any other government—direct access to our servers. Indeed, the U.S. government does not have direct access or a “back door” to the information stored in our data centers. We had not heard of a program called PRISM until yesterday."

Zuckerberg: "Facebook is not and has never been part of any program to give the US or any other government direct access to our servers. We have never received a blanket request or court order from any government agency asking for information or metadata in bulk, like the one Verizon reportedly received. And if we did, we would fight it aggressively. We hadn't even heard of PRISM before yesterday."

Apple spokesman: We have never heard of PRISM. We do not provide any government agency with direct access to our servers, and any government agency requesting customer data must get a court order.”

Paltalk statement: We have not heard of PRISM. Paltalk exercises extreme care to protect and secure users’ data, only responding to court orders as required to by law. Paltalk does not provide any government agency with direct access to its servers.”

President Obama falsely claims that "every member of Congress has been briefed on this program [PRISM]."

US Assistant District Attorney cancels meeting with lawyer of Dem operative Curtis Morrison, admitted bugger of Senator McConnell's campaign office.

UK Guardian publishes new slide from leaked PowerPoint presentation:
PRISM is distinct from four other Upstream programs (FAIRVIEW, BLARNEY, two others redacted) that involve the "Collection of communications on fiber cables and infrastructure as data flows past."  PRISM is the "Collection directly from the servers of these US Service Providers: Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, Skype, YouTube, Apple."

Administration opens criminal investigation into security breach leaking of classified documents related to the tracking of Americans' phone calls and emails, "a criminal report has been filed.”
FBI and DOJ will focus on British and US newspapers including The Guardian.
It remains unclear whether the secretive National Security Agency is involved in the filing.

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper tells NBC News that the phone-records program has helped foil two terrorism plots in 2009: a New York subway bombing scheme and a plot against a Danish news publisher.

UK Guardian 15 minute video from Hong Kong luxury hotel room identifies PRISM leaker Edward Snowden, a 29-year-old employee of defense contractor Booz Allen Hamilton. Snowden has worked at the National Security Agency for last four years as an employee of Booze Allen Hamilton.  Snowden warns against 'Turn-key Tyranny.'

Report: Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) has declined just 11 of the more than 33,900 surveillance requests made by the government in 33 years.

Class action lawsuit filed in Washington DC against DOJ and NSA by Freedom Watch over Verizon data collection.

Report: 1.3 million people have top-secret US security clearance - 800,000 government officials and 500,000 non-government private contractors.

Former senior NSA official claims that only 30 or 40 people have access to FISA Court orders.

Booz Allen Hamilton fires Edward Snowden.

House of Representatives receives a classified briefing by the NSA and FBI on PRISM.

IRS cancels order for the spying equipment solicited on 6/6/2013.

ACLU files lawsuit against Obama Administration over PRISM..

White House: Celebrating the Opening of a New High Performance Computing Center.
OSTP’s Associate Director for National Security and International Affairs Dr. Patricia Falcone provided keynote remarks yesterday at a ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrating the opening of the US Army Research Laboratory’s (ARL) new supercomputing center at Aberdeen Proving Ground in northern Maryland.
The new ARL Supercomputing Center—containing two new IBM iDataPlex computers with the capacity to perform 50,000 trillion floating point operations per second, or 50 petaflops—will provide state-of-the art high performance computing capabilities as well as extraordinary capacities in advanced high-speed networking and data analysis, providing unprecedented benefits to the Army, the Department of Defense, and the Nation as a whole.

Former DOJ prosecutor Larry Klayman files a class action lawsuit against the 9 US companies that participated in PRISM.

Parents of Navy SEAL killed on 8/7/2011 who are outspoken critics of President Obama join Freedom Watch lawsuit citing Verizon's 2011 admission that their phone was being tapped.

Report: Surveillance Program Excludes Mosques, Missed Boston Bombers

ABC News Rick Klein: McConnell's confessed bugger still not charged; DOJ not talking.

NSA director, General Keith Alexander testifies that maintaining a database of Americans' phone records was critical to thwarting "dozens" of plots.

Senators Udall and Wyden say they want proof that surveillance programs have disrupted plots against US.

Bloomberg News: Thousands of technology, finance and manufacturing companies are working closely with U.S. national security agencies, providing sensitive information and in return receiving benefits that include access to classified intelligence, four people familiar with the process said.

NSA admits listening to U.S. phone calls without warrants, disclosing in secret Capitol Hill briefing that thousands of analysts can listen to domestic phone calls. That authorization appears to extend to e-mail and text messages too.

Facebook statement: Between 9,000 and 10,000 requests from all government entities, from local to federal, in the last six months of 2012.  The orders involved the accounts of between 18,000 and 19,000 Facebook users on a broad range of surveillance topics, from missing children to terrorism.

Microsoft statement:  Between 6,000 and 7,000 government orders, affecting between 31,000 and 32,000 accounts were requested in last six months of 2012.

