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View Diary: The US is Not Going to Win the War on Edward Snowden (310 comments)

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  •  I think the most concerning thing (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    schumann, JVolvo, Helpless

    of the info Snowden released is that Snowden could have access to any of this info...

    He isn't some "highly trained career government employee" like we've all been assured are the only ones involved with these spying programs...

    He's a 29 year old high school, and college dropout that worked for some private company for THREE FREAKING MONTHS!!!

    Three months and he was able to gain access to some INCREDIBLY sensitive information... That he then leaked!

    If these programs are sooooo important for our National Security it just seems to me like, oh I don't know... There were a little more "security" involved with who was going to be involved in the running of the damned programs, doesn't it???

    That is the big deal to me, that this is all obviously carried out in a halfassed way.

    Any Joe Schmoe working for whichever private contractor can have access into every American's private info, with little to no oversight at all.

    That shouldn't be.

    "It is through disobedience that progress has been made, through disobedience and through rebellion." Oscar Wilde, 1891

    by MichiganGirl on Mon Jun 17, 2013 at 08:31:06 AM PDT

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    •  this isn't exactly the case (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Catte Nappe, Pluto
      Any Joe Schmoe working for whichever private contractor can have access into every American's private info, with little to no oversight at all
      In fact he said in the live chat today:  
      The restrictions against this are policy based, not technically based, and can change at any time.
      Every organization that has access to our private information rely on policy based restrictions.  Any of the technical people who have access to the computer system could gain access to that database even if they are not authorized to do so.  Or the people who have legitimate authority to access the database could misuse the information.  The policy based restrictions that they all have are only as good as the honesty of the people who work there.
      •  How does this compare to other private information (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        glynis

        that the government collects?  Are these other data collection efforts also restricted by policy rather than technically?

        What may be happening here is that protecting this type of data is harder to do since it comes from a system accessible to everyone.  That fact may be what is making this seem scarier than other information the government has about us.

        West. No further west. All sea. --Robert Grenier

        by Nicolas Fouquet on Mon Jun 17, 2013 at 10:46:22 AM PDT

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        •  My assumption is (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Garrett

          that most of the restrictions are policy rather than technically based.  But that's only based on my experience in the health care field in a quasi technical role.   I don't know if there are other technical restrictions that are possible.  

          •  Agreed (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            glynis

            Thus, my point would be that a fierce reaction to what is going on is driven by inconsistently applied lack of trust in the government.  Can we truly blame the government for applying similar policies across multiple agencies and data collection efforts?  I don't think we can we fairly say the NSA "scandal" is really a significant change in policy, but rather a continuation of it.

            If the context is more appropriately understood, the debate will be a more productive one, in my view.

            West. No further west. All sea. --Robert Grenier

            by Nicolas Fouquet on Mon Jun 17, 2013 at 11:02:20 AM PDT

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          •  Banks rely on audit reports (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Garrett

            of customer service agent, teller, activity.  These are reviewed by managers to ensure no one is snooping or ripping customers off.

            Even Democrats can be asses. Look at Rahm Emanuel.

            by Helpless on Mon Jun 17, 2013 at 04:21:38 PM PDT

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          •  Technical restrictions are discussed (0+ / 0-)

            in the USA Today roundtable.

            Binney: ... And you can then encrypt it so that nobody can interrogate that base randomly.

            That's the way of preventing this kind of random access by a contractor or by the FBI or any other DHS (Department of Homeland Security) or any other department of government. They couldn't go in and find anybody. You couldn't target your next-door neighbor...

            It's all within our capabilities.

            Drake: It's been within our capabilities for well over 12 years.

            Technical restrictions are well within their capabilities. And yet, for some reason, they haven't done it.
        •  The IRS jealously guards your returns (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Garrett

          If it didn't, MItt wouldn't have had a chance of keeping his returns out of the press.

          Census department too.

          Even Democrats can be asses. Look at Rahm Emanuel.

          by Helpless on Mon Jun 17, 2013 at 04:18:50 PM PDT

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      •  Manual Policy is worthless (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Garrett

        Unless there is a system tracking every access and requiring single case authorization codes, and access reports that are actually reviewed by someone knowledgeable of the cases being reviewed there is no control.  The honor system just doesn't cut it.  Giving carte blanche to anyone with a security clearance doesn't cut it.    After working in a bank's IT department for years, I know what I'm talking about.

        Even Democrats can be asses. Look at Rahm Emanuel.

        by Helpless on Mon Jun 17, 2013 at 04:16:08 PM PDT

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