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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:06 pm 
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another perfect example of the HMS program to "kill the messenger" ... all I did was offer another perspective and you visciously and personally attack me Shay ... shame on you for your inability to respond without judgments ... and for blameing me for the opinions of others, that don't happen to agree with yours ... it's really old Shay - and it doesn't change the message, that Anon is a black ops because they are the only ones who stand to gain from a cyber war. the rest of us - the 99% will all be held accountable for their irresponsibility

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:28 pm 
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Anonymous - Message To Obama

http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&featu ... fcs2QBw2PQ


YAAAAAA!!!!!!!

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:32 pm 
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starduster wrote:
another perfect example of the HMS program to "kill the messenger" ... all I did was offer another perspective and you visciously and personally attack me Shay ... shame on you for your inability to respond without judgments ... and for blameing me for the opinions of others, that don't happen to agree with yours ... it's really old Shay - and it doesn't change the message, that Anon is a black ops because they are the only ones who stand to gain from a cyber war. the rest of us - the 99% will all be held accountable for their irresponsibility



VICTIM ALERT!!!!

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:33 pm 
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Shayalana wrote:
Anonymous - Message To Obama

http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&featu ... fcs2QBw2PQ


YAAAAAA!!!!!!!


How would anyone know if Anonymous is black ops? If it is than it only shows that what I said previously about starduster is correct. If it isn't it still shows that what i said about starduster is correct because of all the disinfo she naturally spews on this forum and has for some time now. Messenger? That's laughable. The question is for who?

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:47 pm 
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WHO STANDS TO GAIN .... not the 99% percent of us internet users who AREN'T HACKERS

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"...to know this information and then remain passive—a pure observer—is a programmed response, and that is not an answer to how do I best serve truth? It is a denial of truth.” 5th Interview


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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:56 pm 
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Feb. 27, 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

MASSIVE LEAK REVEALS CRIMINALITY, PARANOIA AMONG CORPORATE TITANS

Dow pays "strategic intelligence" firm to spy on Yes Men and grassroots activists. Takeaway: movement is on the right track!

WikiLeaks begins to publish today over five million e-mails obtained by Anonymous from "global intelligence" company Stratfor. The emails, which reveal everything from sinister spy tactics to an insider trading scheme with Goldman Sachs (see below), also include several discussions of the Yes Men and Bhopal activists. (Bhopal activists seek redress for the 1984 Dow Chemical/Union Carbide gas disaster in Bhopal, India, that led to thousands of deaths, injuries in more than half a million people, and lasting environmental damage.)

Many of the Bhopal-related emails, addressed from Stratfor to Dow and Union Carbide public relations directors, reveal concern that, in the lead-up to the 25th anniversary of the Bhopal disaster, the Bhopal issue might be expanded into an effective systemic critique of corporate rule, and speculate at length about why this hasn't yet happened—providing a fascinating window onto what at least some corporate types fear most from activists.

"[Bhopal activists] have made a slight nod toward expanded activity, but never followed through on it—the idea of 'other Bhopals' that were the fault of Dow or others," mused Joseph de Feo, who is listed in one online source as a "Briefer" for Stratfor.

"Maybe the Yes Men were the pinnacle. They made an argument in their way on their terms—that this is a corporate problem and a part of the a [sic] larger whole," wrote Kathleen Morson, Stratfor's Director of Policy Analysis.

"With less than a month to go [until the 25th anniversary], you'd think that the major players—especially Amnesty—would have branched out from Bhopal to make a broader set of issues. I don't see any evidence of it," wrote Bart Mongoven, Stratfor's Vice President, in November 2004. "If they can't manage to use the 25th anniversary to broaden the issue, they probably won't be able to."

Mongoven even speculates on coordination between various activist campaigns that had nothing to do with each other. "The Chevron campaign [in Ecuador] is remarkably similar [to the Dow campaign] in its unrealistic demand. Is it a follow up or an admission that the first thrust failed? Am I missing a node of activity or a major campaign that is to come? Has the Dow campaign been more successful than I think?" It's almost as if Mongoven assumes the two campaigns were directed from the same central activist headquarters.

Just as Wall Street has at times let slip their fear of the Occupy Wall Street movement, these leaks seem to show that corporate power is most afraid of whatever reveals "the larger whole" and "broader issues," i.e. whatever brings systemic criminal behavior to light. "Systemic critique could lead to policy changes that would challenge corporate power and profits in a really major way," noted Joseph Huff-Hannon, recently-promoted Director of Policy Analysis for the Yes Lab.

Among the millions of other leaked Stratfor emails are some that reveal dubious financial practices, including an apparent insider trading scheme with Goldman Sachs Managing Director Shea Morenz, who joined Stratfor's board of directors and invested "substantially" more than $4 million in the scheme, called StratCap. "What StratCap will do is use our Stratfor's intelligence and analysis to trade in a range of geopolitical instruments," wrote Stratfor CEO George Friedman in September 2011. StratCap was designed through a complex offshore share structure to appear legally independent, but Friedman assured Stratfor staff otherwise: "Do not think of StratCap as an outside organisation. It will be integral... It will be useful to you... We are already working on mock portfolios and trades." (StratCap has been due to launch in 2012, though that could now change.)

Other emails show Stratfor techniques of a truly creepy Spy vs. Spy sort: "[Y]ou have to take control of him. Control means financial, sexual or psychological control," wrote CEO Friedman recently to an employee, Reva Bhalla, on how to exploit an Israeli intelligence informant providing information on Chavez's cancer. (Stratfor's "confidential intelligence services" clients include, besides Dow and Union Carbide, the US Department of Homeland Security, the US Marines, the US Defense Intelligence Agency, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Raytheon.)

