NSA Tapping UN Isn't A Huge Surprise -- But Ability To Crack Video Conferencing Encryption Raises Questions
from the yay! dept
There's also the issue, as noted in the article, that President Obama has insisted that the spying on people was only done to prevent terrorism -- and spying on EU diplomats seems unlikely to have anything to do with terrorism prevention. But, again, spying between government officials is kind of expected, and not quite a huge deal, even if it may present a diplomatic problem for the US.
Much more interesting to me, however, is the snippet claiming that the NSA had figured out how to hack into the UN's video conferencing software, allowing them to record internal video conferences. In fact, after this was cracked just a year ago, a document was sent around, "celebrating" this:
Furthermore, NSA technicians working for the Blarney program have managed to decrypt the UN's internal video teleconferencing (VTC) system. The combination of this new access to the UN and the cracked encryption code have led to "a dramatic improvement in VTC data quality and (the) ability to decrypt the VTC traffic," the NSA agents noted with great satisfaction: "This traffic is getting us internal UN VTCs (yay!)." Within just under three weeks, the number of decrypted communications increased from 12 to 458.Yay! We can spy on more things! Yay! Either way, I'm curious if anyone knows who provides the UN's video conferencing technology, because that's now a much more interesting issue. The suggestion being made that the NSA "cracked" the encryption that was being used could have much wider implications if true -- so it would be nice to know what kind of encryption, and what sort of system is being used. Either way, I'm guessing that many in the UN will be seeking out alternative communication methods shortly.