A government paper is unclassified by intelligence agencies and Obama administration:
Surveillance data collection is legal, controlled and does not intrude on privacy.
Collection of "metadata" is raw information that does not identify individual telephone subscribers.
Of phone records collected in 2012, authorities looked at records of fewer than 300 phone numbers.

Apple Statement: "From December 1, 2012 to May 31, 2013, Apple received between 4,000 and 5,000 requests from US law enforcement for customer data."

Yahoo statement: From 12/1/2012 to 5/31/2013 "we received between 12,000 and 13,000 requests, inclusive of criminal, Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), and other requests."

Journalist Michael Hastings contacts WikiLeaks lawyer Jennifer Robinson saying that the FBI is investigating him.  He is working on the NSA surveillance story.

Hastings emails associates: The feds are interviewing my 'close friends and associates.' Perhaps if the authorities arrive at BuzzFeed HQ, may be wise to immediately request legal counsel before any conversations or interviews about our news-gathering practices or related journalism issues.
Also: I'm onto a big story, and need to go off the radar for a bit.

NSA Director Gen. Alexander testifies before House Select Intelligence Committee that government’s sweeping surveillance programs have disrupted more than 50 terrorist plots in US and abroad.

The FBI is investigating whether the highly protected and segregated computer systems that store the secret court warrants authorizing electronic surveillance inside the United States have been breached.

33 year old Journalist Michael Hastings dies in a fiery one car automobile accident.
Hastings was covering Edward Snowden's leak of the NSA's classified domestic monitoring program.

FBI Director admits domestic use of drones during Senate Judiciary Committee oversight hearing.
Sen. Chuck Grassley: “Does the FBI use drones for surveillance on US soil?”  
Director Mueller: “Yes, very seldom.”

Law enforcement sources tell CBS News' Bob Orr that the FBI has used small model airplane-sized drones on 10 or 12 occasions for very localized surveillance.

US charges Snowden with espionage.
The complaint, which initially was sealed, is filed in the Eastern District of Virginia

President Obama meets with privacy watchdog panel will behind the closed doors of the White House Situation Room.
It’s the president’s first sit-down with the little-known Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, created nearly a decade ago but dormant for the entirety of the Obama presidency.

DNI Clapper letter to Senate Intelligence Committee apologizes for lying during Senate testimony about US surveillance.

US requests Hong Kong to extradite Snowden.

Hong Kong rejects US extradition request because it did not "fully comply with the legal requirements under Hong Kong law."

Snowden leaves Hong Kong... Whereabouts and destination unknown.  He is travelling with Sarah Harrison.

Sarah Harrison is a UK citizen, journalist, and legal researcher who is currently working with the WikiLeaks Legal Defense team led by former Spanish Judge Baltasar Garzon.

NBC's David Gregory and Chuck Todd raise the issue of UK Guardian's journalist Glenn Greenwald criminally aiding and abetting Snowden.

Russia ignores US demand to expel Snowden.

Russia's foreign minister bluntly rejects U.S. demands to extradite NSA leaker Snowden, saying that Snowden hasn't crossed the Russian border.

Putin: Snowden is in Moscow airport transit zone, he has not crossed the border and Russia will not extradite him.

Report: Snowden has given encoded files containing an archive of the secrets he lifted from his old employer to several people. If anything happens to Snowden, the files will be unlocked.

Army spokesman: US Army is blocking all access to The Guardian newspaper's reports about the NSA's sweeping collection of data about Americans' email and phone communications

Records obtained pursuant to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA): Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) reveals that the agency has spent millions of dollars for the warrantless collection and analysis of Americans’ financial transactions. The documents also reveal that CFPB contractors may be required to share the information with “additional government entities.”

Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Damien Pickart: Department of Defense is blocking online access to news reports about classified NSA documents made public by Snowden. The blackout affects all of the department's computers and is part of a department-wide directive.

Four new PRISM slides published showing: 
NSA analyst "tasks" PRISM for information about a new surveillance target.
Request to add a new target is passed to supervisor.
Supervisor reviews the "selectors," or search terms.
Supervisor must endorse analyst's "reasonable belief," defined as 51 percent confidence, that target is a foreign national who is overseas at the time of collection.
Data is acquired, processed and analyzed by specialized systems that handle voice, text, video and "digital network information" that includes the locations and unique device signatures of targets.

German Justice Minister responds to a report by Der Spiegel, which claims that the NSA eavesdropped on EU offices in Washington, New York and Brussels. The magazine cites 2010 classified documents from Edward Snowden that outlines how the US had placed devices in the two EU embassies and gained access to their internal computer networks.

Offices of Dallas law firm Schulman & Mathias representing a high-profile State Department whistleblower Aurelia Fedenisn, a former investigator at State Department’s Office of the Inspector General are broken into. Burglars stole three computers and broke into the firm’s file cabinets.
In recent weeks, Fedenisn raised a slew of explosive allegations against the department and its contractors ranging from illicit drug use, soliciting sexual favors from minors and prostitutes and sexual harassment.