Perhaps most entertainingly of all, the email trove reveals that Stratfor's "Confederation Partners"—an unethical alliance between Stratfor and a number of mainstream journalists—are referred to informally within Stratfor as its "Confed [Censored] House." (Another discovery: Coca Cola was spying on PETA. More such gems are sure to surface as operatives sift through the 5.5 million emails.)

A number of the remaining Yes Men-related emails take the form of reports on public appearances by the Yes Men, such as one that describes one audience comprised of "art students on class assignments and free entertainment." Another notes that "The Yes Men tweeted about the US Chamber of Commerce 'plotting forged emails, documents to trick (AND smear) opponents,'" a reference to an apparent plot to discredit Chamber opponents using forged documents, as revealed when thousands of emails were recently leaked by Anonymous from cyber-security firm HB Gary. Yet another discusses Alessio Rastani, the Wall Street trader widely mistaken for Yes Man Andy Bichlbaum, who proclaimed, live on the BBC, that "governments don't rule the world, Goldman Sachs rules the world."

"Rastani was right," said the real Andy Bichlbaum five months later. "But it's now very clear that it doesn't have to be that way anymore."

The Yes Men and representatives from the Bhopal Medical Appeal will join Julian Assange of Wikileaks at a press conference at noon today, Feb. 27, at the Frontline Club in London. test

http://theyesmen.org/stratfor

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 11:11 pm 
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How big business subverts democracy

New leaks from Anonymous hackers show how far
corporate America will go to smear critics of the Chamber of
Commerce

Joseph Huff-Hannon and Andy Bichlbaum


The Yes Men Fix the World's Andy Bichlbaum on The Media's Role

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... dH7pNghEdk

Andy Bichlbaum (aka Jacques Servin) discusses the role of the media in the Yes Men project, regarding the hoax-driven documentary film The Yes Men Fix the World. Video: LinkTV/YouTube

" Defendants had a common plan to engage in acts … that deceived the press and public … These infringing and fraudulent acts are antithetical to public debate on important issues, because they prevent the public and the press from knowing the true position … In short, such conduct is destructive of public discourse, and cannot be tolerated under the law."

– Chamber of Commerce lawsuit against the Yes Men and "John and Jane Does 1 through 20", November 2009


Just a couple of years ago, most people had no idea what the Chamber of Commerce did. Aren't they mom and pop's small-business lobby in Washington? Now, thanks in large part to the work of Chamber opponents, we've come to learn that the biggest business lobby in the world is also one of the biggest impediments to real democracy in the US, and that they're a huge force in opposing healthcare reform, employee free choice and other labour legislation, veterans' rights, banking regulations and, of course, transparency.

The US Chamber of Commerce is the public face of a corporatism that is hijacking our democracy – and so dramatically limits any chances of meaningful reform. Even local chambers, fed up, have been leaving the US Chamber en masse. But what might it take for the "Facebook generation" in the US to topple, Tunisia- or Egypt-style, this arrogant and destructive force in American politics?

Late last week, another, still-unfolding leak story revealed the anti-democratic activities of private security firms, apparently hoping to sell their services to the US Chamber of Commerce as a means to silence its critics. Despite reports on the Centre for American Progress blog suggesting that contacts took place between representatives of the Chamber of Commerce where such proposals were made, the Chamber has denied all knowledge of them and has described such reports as a "smear campaign".

In 2009, the Chamber sued members of the Yes Men, an activist group that satirises powerful corporate foes, for posing as Chamber reps and announcing, to a room of reporters, that the Chamber was doing an about-face on their dangerous opposition to climate-change legislation. The media had a good laugh at the Chamber's expense (thanks in large part to a real Chamber representative who barged into the press conference in a rage), but the Chamber found the whole thing distinctly unfunny, and promptly filed suit. (Incidentally, the same law firm involved in the "Chamberleaks" affair, Hunton and Williams, is retained by the Chamber as its attorney in this suit against the Yes Men.)

Nutty indeed. But last week's spectacular series of leaks, counter-leaks and counter-counter-leaks revealed (and continues revealing) a disdain for free speech that shocked even us. It turns out that a consortium of private "cyber-security" firms were developing a $2m proposal to use a variety of sophisticated disinformation techniques to destroy the reputations of Chamber opponents, including public-interest, consumer-advocate and worker-rights groups such as US Chamber Watch and Change to Win. (The same firm was reportedly also proposing, in a presentation for Bank of America, a plot to destroy WikiLeaks, and to "neutralise" constitutional scholar Glenn Greenwald of Salon.com.) Like the Chamber of Commerce, Bank of America has denied knowledge of these plans.

More specifically, the firm proposed to (according to a leaked document) "create a false document, perhaps highlighting periodical financial information, and monitor to see if US Chamber Watch acquires it". To help make this happen, they'd "create a fake insider persona and generate communications" with Change to Win, a labour group the firm theorised might be allied to Chamber Watch. Maybe they'd even "create two fake insider personas, using one as leverage to discredit the other while confirming the legitimacy of the second". But it didn't stop there: the security firms proposed passing off the faked documents they'd created as the fabrication of Change to Win.

We wish we could credit these jokesters with some originality – especially given the fees they were planning to charge – but there's actually nothing new here. These dirty tricks are straight out of the playbook of COINTELPRO, the FBI's notorious 1960s programme of psychological warfare that, among other things, planted false reports and forged letters to destroy reputations. Lately, COINTELPRO tactics have been making a comeback on the right, inspiring a whole new generation of "dirty tricks" operators, along with their patrons in the rightwing media and their sponsors in Congress. But it isn't just "gross and offensive" kids (Andrew Breitbart's words) who are taking up old rightwing techniques. It's actually a very big business.

According to a security expert quoted in a recent New York Times article, "the 'competitive intelligence' industry had 9,700 companies offering these services, with an annual market of more than $2bn." What that industry does is (in the own words of one firm) to "discredit, confuse, shame, combat, infiltrate, fracture" opponents, whether those opponents are rival businesses or, as in this case, groups standing up for democracy, free speech and government transparency.

