Does that mean we can all relax … and forget about mass surveillance?
We asked the highest-level NSA whistleblower in history – William Binney – the high-level NSA executive who created the agency’s mass surveillance program for digital information, 36-year NSA veteran widely regarded as a “legend” within the agency, who served as the senior technical director within the agency, and managed thousands of NSA employees
WASHINGTON’S BLOG: The mainstream U.S. news is saying that the NSA’s metadata collection program is over.
Can we all relax and enjoy a beer now? Or is the NSA still spying on Americans?
WILLIAM BINNEY: The only thing that ended was the general warrants issued by the FISC [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court] for companies to give all their call records to NSA for processing.
Now, the data is held by the companies so NSA has to make a distributed query much like google does to its data centers.
This includes most of the metadata on US to US communications and the content with it.
Other than metadata, there is the data itself which means content of e-mails and phone calls.
I would also note, of the 80-100 fiber optic tap points on the AT&T lines in the Fairview program, most are distributed across the US according to the population distribution.
Now if they were only after foreign communications, the tap points would only be along the coasts where the transoceanic cables surface. Which clearly indicates that the targets of most of the Fairview program are AMERICANS – THAT’S US. I should also say that I have almost all of the specific locations of these tap points in the US and around the world all from sites on the web.
See this for background on Binney’s point about Fairview, as well as this graphic:
What does Binney mean that the NSA is recording content?
Binney – as well as high-level NSA whistleblowers Thomas Drake and Russell Tice – have all previously told Washington’s Blog that NSA has long recorded the content, and not just the metadata, of Americans’ phone calls. And see this. (The NSA is also converting our spoken words into text.)