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EFF Reports GHCQ and NSA Keeping Tabs On Wikileaks Visitors and Reporters

samzenpus posted about 6 months ago | from the lets-have-a-look dept.

Privacy 82

sandbagger writes in with a story about U.S. and British government interest and involvement with journalists visiting the Wikileaks website. "The Intercept recently published an article and supporting documents indicating that the NSA and its British counterpart GCHQ surveilled and even sought to have other countries prosecute the investigative journalism website WikiLeaks. GCHQ also surveilled the millions of people who merely read the WikiLeaks website. The article clarifies the lengths that these two spy organizations go to track their targets and confirms, once again, that they do not confine themselves to spying on to those accused of terrorism. One document contains a summary of an internal discussion in which officials from two NSA offices discuss whether to categorize WikiLeaks as a "malicious foreign actor" for surveillance targeting purposes. This would be an important categorization because agents have significantly more authority to engage in surveillance of malicious foreign actors."

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Power Corrupts (5, Insightful)

Nyder (754090) | about 5 months ago | (#46293431)

And Absolute Power Corrupts, mainly those who use "Secret Courts" and "National Security" as tools to get the power they want.

Yes, our government is rotten. The Congress critters, the Senators, the White House. They have failed us on mainly levels. They all need to be impeached and we need to get new peeps in there who remember that the United States is made of of it's citizens, not the corporations.

And absolute power corrupts absolutely (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293525)

Fixed that for you ;-)

Close, but (1)

ThatsNotPudding (1045640) | about 5 months ago | (#46293839)

The Congress critters, the Senators, the White House

...all know their secrets have been Hoovered up by the NSA during a decade of mining. Why else do you think there has been such a muted response to Mr. Snowden's discoveries? J Edgar was never really challenged either; most timidly waited until he died.

Re:Power Corrupts (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293913)

Power without consequence corrupts.

Re:Power Corrupts (2, Funny)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | about 5 months ago | (#46293983)

Careful, citizen. Criticizing the President is racist. Trust the government. The government is your friend. Not trusting the President is sedition. Sedition is punishable by twenty years in federal prison. Any citizen that attempts to prove the President is wrong is a Commie mutant traitor.

Re:Power Corrupts (3, Insightful)

jythie (914043) | about 5 months ago | (#46294063)

The tricky part is, how to roll it back. One of the reasons that the government is the way it is, is, well, they get the votes. Politicians are not stupid (even though they often seem so) and are mostly filled with self interest. They generally only do what keeps themselves and their in-group in power, and much of that comes down to being sensitive to what the majority of voters want.

In other words, our government is a reflection of its citizens, the government ha not forgotten that the US is made of citizens, it is a distilled representation of them. Unfortunately for us the voter base of the US is a highly conflicted and fragmented society with passionately mutually exclusive ideas about how to do things. In many ways the best way to fix things would be a one time massive tax, split the country up into maybe half a dozen or dozen countries, and pay moving expenses to anyone who wants to migrate to the region that best represents them. Much of the rottenness comes from our deeply conflicted philosophies, which I am not sure there is any way to reconcile.

Of course it also does not help that so much of the population are arm-chair economists (or other such things) who believe that their basic idealistic understanding of problems (where they do not have to deal with the complexities or consequences) is more valid then people who spend decades examining them, so people passionately vote about things they do not actually understand all that well but really strongly believe that they do.

Which is probably why so many fictional worlds go with guild-style governments where representation is built around professions rather then geographic regions.

Re:Power Corrupts (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46295309)

r u fucking kidding me ? ? ?
HOW in dog's name did this drivel get voted 4 insightful ? ? ?
kongresskritters DO NOT represent us 99% in nearly any way/shape/form, they represent the 1%...
hell, they ARE the 1%: what is it, about half of them are millionaires (and/or lawyers, i'm sure that is coinkydink)...
maybe that represents YOU, poindexter, but not 99% of us...

so, a small percentage of citizens eligible to vote, who only vote about 40-50% of the time, with a slate of korporate-approved/financed mercenaries, are electing a 'distillation' of their own hopes/dreams/aspirations for gummint ? ? ?
get the fuck outta here, and take all the clueless idiots who upvoted your nonsense...
(OR, is this just an example of a gummint bot with the social media s/w they've bought to have a couple hundred sockpuppets per propagandist ? ? ?)

voting is.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46295607)

a psyop to make people think that they have a choice. The CIA rigs elections in foreign countries. Do you think they haven't done it here? They have. And there is proof of presidential electronic vote tampering here within the past 20 years.

nothing new (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46301669)

""And Absolute Power Corrupts, mainly those who use "Secret Courts" and "National Security" as tools to get the power they want.
Yes, our government is rotten. The Congress critters, the Senators, the White House. They have failed us on mainly levels. They all need to be impeached and we need to get new peeps in there who remember that the United States is made of of it's citizens, not the corporations.""