Why now? Dirty tricks aren't new, so why have they only now hit the corporate mainstream? Why might firms that specialise in such tactics consider that the most cashed-up big-business lobby in the world, with a daily budget nearing $400,000, might be a potential customer? After all, it has the funds at its disposal to enable it just to buy much of the media, not to mention a good chunk of Congress.

What this affair highlights is the crass, anti-democratic and increasingly desperate quality of our current version of corporate influence on politics. With the department of justice showing no signs of investigating, perhaps the Facebook generation in the US can learn a thing or two from the brave citizens in the Middle East.

Maybe we, too, have just been waiting for the right leak.



http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree ... s-internet

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 11:14 pm 
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starduster wrote:
WHO STANDS TO GAIN .... not the 99% percent of us internet users who AREN'T HACKERS



You have no idea how many hackers there are. What a hypocrit !!! The Government uses hackers all the time to spy on people for the most trivial things if not send them viruses and other devious things.Right where you live is one of the bigger gov hacking facilities and censorship agencies in the states and you know it. You're self righteousness being the act that it is , is so phony and unconvincing. :roll:

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 11:21 pm 
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The Yes Men Fix the US Chamber of Commerce

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D67LYEac ... re=related

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 11:59 pm 
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FSRN Wikileaks and Anonymous Unite to Expose Corporate Surveillance

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... mDh2Lbjt0#!




CNN Inside Anonymous - Rising of the Hacktivists

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M_dZfGF7 ... re=related

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:08 am 
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The Yes Men Fix The World

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... O00L4RyNw#!



Yes Men's Guide to High Level Pranking

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GhrpSW_p ... re=related

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 9:18 pm 
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Singapore's Precarious Surveillance State The Envy Of US Intelligence Agencies

from the total-information-awareness-test-market dept

If you want to build a surveillance state with a minimum of backlash, you'll need a very controllable environment. Shane Harris at Foreign Policy has a detailed report on Singapore's relatively peaceful coexistence with Big Brother that includes the United States' involvement in its creation, as well as the many reasons pervasive surveillance and an out-sized government presence have been accepted, rather than rebelled against.

The genesis of Singapore's surveillance net dates back to 2002, and traces all the way back to former US National Security Advisor, John Poindexter. Peter Ho, Singapore's Secretary of Defense, met with Poindexter and was introduced to the Dept. of Defense's Total Information Awareness (TIA) aspirations.

It would gather up all manner of electronic records -- emails, phone logs, Internet searches, airline reservations, hotel bookings, credit card transactions, medical reports -- and then, based on predetermined scenarios of possible terrorist plots, look for the digital "signatures" or footprints that would-be attackers might have left in the data space. The idea was to spot the bad guys in the planning stages and to alert law enforcement and intelligence officials to intervene.

Though initially presented as an anti-terrorism tool (something Singapore was looking for after several recent terrorist attacks), it first found usefulness as a way to track and predict the spread of communicable diseases.

Ho returned home inspired that Singapore could put a TIA-like system to good use. Four months later he got his chance, when an outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) swept through the country, killing 33, dramatically slowing the economy, and shaking the tiny island nation to its core. Using Poindexter's design, the government soon established the Risk Assessment and Horizon Scanning program (RAHS, pronounced "roz") inside a Defense Ministry agency responsible for preventing terrorist attacks and "nonconventional" strikes, such as those using chemical or biological weapons -- an effort to see how Singapore could avoid or better manage "future shocks."

Singapore politicians sold "big data" to citizens by playing up the role it would play in public safety. Meanwhile, back in the US, the program began to fall apart as privacy advocates and legislators expressed concerns about the amount of information being gathered. In Singapore, this was just the beginning of its surveillance state. In the US, it became an expansion of post-9/11 intelligence gathering. Rather than end the program, it was simply parted-out to the NSA and other agencies under new names by sympathetic lawmakers.

Singapore's TIA program soon swelled to include nearly anything the government felt it could get away with gathering. The government used the data to do far more than track potential terrorists. It used the massive amount of data to examine -- and plan for -- nearly every aspect of Singaporean existence.

Across Singapore's national ministries and departments today, armies of civil servants use scenario-based planning and big-data analysis from RAHS for a host of applications beyond fending off bombs and bugs. They use it to plan procurement cycles and budgets, make economic forecasts, inform immigration policy, study housing markets, and develop education plans for Singaporean schoolchildren -- and they are looking to analyze Facebook posts, Twitter messages, and other social media in an attempt to "gauge the nation's mood" about everything from government social programs to the potential for civil unrest.

Making this data collection even easier is the Singaporean government's demand that internet service can only be issued to citizens with government-issued IDs. SIM cards for phones can only be purchased with a valid passport. Thousands of cameras are installed and government law enforcement agencies actively prowl social media services to track (and punish) offensive material.

But this is accepted by Singapore citizens, for the most part. The mix of Indians, Chinese and Malays makes the government especially sensitive to racially-charged speech. The country's dependence on everyone around it makes everyday life a bit more unpredictable than that enjoyed by its much larger neighbors. In exchange for its tightly-honed national security aims (along with housing and education), Singaporeans have given up their freedom to live an unsurveilled life. And for the doubters, the government has this familiar rationale to offer.

"In Singapore, people generally feel that if you're not a criminal or an opponent of the government, you don't have anything to worry about," one senior government official told me.

What goes unmentioned is just how easy it is to become an "opponent" of the Singaporean state. It can take nothing more than appearing less than grateful for the many government programs offered in "exchange" for diminished civil liberties. While the government goes above and beyond to take care of its citizens' needs, it acts swiftly to punish or publicly shame those who are seen to spurn its advances, so to speak. Not for nothing did sci-fi writer William Gibson calls this Singapore "Disneyland with the Death Penalty."