Report: As part of the Insider Threat Program, an unprecedented government-wide crackdown aimed at rooting out future leakers and other security violators, President Obama has ordered federal employees to report suspicious actions of their colleagues based on behavioral profiling techniques that are not scientifically proven to work, according to experts and government documents.
The techniques, an initiative under which millions of federal bureaucrats and contractors must watch out for “high-risk persons or behaviors” among co-workers, are a key pillar of the Insider Threat Program. Those who fail to report them could face penalties, including criminal charges.

AP:   President Barack Obama selected a panel of advisers he described 8/9/13 as independent experts to scrutinize the NSA's surveillance programs to be sure they weren't violating civil liberties and to restore Americans' trust.
But with just weeks remaining before its first deadline to report back to the White House, the review panel has effectively been operating as an arm of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, which oversees the NSA and all other U.S. spy efforts.
Even the panel's official name suggests it's run by Clapper's office: "Director of National Intelligence Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technologies."
Four of the five review panel members previously worked for Democratic administrations: Peter Swire, Michael Morell, Richard Clarke, and Cass Sunstein. A fifth panel member, Geoffrey Stone of the University of Chicago, leads a university committee looking to build Obama's presidential library in Chicago and was an informal adviser to Obama's 2008 presidential campaign.
Stone wrote in a July op-ed that the NSA surveillance program that collects the phone records of every American every day is constitutional.

Washington Post:  The National Security Agency is harvesting hundreds of millions of contact lists from personal e-mail and instant messaging accounts around the world, many of them belonging to Americans...

Google spokeswoman: “We’re troubled by allegations of the government intercepting traffic between our data centers, and we are not aware of this activity. However, we have long been concerned about the possibility of this kind of snooping, which is why we continue to extend encryption across more and more Google services and links.”

In 2007, police arrested a MA man who appeared to be selling crack cocaine, seized and opened his cellphone to find a number that led to the man’s home, where police found drugs and guns.
On appeal he argued that accessing the information on his cellphone without a warrant violated his Fourth Amendment rights. Earlier this year, the First Circuit Court of Appeals accepted the man’s argument, ruling that the police should have gotten a warrant before accessing the man’s phone.
Obama Administration files a petition filed asking the Supreme Court to hear the case, arguing that the First Circuit’s ruling conflicts with other rulings supporting the police's broad discretion to search possessions on an arrested suspect, including notebooks, calendars and pagers. The government contends that a cellphone is no different than any other object a suspect might be carrying.

Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper declassifies three documents that showed there have been “a number of technical compliance problems” with the government’s phone-snooping program, as the Obama administration fights to preserve what it says is a critical tool in the war on terror. The documents lay out the administration’s legal backing of the National Security Agency snooping program, and give some broad details of the operation. One of the documents is a secret court order authorizing the NSA program.

Reuters report: A secretive Special Operations Division of the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) funnels information from intelligence intercepts, overseas NSA intercepts, domestic wiretaps, informants and a massive database of telephone records to authorities nationwide to help them launch criminal investigations of Americans. The DEA phone database is distinct from a NSA database disclosed by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

Lavabit, a secure email service, is shutting down do to US government pressure and is forbidden by law to say why.
I have been forced to make a difficult decision: to become complicit in crimes against the American people or walk away from nearly ten years of hard work by shutting down Lavabit. After significant soul searching, I have decided to suspend operations. I wish that I could legally share with you the events that led to my decision. I cannot. I feel you deserve to know what’s going on--the first amendment is supposed to guarantee me the freedom to speak out in situations like this. Unfortunately, Congress has passed laws that say otherwise. As things currently stand, I cannot share my experiences over the last six weeks, even though I have twice made the appropriate requests.
What’s going to happen now? We’ve already started preparing the paperwork needed to continue to fight for the Constitution in the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals. A favorable decision would allow me resurrect Lavabit as an American company.
This experience has taught me one very important lesson: without congressional action or a strong judicial precedent, I would _strongly_ recommend against anyone trusting their private data to a company with physical ties to the United States.

Silent Circle, a secure email service, is shutting down do to US government pressure and is forbidden by law to say why. 
We designed our phone, video, and text services (Silent Phone and Silent Text) to be completely end-to-end secure with all cryptography done on the clients and our exposure to your data to be nil...
We see the writing the wall, and we have decided that it is best for us to shut down Silent Mail now. We have not received subpoenas, warrants, security letters, or anything else by any government, and this is why we are acting now.

Pamela Jones is shutting down her legal web site Groklaw: "There is now no shield from forced exposure," from government scrutiny.

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper authorized the release three secret U.S. court opinions showing how the National Security Agency scooped up as many as 56,000 emails and other communications with no connection to terrorism annually over three years starting in 2011.


Index of NSA surveillance terms