The FBI, CIA, Pentagon, ect.. were spying on US citizens long before the NSA or GCHQ. You have a [what I would call} a communist dictator in the Federal government which according to the constitution is illegal. The media/press are to blame as well since they do nothing but peddle propaganda, without finding any real truth behind why the US government or in many cases the federal government is pushing such ridiculous BS. And its only when a majority of citizens or a few journalist bother to figure it out, does the media/press bother to report it, and when they do, they use sensationalism and pretend as if no one knew or figured it long before they bothered to report the truth. [or at least there version of what they think is truth].

You go back to the people that were involved in creating the country's Democracy and they were for the most part yuppies, or business tycoons, so its not surprising that corporations and the wealthy still make the rules and laws that favor them. The very people that most hail has the forefathers were the same as today's politicians, even they broke they supposed constitution. You have to explore these people, beyond they myths they teach in schools, and on TV to find out they're no better.

"ON" (0)

stoborrobots (577882) | about 5 months ago | (#46293435)

... Keeping Tabs ON Wikileaks Visitors...

Reminds me of Deus Ex (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293451)

The more I read the news the more I feel like I fell asleep after playing too much Deus Ex back in year 2000 and simply never woke up again. I wonder which levels of paranoia writers will have to appeal to in the coming decades to out do reality.

Third-degree websurfing (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293455)

Not only Wikileaks Visitors are counted (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293467)

If you read carefully all information on this topic the you will conclude that all visits to all websites are recorded by IP address, and this information is kept for ever. There are multiple and overlapping spying programs for that. In fact, every IP address has a profile, such as IP address 123.456.78.90 in requested period (such as a year) has visited following websites google (904 times), cnn (850), amazon (49), espn (545), facebook( 490), vevo (450), youtube (689), slashdot (365) etc. This profile of every IP address has it's own fingerprint, which is basically modified statistical distribution of the websites visited. There are even patents filed which allow identification of individual only by this fingerprint. Obviously, if you are visiting websites such as wikileaks, democracynow or any other that are designated as "malicious", your IP address is automatically flagged. What the slides show is duplication of efforts as a preventative measure to have a second, independent and precise record of visitors so that when the future whistle blowers will provide information, it will be easier to trace down to the origin. The real action, however, is not a collection itself, but what later happens with the data collected. You would be fool not to assume that analysts are not further analyzing the data and making conclusions. If, for example, someone from us military IP (or IP associated with miliatry) would start sending gigabytes of data, that someone would most certainly be getting extra attention.

Re:Not only Wikileaks Visitors are counted (0)

Alioth (221270) | about 5 months ago | (#46294051)

On a point of pedantry, you can't have 123.456.78.90 because 456 is greater than 255.

Re:Not only Wikileaks Visitors are counted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46295111)

And you can't call a number in the 555 area code.

Re:Not only Wikileaks Visitors are counted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46295311)

And the 127.0.0.0 subdomain routes back to yourself....

Also don't forget to wipe front to back.

tanquam ex ungue leonem (1)

epine (68316) | about 5 months ago | (#46298323)

There are even patents filed which allow identification of individual only by this fingerprint.

The government is doing things for which there are even patents? Wow. I had no idea.

Geez, with IPv6 giving every single web client a distinct address, you'd think the NSA would be campaigning behind the scenes to have their carefully curated fat-pipe monopolists ramming IPv6 down our collective throats.

And damn, what a surprising patent, with only about a thousand years of prior art.

On 29 January 1697 Newton returned at 4pm from working at the Royal Mint and found in his post the problems that Bernoulli had sent to him directly; two copies of the printed paper containing the problems. Newton stayed up to 4am before arriving at the solutions; on the following day he sent a solution of them to Montague, then president of the Royal Society for anonymous publication.

He announced that the curve required in the first problem must be a cycloid, and he gave a method of determining it. He also solved the second problem, and in so doing showed that by the same method other curves might be found which cut off three or more segments having similar properties.

Solutions were also obtained from Leibniz and the Marquis de l'HÃpital; and, although Newton's solution was anonymous, he was recognized by Bernoulli as its author; "tanquam ex ungue leonem" (we recognize the lion by his claw).

I guess that cuts both ways.

PS: Notice our fine Slashdot Classic buggering poor Mr l'HÃpital.