So, to make the perfect police/security state, you need a small country and a mixture of government largesse and palpable threats. You need a nation so precariously balanced that it "shouldn't [even] exist," according to one top-ranking government official. You also need a nation not built on civil liberties. Despite this, US intelligence agencies still view Singapore as a prime example of what could have been.

[M]any current and former U.S. officials have come to see Singapore as a model for how they'd build an intelligence apparatus if privacy laws and a long tradition of civil liberties weren't standing in the way. After Poindexter left DARPA in 2003, he became a consultant to RAHS, and many American spooks have traveled to Singapore to study the program firsthand. They are drawn not just to Singapore's embrace of mass surveillance but also to the country's curious mix of democracy and authoritarianism, in which a paternalistic government ensures people's basic needs -- housing, education, security -- in return for almost reverential deference. It is a law-and-order society, and the definition of "order" is all-encompassing.

If this was what the NSA and others were pushing for, there's no hope of achieving it. The Snowden leaks have undermined a lot of these agencies' stealthy nudges in this direction. The US government can never hope to achieve the same level of deference, not even in the best of times. A melting pot that has folded in refugees from authoritarian nations -- along with the country's founding principles -- have made many Americans predisposed against views of the government as an entity worthy of reverence. Widespread abuse of the public's trust has further separated the government from any reverential thought.

This isn't to say the desire to convert US citizens into nothing more than steady streams of data doesn't exist. The NSA's previous director often stated his desire to "collect it all." In the hands of the government, useful things could be done with all of this data (like possibly heading off epidemics, etc.), but the more likely outcome would be collecting for collecting's sake -- which violates the civil liberties the country was built on -- and the use of the information in abusive ways.

It may work for Singapore, an extremely controlled environment. But that doesn't necessarily make it right. And it certainly shouldn't be viewed as some sort of surveillance state utopia.


https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20140 ... cies.shtml

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 9:35 pm 
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Newly Released Documents Show NSA Abused Its Discontinued Internet Metadata Program Just Like It Abused Everything Else

https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20140 ... else.shtml



Snowden Says He Purposely Left Clues For NSA To See What He Took; Shocked By NSA's Incompetence In Figuring It Out

from the nyah-nyah-nyah dept

Long time NSA watcher James Bamford spent a bunch of time with Ed Snowden in Moscow recently, leading to an absolutely fascinating story in Wired. There's lots of interesting stuff in there, but this seems particularly interesting. After noting how the US government -- over a year later -- is still scrambling to figure out exactly what Snowden took, he notes:

Snowden tells me it doesn't have to be like this. He says that he actually intended the government to have a good idea about what exactly he stole. Before he made off with the documents, he tried to leave a trail of digital bread crumbs so investigators could determine which documents he copied and took and which he just “touched.” That way, he hoped, the agency would see that his motive was whistle-blowing and not spying for a foreign government. It would also give the government time to prepare for leaks in the future, allowing it to change code words, revise operational plans, and take other steps to mitigate damage. But he believes the NSA's audit missed those clues and simply reported the total number of documents he touched—1.7 million. (Snowden says he actually took far fewer.) “I figured they would have a hard time,” he says. “I didn't figure they would be completely incapable.” ...

Wired article in the 1st paragraph- absolutely fascinating story in Wired.
http://www.wired.com/2014/08/edward-snowden

https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20140 ... -out.shtml

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 10:43 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 3:00 pm 
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Quote:
Wired article in the 1st paragraph- absolutely fascinating story in Wired.
http://www.wired.com/2014/08/edward-snowden


What I gathered from this article is that the American government DOES NOT HAVE THE CONTROL THEY WOULD LIKE US TO THINK THEY HAVE. Because they are so focused on creating fear and maintaining control and lying about it and covering their tracks so as not to be exposed, how much time do you think they have to truly create something new? Especially when they have grown so disportionately large with people of lower(?) rank that they cannot monitor completely(NSA)? They use a lot of media hype and other means, but especially media hype, to make most people think they have sweeping control over all of us when they don't. They also are very worried about people on the planet realizing this and seeing the depth of the corruption and depravity they have sunk into. When they make "examples" of a few people its because they know they cannot handle a large number of people all at once defying them. And that defiance can happen in many forms that are not direct like in protesting or being baited by them.This applies to Anu in the unseen as well, that group doesn't believe the heart has any power compared to their intellects, but they don't see that their predominant intellects are incapable of dealing with what they will not acknowledge let alone being bamboozled by. Let's get creative... from the Heart.

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 3:41 pm 
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Saying You Can't Compete With Free Is Saying You Can't Compete Period

from the a-little-explanation dept

Getting back to my series of posts on understanding economics when scarcity is removed from some goods, I wanted to address the ridiculousness of the "can't compete with free" statements that people love to throw out. If we break down the statement carefully, anyone who says that is really saying that they can't compete at all. The free part is actually meaningless -- but the zero is blinding everyone.

To explain this, it helps to go back to your basic economics class and recognize that, in a competitive market, the price of a good is always going to get pushed towards its marginal cost. That actually makes a lot of sense. As competition continues, it puts pressure on profits, but producers aren't willing (or can't for very long) keep selling goods at a direct loss. Sunk (or fixed) costs don't matter, because they've already been paid -- so everything gets pushed to marginal cost. That's pretty well accepted by most folks -- but it's still misinterpreted by many. They tend to look at it and say that if price equals marginal cost, then no one would ever produce anything. That's a misconception that is at the heart of this whole debate. The problem is that they don't add in the element of time, and the idea that what drives innovation is the constant efforts by the producers in the space to add fleeting competitive advantages (what some economists have annoyingly called "monopolistic competition," a name that I think is misleading). In other words, companies look to add some value to the goods that makes their goods better than the competition in some way -- and that unique value helps them command a profit. But, the nature of the competitive market is that it's always shifting, so that everyone needs to keep on innovating, or any innovation will be matched (and usually surpassed) by competitors. That's good for everyone. It keeps a market dynamic and growing and helps out everyone.

