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Patriot Act Leads To Spying On Phone Records, Internet Servers

We live in a surveillance society and practically nothing you do on the internet should be considered secure. The NSA is after the communications of “foreign” people (targeting anyone else is illegal) but they reach right into US-to-US communications to look for it. They call this “Special Source Operations,” the 9 major participants ranging from Microsoft (the first to sign on) to Apple (the last). According to the PowerPoint slideshow, 98% of the data collection came from Microsoft, Google, and Yahoo. Click on the slide image below to see more of the (still Top Secret) NSA PowerPoint file that has been leaked to the Guardian and the Washington Post.

Senators Wyden and Udall were right.

The court order appears to explain the numerous cryptic public warnings by two US senators, Ron Wyden and Mark Udall, about the scope of the Obama administration’s surveillance activities.

For roughly two years, the two Democrats have been stridently advising the public that the US government is relying on “secret legal interpretations” to claim surveillance powers so broad that the American public would be “stunned” to learn of the kind of domestic spying being conducted.

Because those activities are classified, the senators, both members of the Senate intelligence committee, have been prevented from specifying which domestic surveillance programs they find so alarming. But the information they have been able to disclose in their public warnings perfectly tracks both the specific law cited by the April 25 court order as well as the vast scope of record-gathering it authorized.

UPDATE: Clapper confirms the Patriot Act is cited to make mass collection of phone records legal. When will it be repealed?

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