Everybody, visit wikileaks now! (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293499)

Let's all go and visit wikileaks now, just to produce more noise in their statistics. Even better, visit wikileaks from different machines (home, work). Set up a cron job to "test network connection" by fetching a page from wikileaks every hour, on some old idle server at some random customer site...

Re:Everybody, visit wikileaks now! (3, Interesting)

ketomax (2859503) | about 5 months ago | (#46293537)

What about reading this slashdot discussion? Does that put me under surveillance too? Surely, more productive things can be run on these computing resources than looking into my boredom remedies.

Re:Everybody, visit wikileaks now! (4, Insightful)

cdrudge (68377) | about 5 months ago | (#46293977)

I think it's safe to presume that you, as well as every other internet user, were already under surveillance to some degree even before this story was published.

Re:Everybody, visit wikileaks now! (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293557)

https://wikileaks.org/helloNSA_GCHQ/we_all_know_you_are_watching_and_dont_care.html

Re:Everybody, visit wikileaks now! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46295957)

https://wikileaks.org/helloNSA_GCHQ/we_all_know_you_are_watching_and_dont_care.html

Nope, not a good idea. It's easy to filter out that as junk. Better just surf there with and check a random page.

Re:Everybody, visit wikileaks now! (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about 5 months ago | (#46296451)

ROFLMAO

404

We are sorry, the file you have requested could not be found.

Please wait few minutes and try again.

Re:Everybody, visit wikileaks now! (1)

Gr8Apes (679165) | about 5 months ago | (#46298105)

How long until the first virus / malware infects machines everywhere and does nothing other than visit random "malicious" web sites such as wikileaks or the wikipedia page on wikileaks and Snowden in irregular bursts, just like someone browsing?

so of I (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293511)

of I go to wiki an lukup leak I get nsa injested? this is not the french way!

Re:so of I (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about 5 months ago | (#46297393)

Don't worry - the NSA will do it to you the French way, the Greek way, the English way, and a few ways that you've never heard of as well!

Organisational mandates (4, Informative)

Richard_at_work (517087) | about 5 months ago | (#46293545)

This part of the summary made me pause:

and confirms, once again, that they do not confine themselves to spying on to those accused of terrorism.

Nowhere can I find any indication that the mandates of the NSA, GCHQ, MI5, MI5, the CIA, the FBI (or any other of the organisations usually linked in these stories) are limited to anti-terrorism duties alone - it may form a large part of their activities, but its not their sole purpose.

Putting everything else aside, that part of the article is ridiculous.

Re:Organisational mandates (3, Informative)

Dunbal (464142) | about 5 months ago | (#46293587)

it may form a large part of their activities,

No, it forms a large part of the political excuse to create and fund these entities.

Re:Organisational mandates (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293639)

No, it forms a large part of the political excuse to create and fund these entities.

What?

All the entities listed pre-date the boogeyman that is Terrah.

Re:Organisational mandates (2)

cold fjord (826450) | about 5 months ago | (#46294303)

No, it forms a large part of the political excuse to create and fund these entities.

Those agencies all existed decades before 9/11, which I expect you knew. Do you want to guess again?

Re:Organisational mandates (2)

Dunbal (464142) | about 5 months ago | (#46294415)

Terrorism is just the latest incarnation of the boogeyman, it's always about "defending you" and "protecting you" from (Nazis/Japs/Commies/Soviets/Terrorists/Pedophiles/Eastasia).

Re:Organisational mandates (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 5 months ago | (#46294571)

That's an interesting insight you have there. Boogeymen are generally considered to be imaginary creatures that pose no genuine threat. Does that mean that you think that the Nazis, Imperial Japan, and the Soviet Union (and other communist nations) posed no genuine threat to either the US or UK?

Re:Organisational mandates (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46295095)

They don't pose a threat any more. You set yourself up for this...

Look at the list he posted again. Which of those things are not like the others? (Hint, there are boogeymen listed and they aren't the Nazis.)

Re:Organisational mandates (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 5 months ago | (#46295445)

Eastasia is (apparently) a literary reference to 1984, and doesn't really apply. Pedophiles aren't a focus of national security, but the FBI does investigate them as part of ordinary law enforcement. Terrorists do exist and have repeatedly attacked the US, its embassies, and armed forces, causes thousands of deaths. Terrorism does present an ongoing threat. The Soviets are basically gone, but Russia is picking up where they left off by assuming many former Soviet practices, including threatening NATO with nuclear strikes and testing US and UK defences with submarines and bombers. "Commies" still control several countries, including China, which recently published in official state media maps showing nuclear strikes against the US and praising their naval buildup. Japan is a friend an ally of the US these days, but the US may end up having to fight alongside it if China causes an incident. China has recently been practicing landing marines in apparent preparation to take Islands currently held by Japan. Nazis no longer hold power in the Germany, but neo-Nazis are still an active movement, and a cause for concern. Other European nations, including Russia, have similar movements.