So, let's go back to the "can't compete with free" statement. Anyone who says that is effectively saying that they can't figure out a way to add value that will make someone buy something above marginal cost -- but it's no different if the good is free or at a cost. Let's take a simple example. Say I own a factory that cost me $100 million to build (fixed cost) and it produces cars that each cost $20,000 to build (marginal cost). If the market is perfectly competitive, then eventually I'm going to be forced to sell those cars at $20,000 -- leaving no profit. Now, let's look at a different situation. Let's say that I want to make a movie. It costs me $100 million to make the movie (fixed cost) and copies of that movie each cost me $0 (marginal cost -- assuming digital distribution and that bandwidth and computing power are also fixed costs). Now, again, if the market is competitive and I'm forced to price at marginal cost, then the scenario is identical to the automobile factory. My net outlay is $100 million. My profit is zero. Every new item I make brings back in cash exactly what it costs to make the copy -- so the net result is the same. It's no different that the good is priced at $0 or $20,000 -- so long as the market is competitive.

So why aren't the same people who insist that you can't compete with free whining about any other competitive market situation? Because they know that, left unfettered, the market adjusts. The makers of automobiles keep trying to adjust and differentiate their cars through real and perceived benefits (such as brand) -- and that lets them add value in a way that they can make money and not have to worry about having products priced at marginal cost. If a company can't do that, it goes out of business -- and most people consider that a good thing. If you can't compete, you should go out of business. But, when it comes to goods with a $0 marginal cost, even though the net result is identical to goods with a higher marginal cost, suddenly people think that you can't compete? The $0 price makes no difference. All that matters is the difference in price you can charge to the marginal cost. Everyone else learns to differentiate -- why can't those who produce infinite goods do the same?

The answer is that they already do -- even if they don't realize it. Why do movies still cost more than $0? Because there's additional value bundled with the movie itself. People don't buy "a movie." They buy the experience of going to the theater. People like to go out to the movies. They like the experience. Or people buy the convenience of a DVD (which is another feature bundled with the movie). They like to buy DVDs (or rent them) in order to get the more convenient delivery mechanism and the extra features that come with DVDs. In other words, they like the differentiated value they can get from bundled goods and services that helps justify a price that's more than $0. Just as people are willing to pay more than the marginal cost (in some cases a lot more) to get that car they want, they're willing to pay more for a bundled good or service with content -- if only the makers of that content would realize it.

So the next time someone says "you can't compete with free" ask them why? Every company that's in business today competes with those who aim to undercut the price of their product -- and the situation is absolutely no different when it's free. It's just that people get blinded by the zero and forget that the absolute price is meaningless compared to the marginal cost.

" understanding economics when scarcity is removed." ~ https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20061025/014811.shtml

"zero is blinding everyone." ~ https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20061026/102329.shtml



https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20070 ... riod.shtml

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 3:59 pm 
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Economics Of Abundance Getting Some Well Deserved Attention

from the about-time dept

It's great to see Chris Anderson getting lots of attention for his recent talk on "the economics of abundance," because it's exactly the type of thing that a lot of people have been discussing for a while -- but still hasn't permeated the mainstream. In fact, it's quite similar to the talk I gave at the Cato Institute back in April in discussing why certain people seemed to have so much trouble grasping the economics of the digital age. Basically, it's the problem that occurs when people focus too hard on the idea that economics is the study of resource allocation in the presence of scarcity. That only makes sense when there's scarcity -- and in digital goods, scarcity doesn't exist.

Dave Hornik has a wonderful post about Anderson's talk while Ross Mayfield is also discussing how he's come to realize that the economics of scarcity doesn't apply digitally. Now, if we stuck with the focus on "scarcity," then I should be upset that these two are basically repeating the "idea" I discussed back in April. Those who keep harping on the importance of "property" and love to say that you can "steal" content might even say that this idea was "stolen." That, obviously, is ridiculous. These are basic ideas that we have all realized is fundamental and a truth of economics. And, it's hardly a new idea (which is why my one quibble with Anderson's own post is his decision to call the idea of the economics of abundance a "radical attack"). Mayfield talks about those who helped him realize it, from Jerry Michalski to Howard Rheingold. In the comments to that post, Julian Bond brings up the ideas of Buckminster Fuller and and Alan Cooper. In my case, the inspiration came from many different people, including the teachings of Alan McAdams (my old mentor and professor) and the writings of Brian Arthur (who focused on "increasing marginal returns" rather than diminishing ones) and even back to Thomas Jefferson, who famously said:

If nature has made any one thing less susceptible than all others of exclusive property, it is the action of the thinking power called an idea, which an individual may exclusively possess as long as he keeps it to himself; but the moment it is divulged, it forces itself into the possession of every one, and the receiver cannot dispossess himself of it. Its peculiar character, too, is that no one possesses the less, because every other possesses the whole of it. He who receives an idea from me, receives instruction himself without lessening mine; as he who lights his taper at mine, receives light without darkening me.

That ideas should freely spread from one to another over the globe, for the moral and mutual instruction of man, and improvement of his condition, seems to have been peculiarly and benevolently designed by nature, when she made them, like fire, expansible over all space, without lessening their density in any point, and like the air in which we breathe, move, and have our physical being, incapable of confinement or exclusive appropriation. Inventions then cannot, in nature, be a subject of property.


