Frenemy at the Gate

Last week the Guardian made claims that it received classified documents from a whistleblower stating the National Security Agency construction of a massive surveillance machine that has direct access to digital data from sites such as Facebook, Google, Apple and Yahoo.

What I find interesting is that we all seem to be surprised. The NSA has been collecting data since it was founded in the 1950s. And thanks to legislation that passed under the Bush administration, and renewed under the current administration, it is perfectly legal for government agencies to monitor all data channels.

Now, while I think we should investigate the extent to which the government has direct access to information, what amuses me is the general insecurity of our security agencies. While leaking classified documents is certainly a no-no in their eyes, why are they so afraid that we know this. The lack of transparency only fuels the conspiracy theories. But with a budget of well over $10 billion, I’m sure they won’t be losing too much sleep over it. And if they are, all they really need to do is tap into any phone call I have with my mom… That will put them right to bed.

Then again… There was an interesting article written a few months back discussing the challenges the Drug Enforcement Agency was having to decrypt Apple’s iMessage transmissions due to its encryption scheme. Hmmm….

Maybe I will get that new iPhone after all.

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