As my colleague Ryan Gallagher detailed last night, the newly revealed PRISM snooping makes the Verizon surveillance that got everyone worked up yesterday look largely like kids' stuff. According to the Washington Post and the Guardian, the National Security Agency has obtained access to the central servers of major U.S. Internet companies as part of a secret program that involves the monitoring of emails, file transfers, photos, videos, chats, and even live surveillance of search terms. And when we say major companies, we mean the big boys: Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, AOL, Skype, YouTube, and Apple.
The Post disclosed Thursday that it had obtained classified PowerPoint slides detailing the program from a career intelligence officer who felt "horror" over its privacy-invading capabilities. "They quite literally can watch your ideas form as you type," the source told the newspaper, providing the perfect pull-quote for the Internet.
I (of course!) recommend that you give Gallagher's post a read if you haven't all ready. But here are a few links to some other PRISM-related pieces that are also worth your time.
- Washington Post: U.S. mining data from 9 leading Internet firms; companies deny knowledge
- Guardian: NSA taps in to user data of Facebook, Google and others, secret files reveal
- And, of course, the leaked PowerPoint slides.
- Wall Street Journal's Law Blog: How The Government Justifies Surveillance
- Washington Post's WonkBlog: How Congress Unknowingly Legalized PRISM in 2007
- New York Times: Despite Ambivalence, a Strong Embrace of Divisive Security Tools
- Moneybox: Is Prism Going To Harm US High-Tech Exports?
- NPR: Section Of Patriot Act Allowing NSA Program Is Use To Debate
- The New Yorke: America Through the NSA's Prism
Bonus: The New York Times profiles Glenn Greenwald, the Guardian blogger who landed the Verizon scoop that started all this: Blogger, With Focus on Surveillance, Is at Center of a Debate