Re:Organisational mandates (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46295107)

Just like the police officer yelling at someone to "stop resisting" while kicking him in the face is dispensing justice. Once could argue that self fulfilling prophecies tend to be- self fulfilling. The Nazis for example filled their people with paranoia about being under imminent threat from the West and from Marxism. It turned out they were quite right. Japan was left no choice but war thanks to the oil embargo imposed by who? You can see echoes today, EU and US politically threatening countries like Ukraine, Syria and Venezuela, asking the impossible or promising the stick if the impossible is not delivered. It's the same damned game. And THEN you have the nerve to say "we need a standing army to "defend" ourselves".

Re:Organisational mandates (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 5 months ago | (#46295481)

Sympathy for the Nazis? Pity for them? Interesting .....

And the US or UK doesn't need a standing army? Dude ....

Re:Organisational mandates (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46297755)

You're as liberal as they come. How can I tell? You're an authoritarian. Get out of here, you smelly hippy.

Oh, and terrorists largely are bogeymen. Some exist, but the threat is greatly exaggerated, so many don't.

Re:Organisational mandates (1)

Uberbah (647458) | about 5 months ago | (#46295455)

Those agencies all existed decades before 9/11, which I expect you knew. Do you want to guess again?

Which does nothing whatsoever to change his point, since ones ones HAVE been created - hello Fatherland Security - and it has been used to fund them. Like he said.

Do you want to try not being willfully obtuse?

Re:Organisational mandates (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 5 months ago | (#46295759)

The Department of Homeland Security is almost entirely nothing but a regrouping of already existing agencies (FEMA, Coast Guard, Customs, border security, etc. ) under a new headquarters. You can panic about that if you want, but I don't think there is much reason for it. In fact DHS is mostly what the Ministry of Interior is in other countries. (That name was already taken in the US for a different purpose.)

Do you want to try not being willfully obtuse?

I think the most delicious irony is often the unintentional irony.

Re:Organisational mandates (1)

Uberbah (647458) | about 5 months ago | (#46296435)

Which again does what to change the fact that it's a new agency with a new bureaucracy. Nothing.

The Department of Homeland Security is almost entirely nothing but a regrouping of already existing agencies

As if there wasn't already a great deal of redundancy amongst the various intelligence agencies [intelligence.gov] well before 911.

I think the most delicious irony is often the unintentional irony.

Probably because you're a highly dishonest person with extremely low intelligence. New agency? Check. Used as an excuse for funding? Check.

Run along, troll.

Re:Organisational mandates (4, Informative)

FriendlyLurker (50431) | about 5 months ago | (#46293591)

Not mentioned in the summary, but ThePirateBay users are also included in that spying. Why do we give billions of taxpayers money to the NSA, GCHQ, MI5, MI5, CIA and the FBI again? Industrial Espionage for a few elite industry groups and to help corrupt politicians maintain power it would seem...

Re:Organisational mandates (1)

Sepodati (746220) | about 5 months ago | (#46293783)

It's included in a question, as an example.

Re:Organisational mandates (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46299529)

Just more proof that the NSA are inside the RIAA's pockets..

Re:Organisational mandates (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293625)

Nowhere can I find any indication that the mandates of the NSA, GCHQ, MI5, MI5, the CIA, the FBI (or any other of the organisations usually linked in these stories) are limited to anti-terrorism duties alone - it may form a large part of their activities, but its not their sole purpose.

Everything they do they use taxpayers money for.
If the police is paid to uphold law and order but spends the time drinking coffee instead then that is a problem. That doesn't mean that he can't drink coffee, just that he should do so on his own time for his own money.

This doesn't mean that it is OK that NSA snoops Wikileaks on their own time, just that your argument doesn't hold. NSA is currently doing things they shouldn't. If it is criminal or not is up for discussion but no matter how you look at it they should stop doing it.

Re:Organisational mandates (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46294775)

That is a pretty terrible analogy. To be more accurate, it would be like a group of rogue police officers getting together during work hours to go kick in the doors and demand cash from citizens that they believe might not have paid their taxes... without consulting their boss nor the IRS.

When you have a government position and are paid to do a job and given explicit permission to do that one job, it doesn't mean you can do whatever the fuck you want, hide it from everybody (including your employers and assorted people of importance above you), and then claim that is your job.

