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Hans
01-06-2014, 07:05 AM
The U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) implied in a letter this week that it can not answer to Congress fully due to national security.

Specifically, the NSA refused to (for now, at least) answer a direct question from U.S. Senator Bernard "Bernie" Sanders (D-Verm.) regarding whether the NSA "spies" on Congress.

Sen. Sanders wrote in a leter addressed to retiring/resigning NSA chief General Keith Brian Alexander:

Has the NSA spied, or is the NSA currently spying, on members of Congress or other American elected officials? “Spying” would include gathering metadata on calls made from official or personal phones, content from websites visited or emails sent, or collecting any other data from a third party not made available to the general public in the regular course of business?


In a preliminary reply, given to CNN, the NSA more or less shot down the Senator's request. It refused to directly answer his question, instead stating:

NSA's authorities to collect signals intelligence data include procedures that protect the privacy of U.S. persons. Such protections are built into and cut across the entire process. Members of Congress have the same privacy protections as all U.S. persons.

The NSA has already claimed it does not "spy" on Americans or "collect" their data in the language of the NSA, but it does "touch" their data. In plain English this means it does spy on Americans and collect their data. The NSA has also stated that any intercepted data from Americans is held only "temporarily". Recent leaks reveal "temporarily" in plain English means it is housed in an NSA deep storage facility for 15 years.

http://www.dailytech.com/NSA+Refuses+to+Answer+to+Congress/article34041.htm

Slippery slope.

Aristotle
01-06-2014, 10:07 AM
indeed

Hans
01-06-2014, 05:40 PM
It will be interesting to see what happens when the next budget year hits.
Hopefully Congress uses it power to cut their funding. That is one thing the NSA has no direct control over.

Hans
01-06-2014, 05:58 PM
CES 2014: Qualcomm CEO on NSA -- "We Can't Comment on That"


At the close of Qualcomm Inc.'s (QCOM) Monday 2014 Computer Electronics Show (CES 2014) keynote I asked Qualcomm's new CEO Steve Mollenkopf a question that's of keen interest to foreign customers -- how can Qualcomm's technology be trusted in light of recent revelations of companies appearing to assist the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) to spy not only on Americans, but on business leaders in ally states such as Brazil, Japan, South Korea, France, and Germany?

The CEO gave me a pretty boilerplate nonanswer. He stated:

I think if you look at Qualcomm's technology you will see that we're among the leaders in the industry in security. But as for what the government is doing we can not comment on that.

http://www.dailytech.com/CES+2014+Qualcomm+CEO+on+NSA++We+Cant+Comment+on+T hat/article34058.htm


It is not a good idea to leave it up to the NSA to decide what can be discussed or what can not be discussed.
The impact of that could be tremendous.

Aristotle
01-06-2014, 06:04 PM
It will be interesting to see what happens when the next budget year hits.
Hopefully Congress uses it power to cut their funding. That is one thing the NSA has no direct control over.

The NSA is not going to win any popularity contests in the near future, so I would think Congress would find little negative blow-back from the American people should such a thing occur.