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View Diary: NSA Lawsuits Because Snowden, Whistleblower (246 comments)

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  •  interesting... (7+ / 0-)
    The detailed records - which cannot be independently verified - show specific dates and the IP addresses of computers in Hong Kong and on the mainland hacked by the National Security Agency over a four-year period.

    They also include information indicating whether an attack on a computer was ongoing or had been completed, along with an amount of additional operational information.

    The small sample data suggests secret and illegal NSA attacks on Hong Kong computers had a success rate of more than 75 per cent, according to the documents. The information only pertains to attacks on civilian computers with no reference to Chinese military operations, Snowden said.

    a couple of things come to mind.

    1) compromising civilian computers significantly increases the likelihood of attacking innocent people.

    2) is there a serious threat of terrorism from hong kong and chinese civilians?  how about from the offices of the eu?  how about the attendees of the g20? - it seems that these hacks may have very little to do with terrorism or military matters.

    i'm part of the 99% - america's largest minority

    by joe shikspack on Thu Jul 18, 2013 at 01:45:39 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  At last, a response! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joe shikspack

      To answer you points:
      1) We don't know what information was targeted on those computers, and neither did Snowden. I'll accept the characterization of those computers as civilian (how this was determined is not mentioned in the article); there are plenty of legitimate reasons for the NSA hacking them (for example, they might be computers used for corporate espionage, by Chinese civilians trying to access sensitive US government information, part of the privately owned networking infrastructure through which some Chinese govt cyberattack traffic was routed). The point is, without knowing why those computers were hacked by the NSA, Snowden chose to reveal that they were (to ingratiate himself with his hosts). That is not whistle blowing.

      2) The NSA is not tasked solely with gathering information about terrorists, so it doesn't really matter that HK and Chinese civilians aren't a terrorist threat. There are other legitimate threats to the US and its interests.  As for the other instances of surveillance you mention, they seem wrong to me. Without knowing more about them, I'll concede that they should not have happened, and am thankful that they have been revealed.  

      •  so it seems that your point is speculative... (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Words In Action, dmd76, DeadHead, JesseCW

        at best.

        neither you nor i have any idea of why those particular machines were attacked by the nsa.

        however, it is quite possible that snowden knows that piece of information.  having access to the entirety of the nsa's system, one presumably could know quite a number of things.

        since snowden has not yet been found to be passing on false information, when he says that these were civilian machines, i have no reason to doubt that characterization.  similarly, i have no reason to doubt that his characterization of the nsa's attack on hong kong and chinese civilians was blanket surveillance.

        in the absence of information from the nsa, and no reason to doubt snowden's characterizations and extensive documentation, i am prepared to believe that the nsa was doing something that we might consider quite inappropriate were we to know the full details.

        i'm part of the 99% - america's largest minority

        by joe shikspack on Thu Jul 18, 2013 at 04:33:55 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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