So, no, it's not a new idea at all -- and yet, many people still don't seem to want to understand it. They don't believe that the free market can function with a lack of scarcity. It's understandable why that could make some uncomfortable -- but, it's a fundamental misunderstanding based on this desire to force scarcity where there is none, just so economics can continue to be the study of scarcity. It's this inability to get rid of that scarcity thinking that's holding back a number of developments these days, and the more people who realize this and the more people talking about this, the better. And it is fitting with the theory of abundance. The more abundant this discussion is, the more likely people will grasp it. And, it's especially exciting that someone like Chris Anderson is pitching it, because of his ability to take complex economic ideas and make them easy to understand, while getting people to listen. Hopefully, this is just the beginning of a widespread discussion about this topic.

https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20061026/102329.shtml

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 4:24 pm 
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Infinity Is Your Friend In Economics

from the use-it-wisely dept

Continuing our ongoing series looking at economics when scarcity is removed from markets, I wanted to go back to the early discussion on the importance of understanding zero in making sense of markets where scarcity is removed. That post discussed how many who believe economics requires scarcity do so because they believe economic equations break down when a zero is put into them. That is, they see a zero in the "marginal cost = price" statement and they say that the system must be broken, because you can't have a market when the price is zero. However, that's wrong. Zero works just fine, but you have to understand why.

The key actually isn't in zero, but zero's flip side: infinity. Just like many early societies had tremendous difficulty in coming to understand the concept of zero, the concept of infinity was incredibly difficult to grasp. Just as with zero, certain aspects of mathematics and physics stalled out without an understanding of infinity -- and it would be a shame if the same happens for economics. However, just as with zero, many who look at the economics get scared off by infinity and assume it must break otherwise proven concepts. Throw an infinity into the supply of a good and the supply/demand curve is going to toss out a price of zero (sounds familiar, right?). Again, the first assumption is to assume the system is broken and to look for ways to artificially limit supply.

However, the mistake here is to look at the market in a manner that is way too simplified. Markets aren't just dynamic things that constantly change, but they also impact other markets. Any good that is a component of another good may be a finished good for the seller, but for the buyer it's a resource that has a cost. The more costly that resource is, the more expensive it is to make that other good. The impact flows throughout the economy. If the inputs get cheaper, that makes the finished goods cheaper, which open up more opportunities for greater economic development. That means that even if you have an infinite good in one market, not all the markets it touches on are also infinite. However, the infinite good suddenly becomes a really useful and cheap resource in all those other markets.

So the trick to embracing infinite goods isn't in limiting the infinite nature of them, but in rethinking how you view them. Instead of looking at them as goods to sell, look at them as inputs into something else. In other words, rather than thinking of them as a product the market is pressuring you to price at $0, recognize they're an infinite resource that is available for you to use freely in other products and markets. When looked at that way, the infinite nature of the goods is no longer a problem, but a tremendous resource to be exploited. It almost becomes difficult to believe that people would actively try to limit an infinitely exploitable resource, but they do so because they don't understand infinity and don't look at the good as a resource.

https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20070 ... mics.shtml

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 8:58 pm 
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Through a PRISM, Darkly - Everything we know about NSA spying [30c3]

Published on Dec 30, 2013

Through a PRISM, Darkly
Everything we know about NSA spying

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.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a non-profit civil society organization, has been litigating against the NSA spying program for the better part of a decade. EFF has collected and reviewed dozens of documents, from the original NY Times stories in 2005 and the first AT&T whistleblower in 2006, through the latest documents released in the Guardian or obtained through EFF's Freedom of Information (government transparency) litigation. EFF attorney Kurt Opsahl's lecture will describe how the NSA spying program works, the underlying technologies, the targeting procedures (how they decide who to focus on), the minimization procedures (how they decide which information to discard), and help you makes sense of the many code names and acronyms in the news. He will also discuss the legal and policy ramifications that have become part of the public debate following the recent disclosures, and what you can do about it. After summarizing the programs, technologies, and legal/policy framework in the lecture, the audience can ask questions.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BMwPe2KqYn4

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 10:18 pm 
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JACOB APPELBAUM EXPOSES NSA TOOLS HACKING YOUR COMPUTER-BACK DOORS & MALWARE

NSA AGENTS who specialize in SECRET BACK DOORS FOR SPYING ON YOU are able to keep an eye on all levels of our digital lives. THE NSA ILLEGAL GOVT HACKERS SPY ON computing centers to individual computers, and from laptops to mobile phones. UNLOCKING ANY AND ALL PHONES AND COMPUTERS AND LABTOPS. FOR EVERY SECURED COMPUTER OR NETWORK the ANT seems to have a key in its toolbox TO OPEN AND GAIN INSTANT ACCESS TO EVERYONE. And no matter what walls companies erect, the NSA's specialists seem already to have gotten past them.
THE NSA 50-page CATAOLOG HAS A list that reads like a mail-order catalog. ALL NSA employees can order technologies from the ANT division for tapping their targets' data. The catalog even lists the prices for these electronic break-in tools, with costs ranging from free to $250,000. In the case of Juniper, the name of this particular digital lock pick is "FEEDTROUGH." This NSA MALWARE burrows into Juniper firewalls and makes it possible to smuggle other NSA programs into mainframe computers. Thanks to FEEDTROUGH, these implants can, by design, even survive "across reboots and software upgrades." In this way, US GOVERNMENT SPIES can SECURE and PLANT themselves a permanent presence in ANY computer networks. The catalog states that FEEDTROUGH "has been deployed on many target platforms."
NSA SPECIALISTS at ANT which stands for Advanced or Access Network Technology, ARE GOVT EMPLOYED MASTER HACKERS for the NSA's department for Tailored Access Operations (TAO). In cases where TAO's usual hacking and data-skimming methods don't suffice, ANT workers step in with their special tools, penetrating networking equipment, monitoring mobile phones and computers and diverting or even modifying data. Such "IMPLANTS," as they are referred to in NSA parlance, have played a considerable role in the intelligence agency's ability to establish a global covert network that operates alongside the Internet.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dy3-QZLTpbQ