Re:Organisational mandates (2)

thegarbz (1787294) | about 5 months ago | (#46293655)

Nowhere can I find any indication that the mandates of the NSA, GCHQ, MI5, MI5, the CIA, the FBI (or any other of the organisations usually linked in these stories) are limited to anti-terrorism duties alone - it may form a large part of their activities, but its not their sole purpose.

Indeed. I'm not sure of the complete history of most of those agencies but weren't a large number of them funded under the principle of domestic counter-intelligence? The NSA has it's history in breaking ciphers of WWI, the CIA espionage of Axis forces during WWII, MI5 heck that was formed on the basis of counterintelligence.

All of these agencies and others around the world (ASIO was formed to eliminate Soviet spies from the Australian government), were formed on the basis of defending countries from foreign forces. The FBI I think are the only ones which were formed on the basis of domestic law enforcement.

No Shit, Sherlock! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293749)

Of course. It's their fucking job. If you were a malicious foreign actor, would you start with wikileaks? Given that there was a discussion about whether or not wikileaks was a malicious foreign actor indicates clearly that they were within the bounds of law instead of just gathering everything they could.

Re:No Shit, Sherlock! (1)

Sique (173459) | about 5 months ago | (#46293943)

No, they were discussing how to cover their asses if it was found out. "Malicious foreign actor" is a nice excuse, because you could spin anything so it fits the description.

Re:No Shit, Sherlock! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46294807)

Angela Merkel has been outspoken about her distrust for the US since various revelations came to light within the last year. By definition, then, she is both "malicious" and "foreign." Are you suggesting that we take out Germany (again)? Or is it just more painfully obvious that the word "malicious" is being misused and instead of actually being being used as "dangerous" it is instead a nice-sounding cover for "people whom we don't like?"

Re:No Shit, Sherlock! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46294947)

. If you were a malicious foreign actor, would you start with wikileaks?

No. I'd start with the mapping of the supply roots. Wikileaks is functioning as a packaged outrage for the people and politicians. If I'd be a someone seeking to arrest a malicious actor who I think is thinking this outrage package is practically useful information for a great patriotic struggle in the Eastasia, I'd inject some selected misinformation to the system and tip off the people I'm interested about, leading them to a controlled situation.
  "Those who do no evil suffer not when they are Wikileaked." -- ancient proverb from the distant, democratic past.

Re:Organisational mandates (0)

Tokolosh (1256448) | about 5 months ago | (#46293831)

Admins, please add a "Naïve" category to the moderation options.

Re:Organisational mandates (3, Interesting)

inhuman_4 (1294516) | about 5 months ago | (#46294179)

A big part of the issue is that some of these organizations shouldn't be doing any of this at all.

A big part missing the the discussion is that the NSA is a military outfit. It is part of the DoD and its commander is a serving member of the US armed forces. It is the signals intelligence branch of the US military. Their primay mission is ensure secure communications for the US command and control infastructure, and gather intelligence on foreign military powers.

How did we get from spying on the Soviet Union, to monitoring the phones of every American citizen? As a military outfit they shouldn't be operating in the the US at all. You wouldn't let soldiers patrol the streets acting like cops, so why are thay taking on tasks the rightfully belong on the hands of the FBI? The simple answer is secrecy. Whatever legal games they want to play, at the end of the day they knew that they shouldn't be doing it, so the tasked it to the DoD so they can call it a matter of national security.

Re:Organisational mandates (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about 5 months ago | (#46298363)

"It's illegal for the United States to spy on it's citizens. Likewise the same for Great Britain. But under the terms of the UK-USA agreement, Britain spies on Americans and America spies on British citizens and the two groups trade data."

http://nstarzone.com/SPIES.htm... [nstarzone.com]

You may or may not accept that link as any kind of a source - but you may take any bit of that page, and go in search of more authoritative sources, if you wish.

Long story short, our governments have a long history of circumventing the law regarding citizen's rights. The arrangement has been in place since about WW2. The law prohibits our government from spying on us, so they simply have another government to spy on us, then repay that government in kind.

define and conquer (0)

Mister Liberty (769145) | about 5 months ago | (#46293607)

Their defininition of 'journalist' in this case differs somehwat
from the one Miranda saw fall short against him the other day.

Re:define and conquer (1)

Snowgen (586732) | about 5 months ago | (#46294667)

Their defininition of 'journalist' ...

The distinction between "journalist" and "foreign propagandist" often depends on the government that's making the distinction.

Just ask Tokyo Rose [wikipedia.org] .

