You have to admit the NSA is nothing but thorough. We all know they’re grabbing data from the Internet and cell networks and while that might lead you to believe you’re safe if you’re not actually connected to a network, you’d be wrong. Very wrong. The NSA has spy devices with built-in radios that can send data from unconnected computers to listening stations miles away. While this requires physical access to the computer, once installed they are undetectable unless you’re looking for an RF signal. They claim to only be using this technology against foreign targets but at this point does anyone believe them?
60 Minutes used to be on the forefront of investigative journalism. Just mentioning the name would strike fear in the hearts of anyone associated with dirty dealings. Now, with this Sunday’s thinly-disguised propaganda piece on the NSA, 60 Minutes has abandoned all pretext of being investigative.
After bailing out of the approval process, 23andMe’s DNA testing kit was (technically) banned from sale by the FDA. But it’s still for sale.
Charles Seife in Scientific American says that’s not the reason you should be concerned. That’s because 23andMe’s real business isn’t medical research, it’s data collection.
As part of my Information Security training, the architecture of TCP/IP and the OSI model were covered. They introduced TCP/IP (the basis of the Internet) as optimized for access, not security. Never has that been more apparent than now, with what the NSA has done with the Internet backbone via their QUANTUM program.
If I tell you that the NSA has broken privacy rules, you might not believe me. But if I tell you the numbers came from an NSA internal audit you might change your mind.
There’ been a widely-reported story about a woman on Long Island whose house was visited by a bunch of government agents because of some online searches for pressure cookers and backpacks. Everyone, including the woman, assumed it was Google who tipped off the agents. Turns out, it was her husband’s former employer since at least some of the searches were done on a company computer.
While Google does routinely give up your search data to anyone who requests it, it’s also important to remember that your work computer, email, searches, etc. are also being monitored. If you think you have privacy, anywhere, you’re only fooling yourself.