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 11:30 pm 
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Laura Poitras - Surveillance Teach-In - Full Lecture

In this Surveillance Teach-In, award-winning filmmaker Laura Poitras is joined by computer security expert and privacy advocate Jacob Appelbaum and National Security Agency whistle-blower Bill Binney to present an artistic and practical commentary on living in the contemporary Panopticon.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZ5ilIMeRlQ

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 2:55 am 
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Whistleblower Award - Jacob Appelbaum answers for Edward Snowden

Whistleblower Award 2013 - Ceremony awarding Edward J. Snowden

Jacob Appelbaum, Internet activist and journalist answers for Edward Snowden

Edward Snowden receives the Whistleblower Award. For the first time Transparency International Deutschland e.V. contributes to the award, which is given every two years by the Vereinigung Deutscher Wissenschaftler (VDW e.V.) and der German Section of the International Association Of Lawyers Against Nuclear Arms (IALANA e.V.). With the award persons are honored, who reveal malpractices and dangerous developments for humans and society, democracy, peace, and the environment. Due to the courageous actions of Edward J. Snowden the world has gained insights into the surveillance and espionage practices of intelligence agencies. Every single one of us can be affected by them at any time and without there being any grounds for suspicion. The pressing problems associated with whistleblowing are analyzed in a festive dedication to the honorable Edward Snowden. The focus of the lecture by Prof. Dr. Foschepoth is the latitude of the secret services in Germany. Through this ceremony, the awarding organizations wished to strengthen their demand to the German government to offer US citizen Snowden, in gratitude and all sincerity, accommodation and protection in Germany.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cW8lRCqYI6U

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 3:08 am 
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The Tor Network (with Jacob Applebaum)

The Tor Network
We're living in interesting times

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MhJ4sjyj13Q

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 4:55 pm 
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The Surveillance Engine: How the NSA Built Its Own Secret Google

The National Security Agency is secretly providing data to nearly two dozen U.S. government agencies with a “Google-like” search engine built to share more than 850 billion records about phone calls, emails, cellphone locations, and internet chats, according to classified documents obtained by The Intercept.

The documents provide the first definitive evidence that the NSA has for years made massive amounts of surveillance data directly accessible to domestic law enforcement agencies. Planning documents for ICREACH, as the search engine is called, cite the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Drug Enforcement Administration as key participants.

ICREACH contains information on the private communications of foreigners and, it appears, millions of records on American citizens who have not been accused of any wrongdoing. Details about its existence are contained in the archive of materials provided to The Intercept by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Earlier revelations sourced to the Snowden documents have exposed a multitude of NSA programs for collecting large volumes of communications. The NSA has acknowledged that it shares some of its collected data with domestic agencies like the FBI, but details about the method and scope of its sharing have remained shrouded in secrecy.

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ICREACH has been accessible to more than 1,000 analysts at 23 U.S. government agencies that perform intelligence work, according to a 2010 memo. A planning document from 2007 lists the DEA, FBI, Central Intelligence Agency, and the Defense Intelligence Agency as core members. Information shared through ICREACH can be used to track people’s movements, map out their networks of associates, help predict future actions, and potentially reveal religious affiliations or political beliefs.

The creation of ICREACH represented a landmark moment in the history of classified U.S. government surveillance, according to the NSA documents.

“The ICREACH team delivered the first-ever wholesale sharing of communications metadata within the U.S. Intelligence Community,” noted a top-secret memo dated December 2007. “This team began over two years ago with a basic concept compelled by the IC’s increasing need for communications metadata and NSA’s ability to collect, process and store vast amounts of communications metadata related to worldwide intelligence targets.”

The search tool was designed to be the largest system for internally sharing secret surveillance records in the United States, capable of handling two to five billion new records every day, including more than 30 different kinds of metadata on emails, phone calls, faxes, internet chats, and text messages, as well as location information collected from cellphones. Metadata reveals information about a communication—such as the “to” and “from” parts of an email, and the time and date it was sent, or the phone numbers someone called and when they called—but not the content of the message or audio of the call.

ICREACH does not appear to have a direct relationship to the large NSA database, previously reported by The Guardian, that stores information on millions of ordinary Americans’ phone calls under Section 215 of the Patriot Act. Unlike the 215 database, which is accessible to a small number of NSA employees and can be searched only in terrorism-related investigations, ICREACH grants access to a vast pool of data that can be mined by analysts from across the intelligence community for “foreign intelligence”—a vague term that is far broader than counterterrorism.

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Data available through ICREACH appears to be primarily derived from surveillance of foreigners’ communications, and planning documents show that it draws on a variety of different sources of data maintained by the NSA. Though one 2010 internal paper clearly calls it “the ICREACH database,” a U.S. official familiar with the system disputed that, telling The Intercept that while “it enables the sharing of certain foreign intelligence metadata,” ICREACH is “not a repository [and] does not store events or records.” Instead, it appears to provide analysts with the ability to perform a one-stop search of information from a wide variety of separate databases.

In a statement to The Intercept, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence confirmed that the system shares data that is swept up by programs authorized under Executive Order 12333, a controversial Reagan-era presidential directive that underpins several NSA bulk surveillance operations that monitor communications overseas. The 12333 surveillance takes place with no court oversight and has received minimal Congressional scrutiny because it is targeted at foreign, not domestic, communication networks. But the broad scale of 12333 surveillance means that some Americans’ communications get caught in the dragnet as they transit international cables or satellites—and documents contained in the Snowden archive indicate that ICREACH taps into some of that data.

Legal experts told The Intercept they were shocked to learn about the scale of the ICREACH system and are concerned that law enforcement authorities might use it for domestic investigations that are not related to terrorism.

“To me, this is extremely troublesome,” said Elizabeth Goitein, co-director of the Liberty and National Security Program at the New York University School of Law’s Brennan Center for Justice. “The myth that metadata is just a bunch of numbers and is not as revealing as actual communications content was exploded long ago—this is a trove of incredibly sensitive information.”

