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Thursday, August 1, 2013

  • As Edward Snowden Wins 1-Year Asylum in Russia, NSA Program Tracking Real-Time Internet Use Exposed

    Snowdenasylum

    National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden has been given one year temporary political asylum in Russia. Snowden has reportedly already left the Moscow airport where he has been holed up for over a month. On Wednesday, The Guardian newspaper revealed details about another secret NSA program based on leaked documents provided by Snowden. The program, XKeyscore, allows analysts to search with no prior authorization through vast databases containing emails, online chats and the browsing histories of millions of individuals giving NSA analysts real-time access to "nearly everything a typical user does on the internet." To discuss these latest developments, we’re joined by Spencer Ackerman, national security editor at The Guardian.

  • NSA Confirms Dragnet Phone Records Collection, But Admits It Was Key in Stopping Just 1 Terror Plot

    Nsabuilding

    Testifying before the Senate on Wednesday, National Security Agency Deputy Director John Inglis conceded that the bulk collection of phone records of millions of Americans under Section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act has been key in stopping only one terror plot — not the dozens officials had previously said. Ahead of Wednesday’s Senate hearing, the Obama administration released three heavily censored documents related to its surveillance efforts, but the White House has refused to declassify the legal arguments underlying the dragnet or the original rulings by the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, on which the released order to collect phone records was based. Meanwhile, the head of the NSA, General Keith Alexander, was repeatedly interrupted by critics of government surveillance in a speech Wednesday before the Black Hat conference, a gathering of hackers and cybersecurity professionals in Las Vegas. We’re joined by two guests: Spencer Ackerman, national security editor at The Guardian, and James Bamford, an investigative reporter who has covered the National Security Agency for three decades after helping expose its existence in the 1980s.