Let's all wave to them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293617)

*waves to his agent at the services*

back at ya (1)

budr (111245) | about 5 months ago | (#46293645)

Yes, NSA, we're watching you too.

matre days rapid (r)evolution dna advances (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293697)

r(r)eda thanks moms. creation is so sleek, meeting our needs without us even having to ask... more new clear options on the way... what a gig

Malicious foreign actor (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293703)

The best description of NSA and GHCQ to date.

You don't get it yet, do you? (3, Insightful)

msobkow (48369) | about 5 months ago | (#46293745)

Anybody could be a terrorist if global pressures, governmental stupidity, and corporate greed cause them to snap.

Anybody.

So they're not "exceeding their mandate." You just don't realize that even John Q. Milquetoast is a potential terrorist.

Re:You don't get it yet, do you? (1)

MRe_nl (306212) | about 5 months ago | (#46293905)

Nobody is a terrorist. Terrorism is a tactic. It's like calling the Nazis "Blitzkriegers" or the WW II Americans "Island hoppers" (or "Nukers" if you will). States/Organizations/People use terror as a tool to reach their objective. Terror is not the objective. Using such a blanket term is, in my opinion, just a sign of intellectual laziness and will bring us no closer to solutions. It leads to a lack of understanding of the base motivation for conflict.

Re:You don't get it yet, do you? (1)

ledow (319597) | about 5 months ago | (#46294677)

By a certain definition, the War On Terror was - itself - terrorism. It's purpose was basically stated as making "terrorism" so scary to contemplate based on a threat of violence and economic destruction, that people wouldn't do it.

It "worked" (for a certain definition of that word) only because the majority of places decided not to stand against the biggest guy in the room. That works only until those places change their mind, get together, or that guy isn't so big any more. Did it stop the overall existence of terrorism? Not really. We just haven't had a similar scale of it recently, that's all.

Think "Swordfish". All it does is escalate the terrorism into meta-terrorism and meta-meta-terrorism. Like an argument with your kid brother - left unsupervised it'll turn to blows, which will be reciprocated until someone is so hurt they are afraid to fight back because it'll hurt more (until... well... they see a weak spot, or decide it doesn't hurt as much as it used to, etc.).

Terrorists aren't a "thing". They don't have a little Terrorist gene that switches on at puberty. They don't come from certain ethnic minorities or religions. They don't live in certain countries or use certain tactics.

Terrorism is a type of threat. Anyone can make such a threat, or receive it. Give me your wallet or I'll punch you is "terrorism".

As such, the War on Terror was even more laughable (if such a stupidly huge impact on the world can be considered laughable at all). It's like having a war on naughtiness. Or even a war on wars.

The Dambusters could be construed as terrorists.
The D-Day landers.
Even the planes that dropped propoganda into Nazi Germany to scare people into submission.

It all very much depends which side of the terror you are on. And the problem is that EVERYONE always thinks they are on the "right" side, even of their own terrorism.

And yet , its the US govt that finances and trains (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46294373)

terrorists, and has been doing so for decades. Maybe they just hate the competition.

Re:And yet , its the US govt that finances and tra (1)

guruevi (827432) | about 5 months ago | (#46294477)

It's a business model. Spend war money to train terrorists, then ask for and spend more war money to eradicate terrorists in a way that breeds more terrorists. Vicious cycle, more money gets perpetually sent towards the businesses that profit from war.

100% BULLSHIT SUMMARY (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46293907)

Read the post and you can see the flaming arse that wrote this has an agenda.

It is 100% false that "millions of people who merely read the WikiLeaks website" are being targeted.

Another typical slashcrap report.

Re:100% BULLSHIT SUMMARY (1)

ledow (319597) | about 5 months ago | (#46294753)

Depends on what you mean by targeted.

Was their data concerning a website they visited collected without their knowledge? If the article is right, almost certainly.

Was it analysed? Probably.

Were people then sneaking into the back garden going through their trash looking for Julian Assange? Probably not.

Nobody is saying that millions of people were observed to any great detail. What we're saying is that GCHQ et al were looking at data sent by visitors to a particular website covertly. All visitors. Foreign and domestic. Without their knowledge.

If I did that, it'd be a breach of the Data Protection Act at the very minimum. Apparently they are "allowed" to, whether officially or not. But it's pretty certain that they intercepted data intended for a sensitive website without the website/viewers consent.

How much of a problem that is is a matter of interpretation.

If nothing else, this just adds more weight to the "let's anonymise, encrypt and obscure everything" argument.

NSA Shill at work. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46335691)

Yet another A.C. Troll maintaining deniabilty. [slashdot.org]

Hi GCHQ (1)

ledow (319597) | about 5 months ago | (#46293935)

I'm almost certainly on one of their lists somewhere then. Makes me feel kinda important.

