Surveillance society – A very bad week for privacy.

(Cross-post from my other blog, Outrun Change.)

Joke of the week – if my computer or website crashes, can I get a backup copy from NSA?

Lots of publicity this week on extensive federal monitoring of citizens and non citizens. No time to write a full post, so just a quick note to put some dots on the page. Hopefully will have time to connect them later

Four massive stories this week:

Gathering metadata for all Verizon phone calls

Guardian – NSA collecting phone records of millions of Verizon customers daily

Gathering metadata for three biggest providers and credit card transactions

Wall Street Journal – U.S. Collects Vast Data Trove

Gathering data from internet providers

Washington Post reveals PRISM program

“Collection directly from the servers of these U.S. Service Providers: Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, Skype, YouTube, Apple.”

USPS recording front and back of every piece of mail

The Smoking Gun – Ricin Suspect was Tracked Via Mail Scanners

This was also a surprise. Check out the detail of how the perp was identified.

According to FBI Agent James Spiropoulos, investigators accessed a Postal Service computer system that “incorporates a Mail Isolation Control and Tracking (MICT) program which photographs and captures an image of every mail piece that is processed.”

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