NSA/GCHQ Use Lolcats To Discuss What They Learn By Spying On All Of Our YouTube Views And Facebook Likes
from the squeaky-dolphins-and-lolcats dept
The reporters reached out to multiple tech companies, who note that they had nothing to do with this. That's true, as it seems clear that the information was gleaned from the taps placed on the backbone, with the help of the giant telcos, rather than the internet companies. However, at this point, it seems time for any company to recognize that if any bit of data is not being encrypted, the NSA/GCHQ is looking through it. Google, once again, seems particularly upset to discover this was going on, after it had pushed back on attempts by the UK to set up data retention rules for this kind of purpose -- when it's clear that GCHQ was already doing it anyway.
A source close to Google added that Google was “shocked” because the company had pushed back against British legislation that would have required Google to store its metadata and other information for U.K. government use. The legislation, introduced by Home Secretary Theresa May in 2012, was publicly repudiated by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg in 2013 and has never become law. May hopes to reintroduce a modified version this spring.While it may have been reasonable in the past to assume that if the government wasn't asking for this information via the front door, the info was safe, given both of the big stories of the day, it seems that every online company needs to get much more serious about encryption.
“It’s extremely surprising,” said the source, “that while they were pushing for the data via the law, they might have simultaneously been using their capability to grab it anyway.”