Brian Owsley, a federal magistrate judge between 2005 and 2013, said he was alarmed that traditional law enforcement agencies such as the FBI and the DEA were among those with access to the NSA’s surveillance troves.

“This is not something that I think the government should be doing,” said Owsley, an assistant professor of law at Indiana Tech Law School. “Perhaps if information is useful in a specific case, they can get judicial authority to provide it to another agency. But there shouldn’t be this buddy-buddy system back-and-forth.”

Jeffrey Anchukaitis, an ODNI spokesman, declined to comment on a series of questions from The Intercept about the size and scope of ICREACH, but said that sharing information had become “a pillar of the post-9/11 intelligence community” as part of an effort to prevent valuable intelligence from being “stove-piped in any single office or agency.”

Using ICREACH to query the surveillance data, “analysts can develop vital intelligence leads without requiring access to raw intelligence collected by other IC [Intelligence Community] agencies,” Anchukaitis said. “In the case of NSA, access to raw signals intelligence is strictly limited to those with the training and authority to handle it appropriately. The highest priority of the intelligence community is to work within the constraints of law to collect, analyze and understand information related to potential threats to our national security.”

much more...

https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014 ... ss-proton/

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 Post subject: Re: INTERNET FREEDOM FREEDOM PERIOD.
PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 5:35 pm 
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One-Stop Shopping

The mastermind behind ICREACH was recently retired NSA director Gen. Keith Alexander, who outlined his vision for the system in a classified 2006 letter to the then-Director of National Intelligence John Negroponte. The search tool, Alexander wrote, would “allow unprecedented volumes of communications metadata to be shared and analyzed,” opening up a “vast, rich source of information” for other agencies to exploit. By late 2007 the NSA reported to its employees that the system had gone live as a pilot program.

The NSA described ICREACH as a “one-stop shopping tool” for analyzing communications. The system would enable at least a 12-fold increase in the volume of metadata being shared between intelligence community agencies, the documents stated. Using ICREACH, the NSA planned to boost the amount of communications “events” it shared with other U.S. government agencies from 50 billion to more than 850 billion, bolstering an older top-secret data sharing system named CRISSCROSS/PROTON, which was launched in the 1990s and managed by the CIA.

To allow government agents to sift through the masses of records on ICREACH, engineers designed a simple “Google-like” search interface. This enabled analysts to run searches against particular “selectors” associated with a person of interest—such as an email address or phone number—and receive a page of results displaying, for instance, a list of phone calls made and received by a suspect over a month-long period. The documents suggest these results can be used reveal the “social network” of the person of interest—in other words, those that they communicate with, such as friends, family, and other associates.

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The purpose of ICREACH, projected initially to cost between $2.5 million and $4.5 million per year, was to allow government agents to comb through the NSA’s metadata troves to identify new leads for investigations, to predict potential future threats against the U.S., and to keep tabs on what the NSA calls “worldwide intelligence targets.”

However, the documents make clear that it is not only data about foreigners’ communications that are available on the system. Alexander’s memo states that “many millions of…minimized communications metadata records” would be available through ICREACH, a reference to the process of “minimization,” whereby identifying information—such as part of a phone number or email address—is removed so it is not visible to the analyst. NSA documents define minimization as “specific procedures to minimize the acquisition and retention [of] information concerning unconsenting U.S. persons”—making it a near certainty that ICREACH gives analysts access to millions of records about Americans. The “minimized” information can still be retained under NSA rules for up to five years and “unmasked” at any point during that period if it is ever deemed necessary for an investigation.

The Brennan Center’s Goitein said it appeared that with ICREACH, the government “drove a truck” through loopholes that allowed it to circumvent restrictions on retaining data about Americans. This raises a variety of legal and constitutional issues, according to Goitein, particularly if the data can be easily searched on a large scale by agencies like the FBI and DEA for their domestic investigations.

“The idea with minimization is that the government is basically supposed to pretend this information doesn’t exist, unless it falls under certain narrow categories,” Goitein said. “But functionally speaking, what we’re seeing here is that minimization means, ‘we’ll hold on to the data as long as we want to, and if we see anything that interests us then we can use it.’”

A key question, according to several experts consulted by The Intercept, is whether the FBI, DEA or other domestic agencies have used their access to ICREACH to secretly trigger investigations of Americans through a controversial process known as “parallel construction.”

Parallel construction involves law enforcement agents using information gleaned from covert surveillance, but later covering up their use of that data by creating a new evidence trail that excludes it. This hides the true origin of the investigation from defense lawyers and, on occasion, prosecutors and judges—which means the legality of the evidence that triggered the investigation cannot be challenged in court.

In practice, this could mean that a DEA agent identifies an individual he believes is involved in drug trafficking in the United States on the basis of information stored on ICREACH. The agent begins an investigation but pretends, in his records of the investigation, that the original tip did not come from the secret trove. Last year, Reuters first reported details of parallel construction based on NSA data, linking the practice to a unit known as the Special Operations Division, which Reuters said distributes tips from NSA intercepts and a DEA database known as DICE.

Tampa attorney James Felman, chair of the American Bar Association’s criminal justice section, told The Intercept that parallel construction is a “tremendously problematic” tactic because law enforcement agencies “must be honest with courts about where they are getting their information.” The ICREACH revelations, he said, “raise the question of whether parallel construction is present in more cases than we had thought. And if that’s true, it is deeply disturbing and disappointing.”

Anchukaitis, the ODNI spokesman, declined to say whether ICREACH has been used to aid domestic investigations, and he would not name all of the agencies with access to the data. “Access to information-sharing tools is restricted to users conducting foreign intelligence analysis who have the appropriate training to handle the data,” he said.

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https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014 ... ss-proton/

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