Glenn Greenwald published another story today, describing the details of the NSA Stellar Wind program, which if you believe the "messengers," may have been ended in 2011.
by Jeremy C. Owens, mercurynews.com -- 06/27/2013
The National Security Agency began tracking email and Internet-use data after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, continuing and expanding the program through 2011, according to new documents published by The Guardian on Thursday.
Thursday's report involves a different NSA program, a warrantless surveillance program code-named Stellar Wind that was begun in 2001, under President George W. Bush. The Guardian obtained a 2009 draft report by the NSA's inspector general and a 2007 Justice Department memo detailing the program, but did not reveal a source for the information.
President Barack Obama's administration confirmed that the program existed and was discontinued in 2011.
"The Internet metadata collection program authorized by the FISA court was discontinued in 2011 for operational and resource reasons and has not been restarted," Shawn Turner, director of communications for national intelligence, told the Guardian. "The program was discontinued by the executive branch as the result of an interagency review."
Well that's one way to put the NSA out of business -- starve them of "resources" and/or funds. Assuming it's true ... If only their Budget (and operations) were subject public scrutiny, eh?
Here's the story written by Glenn Greenwald today, describing the details of the NSA Stellar Wind program, which if you believe the "data miners," give a whole new meaning to the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon.
Say hello to the Two Degrees of Telephone Tagging...
by Glenn Greenwald and Spencer Ackerman, The Guardian, guardian.co.uk -- 27 June 2013
The collection of these records began under the Bush administration's wide-ranging warrantless surveillance program, collectively known by the NSA codename Stellar Wind.
"Seeing your IP logs -- and especially feeding them through sophisticated analytic tools -- is a way of getting inside your head that's in many ways on par with reading your diary," Sanchez added.
One function of this internet record collection is what is commonly referred to as "data mining", and which the NSA calls "contact chaining". The agency "analyzed networks with two degrees of separation (two hops) from the target", the report says. In other words, the NSA studied the online records of people who communicated with people who communicated with targeted individuals.
Contact chaining was considered off-limits inside the NSA before 9/11. In the 1990s, according to the draft IG report, the idea was nixed when the Justice Department "told NSA that the proposal fell within one of the Fisa definitions of electronic surveillance and, therefore, was not permissible when applied to metadata associated with presumed US persons".
Just because the new FISA Court, empowered by the Patriotic Act, told the NSA that chain-charting us out to Two Degrees of our social networking -- was now A-OK,
... what leads us to believe they actually stopped there after only 2 hops?
Afterall they were 1/3 of the way to "inter-linking" everyone in the world (via the Six Degrees concept) ... without a "check or balance" in the world, preventing them from simply charting out the whole shebang.
And 9/11 had just thrown the window wide open ...
[ Source -- You Really Are Just Six Degrees from Kevin Bacon | Popular Science www.popsci.com ]
As open as the Stellar Wind ...