US Taps Undersea Cables
Why should anyone trust Obama with this power.
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Recent debate over U.S. government surveillance has focused on the information that American technology companies secretly provide to the National Security Agency. But that is only one of the ways the NSA eavesdrops on international communications.
A classified NSA slide obtained by The Washington Post lists “Two Types of Collection.”
One is PRISM, the NSA program that collects information from technology companies, which was first revealed in reports by the Post and Britain’s Guardian newspaper last month. The slide also shows a separate category labeled “Upstream,” described as accessing “communications on fiber cables and infrastructure as data flows past.”
The interaction between Upstream and PRISM — which could be considered “downstream” collection because the data are already processed by tech companies — is not entirely clear from the slide. In addition, its description of PRISM as “collection directly from the servers” of technology giants such as Google, Microsoft and Facebook has been disputed by many of the companies involved. (They say access to user data is legal and limited.)