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View Diary: How the NSA protects us from terrorists and cheating spouses (134 comments)

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  •  Polygraph tests are very questionable (12+ / 0-)

    The efficacy of polygraphs is debated in the scientific community. In 2001, a significant fraction of the scientific community considered polygraphy to be pseudoscience.[4] In 2002, a review by the National Academies of Science found that testing can discriminate lying from truth telling at rates above chance, though below perfection.[5] These results apply only to specific events and not to screening where it is assumed that polygraph would work less well.[5] Effectiveness may also be worsened by counter measures.[5]
    Learn How To Always Pass Your Polygraph Test!

    But maybe you want to believe these guys;

    American Polygraph Association

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Mon Aug 26, 2013 at 10:01:08 AM PDT

    •  I wonder how many NSA employees who have (7+ / 0-)

      been guilty of this kind of snooping have passed their polygraph exams without confessing.

      The influence of the [executive] has increased, is increasing, and ought to be diminished.

      by lysias on Mon Aug 26, 2013 at 11:01:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Umm...Snowden? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Nailbanger, Shockwave

        If he was able to spy on the illegal spying, download a whole bunch of stuff, distribute it to multiple journalists (and JULIAN ASSANGE, ROTF!) and then make his way to Hong Kong, all the while setting up his next moves...and WHAMMO! NSA didn't see it coming?

    •  They are slightly more reliable than connecting (4+ / 0-)

      a metal spaghetti strainer to a copy machine with wires, putting the strainer on the guy's head, and then pressing the button to make a copy of a piece of paper with "He/She is lying" written on it every time you think the subject is lying.

      You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

      by Throw The Bums Out on Mon Aug 26, 2013 at 11:07:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  There are companies which train (6+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Kombema, onionjim, JVolvo, Shockwave, eztempo, anana

      people how to beat polygraph tests. In fact the government is pressing criminal charges against one of them.
      The Obama administration's war on whistleblowers was already fairly crazy, what with its official designation of "leakers" as "aiding the enemy," but now apparently it's extending even further. Federal agents have now launched criminal investigations into some instructors who claim they can teach you to beat a lie detector test, all done under the mandate of the war against whistleblowers.

      ...The criminal aimed at discouraging criminals and spies from infiltrating the U.S. government by using the polygraph-beating techniques, which are said to include controlled breathing, muscle tensing, tongue biting and mental arithmetic.

      The article mentions Penn & Teller teaching people how to beat polygraph tests in a televised show they did.

      I think it's been fairly well established that socio-/psychopaths can easily beat the machines, as they aren't going to have their heart rate or whatever jump just because they lied.

      So our highly-advanced and sophisticated Data Security Protection amounts to seeing if the witch floats, or the needle rises.

      You can see why someone who doesn't know how hinky the method is might freak out and confess. But serious breachers have to know the tricks.

      Was it Aldrich Aims who was getting US agents in Russia killed by the dozens who passed lie-detector tests for years?


      Actual Democrats: the surest, quickest, route to More Democrats. And actually addressing our various emergencies.

      by Jim P on Mon Aug 26, 2013 at 11:54:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Penn & Teller are well-known terrorists. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Jim P, JVolvo, Shockwave

        Everyone knows that.

        The fact that they're walking around right now is just more proof--if proof is needed--of the fact that our beneficent government would never abuse these powers.


        When you triangulate everything, you can't even roll downhill...

        by PhilJD on Mon Aug 26, 2013 at 12:31:04 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  It isn't the polygraph; (3+ / 0-)

      People tend to disclose information in the interview BEFORE the polygraph.  The polygrapher does a detailed interview ahead of time and then they hook the subject up and ask if he was truthful during the interview.  For some reason, the subject is inclined to disclose all kinds of incriminating information rather than risk getting a "deceptive" reading.

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