NSA Surveillance Whistleblower: The Government Is Destroying Our Privacy

NSA Surveillance Whistleblower The Government Is Destroying Our PrivacyA 29-year-old computer technician for a U.S. defense contractor leaked details of a top-secret American program that collects vast streams of phone and Internet data, American and British newspapers revealed Sunday.

‘Massive surveillance machine’

“My sole motive is to inform the public as to that which is done in their name and that which is done against them,” the source, Edward Snowden, told Britain’s the Guardian, one of the papers that broke stories on the program last week.

Snowden is a former technical assistant for the CIA and has been working at the National Security Agency, the U.S. electronic intelligence service, for the past four years, the newspaper reported. He said he walked away from a six-figure job in Hawaii for the computer consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton and has holed up in a hotel in Hong Kong in preparation for the expected fallout from his disclosures.

“I’m willing to sacrifice all of that because I can’t in good conscience allow the U.S. government to destroy privacy, Internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they’re secretly building,” he said.


‘Existential threat to democracy’

The Guardian reported Wednesday that Verizon Business Network Services had been ordered to hand over telephone records detailing the time, location and telephone numbers involved in domestic calls from April 25 to July 19. An order from a U.S. court that oversees U.S. surveillance efforts backed up the demand, the newspaper reported.

Thursday, the Guardian and the Post disclosed the existence of PRISM, a program they said allows NSA analysts to extract the details of customer activities — including “audio and video chats, photographs, e-mails, documents” and other materials — from computers at Microsoft, Google, Apple and other Internet firms. Snowden said the NSA’s reach poses “an existential threat to democracy.”

Do you think the government is indeed stepping on the privacy of the people? Or is the PRISM just a necessary move to secure the nation’s safety?

Source: Matt Smith, CNN

Image: Politico

Gadhafi’s Son Attempts Escape to Mexico

Saadi Gadhafi, a son of the deposed Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi, secretly tried to travel to Mexico using false documents, Mexico’s interior minister said Wednesday. Four people have been implicated in the alleged plot — a Canadian, a Dane and a two Mexicans, said the minister, Alejandro Poire. The arrests of the alleged plotters, which occurred last month, were announced Wednesday. Officials called their efforts “Operation House Guest.”

The plan was to provide false documents claiming Mexican nationality for Saadi Gadhafi and his family, and to purchase a number of properties in Mexico for use as safe houses, Poire said. One of the houses was in Bahia de Banderas, a tourist town in western Mexico’s Nayarit state, he said.

Mexican intelligence detected the alleged plot on September 6, he said. Intelligence agents followed the trail and discovered that Cynthia Ann Vanier, a Canadian who was in direct contact with the Gadhafi family, was the leader of the ring, Poire said. Vanier was arrested on November 10.

The suspects face charges that include falsifying documents and opening bank accounts under false identities. According to Poire, the Gadhafis would have entered the country under the following aliases: Daniel Bejar Hanan, Amira Sayed Nader, Moah Bejar Sayed and Sofia Bejar Sayed.

Saadi Gadhafi’s lawyer, Nick Kaufman, said he spoke with his client Wednesday.

“There is absolutely no truth whatsoever to the allegation that, since fleeing Libya where his life was in grave danger, Saadi Gaddafi has attempted to flout the restrictive measures placed on him by the international community,” Kaufman said.

The alleged plot, however, would have been hatched while Saadi Gadhafi was still in Libya, before he fled to Niger.

 

Source: CNN.com

Image: Dailycaller.com