- Mathematician and computer scientist.
- Special personal interest in cryptography, peer-to-peer networking, etc.
- Wikileaks visitor back in the early days. Not since the Julian Assange junk, though, it has to be said. Can't stand the guy.
- I keep looking at MI5 / GCHQ jobs in the papers and on their website, and their online competitions, but far too peace-loving to actually apply to be one of them. That's gotta flag me for something, surely.
- User of Tor, Bittorrent, Bitcoin, etc.
- Anti-war.
- Like to speak my mind on subjects like the treatment of Turing, why we deal with terrorists so stupidly (what we do that's stupid, what we don't do that's more sensible, and how a dedicated terrorist with the slightest bit of brain could do something much more scary and much more easily than trying to smuggle explosive liquids onto a plane), why America still has people in Guantanamo Bay without fair trial, etc.
- Reader of Bruce Schneier, etc.
- Always telling people about my mad father-in-law who's worked in Kuwait, the US, etc. and somehow manages to get thrown out of every country he goes to (hint: It's not advised to start a ballroom dancing class in a country where women and men aren't allowed to touch).

If they are even bothering to look at who goes on Wikileaks, I must have at least a little log file with some of my online movements in it somewhere for all of the above, surely. Gosh. I feel privileged. Wonder if anyone has even done background checks / political allegiance checks etc. on me.

That said... who cares. It's their job. The fact that I even KNOW about it (or the EFF does) means that they are more shit at it than they should be.

Re:Hi GCHQ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46294381)

Sure I agree with you. I'm probably also on all sorts of lists. Like most of us. Problem is that for some with your qualifications the GCHQ or some other agency is installing spyware on computers. For example Belgacom employees and recently Jean-Jacques Quisquater, professor in cryptography, where our Belgan secret services had to tip off the guy about it and aided in removing it. This is not ok anymore and it's most definitely a clear violation of privacy rights. You think the agents who did this clear and blatant violation are being punished for this? Forget it. You think any financial compensation is being offered to the people whom privacy has been violated? Forget it. Is it a human rights violation? Yes.

Re:Hi GCHQ (1)

ledow (319597) | about 5 months ago | (#46294587)

So is Guantanamo Bay. Quite clearly and obviously.

The question (which has no answer for the likes of you and me) is: What the hell do you expect others to do about it?

Read the next paragraph about Guantanamo, or about spying privacy violations. Tell me where it would differ:

"For sure, I hoped my country would at least condemn such actions. They didn't. Wars have been started over less. Nothing happened. We've sanctioned countries because of less. No such thing occurred. 'We' got it onto the news, into other media, made people aware. Still going on. The people protested about it. No change in legislation or international relations. It's been a long time since the initial news broke. Still happening, just the same."

So what's the difference? I can protest. I can complain to an MP. I can make a fuss and get in the news. But, to be honest, what precisely is going to make a government stop such things? Nothing at the moment. If these revelations aren't big enough to cause turbulence in international watchdogs, the UN, our allies, etc. then what would be?

Fact is, all I can do is whinge about it. Hell, even if they target me specifically, there's almost nothing I can do and I'd have to be just about the most superhuman person to come out the other end as a victor, having escaped their clutches, shown them up in the media, proven that they acted without cause, and won the majority of the populous to my side etc.

There is no solution that does not involve creating an entity with even more power, even more secrecy that's even less accountable.

Re:Hi GCHQ (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 6 months ago | (#46300843)

At the end you basically get the Church report.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C... [wikipedia.org]
Jimmy Carter’s forgotten history lesson
http://www.salon.com/2013/07/1... [salon.com]
"....President Carter attempted to clean up the CIA, firing almost 20 percent of its employees...."
The good news in 2014 is more people using the web, in the wider press now understand more about aspects of crypto and the reality of the "keys" over time too:
"Judges Poised to Hand U.S. Spies the Keys to the Internet" (02.03.14)
http://www.wired.com/threatlev... [wired.com]
Welcome to digital East Germany :)

Why don't they just classify them as terrorists... (1)

gebbeth (720597) | about 5 months ago | (#46294057)

Then they can bomb them out of existence.

GHCQ? (1)

oodaloop (1229816) | about 5 months ago | (#46294171)

TFT says GHCQ, but TFS accurately says GCHQ. I'm surprised no one else noticed.

