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View Diary: Glenn Greenwald's Old Game (210 comments)

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  •  BTW (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mk3872, Red Bean, eltee, DeadHead, deep info

    This is not a denial or "walkback"

    The Guardian understands that the NSA approached those companies and asked them to enable a “dropbox” system whereby legally requested data could be copied from their own server out to an NSA-owned system. That has allowed the companies to deny that there is “direct or indirect” NSA access, to deny that there is a “back door” to their systems, and that they only comply with “legal” requests – while not explaining the scope of that access.
    The funny thing is none of you "techie" geniuses apparently believe Clapper.
    •  re-qualifying "direct access" to dropbox (4+ / 0-)

      is not a walk back?  You are cute as a fucking button sometimes.

      Talk to your IT Staff Armando.

      Hey btw... I have "direct access" to Microsoft too then.  shhh... don't tell anyone though.

      Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

      by Wisper on Thu Jun 13, 2013 at 07:03:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not every techie is stupid about this (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NYFM, Armando, Wisper, deep info

      And journalists are often hilariously non-technical for reasons that only God knows. To them a server is a server, whether it's a CT server or a FTP server.

      For techies familiar with telephony, the story has long legs. Phone companies routinely spit out data to their corporate customers...it's part of what companies pay for when they contract with a carrier for their PBXs. Sometimes it gets ftp'd or ssh'd or sent via DVD/CD. Similiarly, PBXs have built-in mechanisms to spit out call data, usually to some sort of text file. The last thing you want or need is to have anyone having direct access to the database that sits behind all this. With telephony, everything is about speed. A typical time-out in the programming world might be 10 or 30 seconds. In the telephony world, a latency over 3 ms is considered too long. Direct access to the system would cause latency and it would just be stupid because the data would have changed 10 times in the time you took just to get to it.

      So..very few folks anywhere have DIRECT access to the systems that generate this call data because it's not practical. However, these systems spit out data on a regular basis (every second, or minute, or hour, depending on traffic and/or settings) and that practice is an industry standard.

      Ultimately, though, it doesn't matter whether Greenwald thinks an FTP server is part of Verizon's system or not. A so-called "techie" dissing the whole story because he thinks Greenwald doesn't know what a server is is irony at best and deliberate misdirection at worst.

      •  That's interesting (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        deep info

        Obviously I can't speak to what you write as I admit to having no knowledge in the field.

        For the reasons I have stated, I did not think it an important part of this story.

        But if what you write is correct, then it does point to misdirection or lack of knowledge on the point by the techs criticizing Greenwald.

      •  Two things (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Tony Situ, NYFM

        1.  Why would anyone want direct access to the senseless raw switch data?  I think it's safe to say its definitely the database, most likely Oracle on systems this large, that has all the call metadata and transaction logs.  So the Dropbox server is still limited to packaged metadata which is what we've known the government has been monitoring since 2002.  

        2.  There is one MAJOR point here though.  That output file, however many fields it contains, is NOT in anyway the same as the pearl-clutching outrage machine is carelessly speculating as "the EBIL gubmint has access to listen in to all our calls!!!1!!"  THAT'S what many IT people have been consistently saying is nonsense.  

        Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

        by Wisper on Thu Jun 13, 2013 at 09:13:28 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  call meta data says a lot (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          deep info, NYFM

          When it is matched up to all these other sources like facebook and gmail it says even more. The only way to make good matches is to sweep up everyone's data from all these sources. Where is the matched but innocent (ie non-terrorist) being kept? Who has access to it....now? Or after the next election?

          You are also assuming that it IS just a dropbox of metadata. Yet there have been quotes about using the metadata to fetch recordings in the past. How are those recordings being made? For and by whom?

          Google call recording software for call centers. The technology is mind blowing. They can record calls via the cloud and then analyze those records to determine a speaker's emotions.

          Too much over reach and too much risk of data misuse.

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