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View Diary: Under 300 Unique Phone Metadata Searches in 2012 (43 comments)

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  •  For the purpose of deliberately misleading (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bobswern, Code Monkey, CroneWit

    sentences are constructed VERY carefully in such letters.

    In 2012, for example, fewer than 300 unique identifiers were authorized for query under the RAS standard
    This sounds very reassuring...  But what does it actually say?

    fewer than 300 unique identifiers - ie, 300 specific people.  But what is left unsaid is how many thousands, tens of thousands, or hundreds of thousands of queries were run on 'non-unique identifiers', ie identifiers that might pull a small (or large) group of individuals out of the database.

    The rest of you boxquotes contain similar phrases that also can be interpreted to mean what seems reassuring, or could also be weasel wording to obscure the extent of program usage.

    You don't need hundreds of thousands of full time employees/contractors to deal with a few thousand wiretaps.

    •  Go read the actual letter ... (0+ / 0-)

      ... as you apparently didn't understand the process very well. If you have a phone number, that is the unique identifier, and only if it relates in a meaningful way to a known terrorist phone number can it be queried.

      Also, about this:

      You don't need hundreds of thousands of full time employees/contractors to deal with a few thousand wiretaps.

      We're not talking about wiretaps. I just used wiretaps in the diary above for perspective. Please keep up! We are talking about queries into data.

      Additionally, the NSA also handles system communications for the United States around the globe (i.e. keeping our messages encrypted), intelligence analyzing around the globe, cyber-security for the federal government and many other responsibilities. How many people do you think they have analyzing Chinese information right now? How many do you want doing that job? They also have to have people to clean the bathrooms and serve lunch, so I don't think your "numbers" argument is very good.

      I would tip you, but the man took away my tips.

      by Tortmaster on Tue Jul 23, 2013 at 07:20:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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