They do this for a number of sites (2)

EngineeringStudent (3003337) | about 5 months ago | (#46294457)

They don't like wikileaks, or its peers. They also track things like visits to cryptome. They look for risk by people who go to sites that teach the substance of the anarchists cookbook. There are "finger-prints" or eigenvectors of site visitation that they associate with higher and lower risk. If you visit sites a,b, and c, then you are just a harmless teenager making a prank. If you visit sites a, b, not-c, and d, then you might be a threat.

You aren't suprised that the evil empire doesn't like that Snowden aired its laundry, are you? This is the entirely expectable reactive reaction to attempt to "close the barn door". These folks have not read "Godel, Escher, Bach" and understood that the system of themselves is a "sufficiently complex one" and there are axiomatic holes. Either they have to refute the fundamentals of the fundamentals of mathematics - things that drive why 1+1 actually equals 2, or they have to deny they are sufficiently complex, or they have to have a non-lawyers approach to the problem. Their boss and his appointees are lawyers - they can't step outside that box, so they can't actually plug the holes, but they can make a plausible case before a jury of technical idiots that the holes are closed. Sad. Expectable.

A better question is the cadence of the next disclosure. There is a cyclicity to the phenomena. They haven't asked why, because they haven't spent much time looking at cyclicity.

And yet these folks are given trillions of dollars and tasked with the responsibility of keeping the world a good place and making it a better, healthier, more life-full place. Irony. That right there, is irony.

OMG PONIES! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46294723)

They don't like wikileaks, or its peers. They also track things like visits to cryptome. They look for risk by people who go to sites that teach the substance of the anarchists cookbook. There are "finger-prints" or eigenvectors of site visitation that they associate with higher and lower risk. If you visit sites a,b, and c, then you are just a harmless teenager making a prank. If you visit sites a, b, not-c, and d, then you might be a threat.

Even ... OMG PONIES (Page 32.)

Actually, if you poke at the publication dates of any of the surviving YouTube entries (upper right) with the date at which an AAA game was released (speculation based on the number of platforms in the lower right), you could probably figure out the date the author used when punching in the query to retrieve the displayed data, and what event happened that day to cause a spike in brony-related traffic.

(Of all the places I least expected to see EqD... Hat tip to an author with an unintentional sense of humor :)

Journalist and NSA both have N in them! (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 5 months ago | (#46294765)

The NSA...asked other governments without First Amendment protections to prosecute journalists?

Ummm, I want someone to go to jail, but it sure as hell ain't journalists.

National security threat lol (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46294919)

Why wouldn't they keep tabs on visitors since wikileaks poses a threat to national security.

Hmmm ... (1)

Rambo Tribble (1273454) | about 5 months ago | (#46294925)

... does this mean a DDoS attack on Wikileaks would leave the spooks chasing their own tails?

Out the NSA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46296949)

Someone needs to make a site that outs and tracks every employee of the NSA. I bet they would like that.

Well, that would make it prosecution time (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46297489)

I really now EXPECT to see those responsible for this criminal behaviour facing their day in court. This is clearly illegal by and standards, and undermines the whole foundations of British democracy. I still hold some hope that their is enough of a democratic system left in Britain, to deal with the perpetrators of these crimes. This is a hope I sadly don't hold for American citizens, given the pathetic state of the regime there. If the British police do not act against these criminals, then it will be clear evidence that the police and judiciary are either suffering corrupt, or completely subservient to a powerful and corrupt regime, that is an enemy of the British people. The scene is now set for a significant and important trial. If government ministers knew about these crimes, then they should resign immediately, and offer their apologies. It is wholly unacceptable, that any democratic government, should be spying on the habits of their own citizens, particularly with regards to viewing materials, such as those posted on Wikileaks, which have played an important part in revealing the depth and breadth of criminality in important parts of the state security apparatus. Obviously, the institutions responsible, must now be disbanded, and reformed from scratch. New leadership is needed. Leadership that will respect the rule of law. Leadership that believes in the rights of its own citizens. What has happened within the security apparatus of the United States and Britain, is on par with a terrorist attack on our countries. It completely undermines the right to a free society. Using 'terrorism' as an excuse is pathetic. If 'terrorism' is the reason for these crimes, then the terrorists have already won. They have succeeded in destroying our democracy, and in the process, have created a new enemy - our own apparatus of state - an enemy far more powerful, better resourced, more ruthless, and more underhanded, than any terrorist. Most terrorists are pathetic religious fundamentalist halfwits, who pray on primitive fears. The state is behaving in a similar way. It is praying on fears to justify its ends. It is persecuting those who stand up to its repression. Today, I am ashamed to be British.

Fuck Beta (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46299295)

Dammit, boycotted for ten days. Came back. Rolled Beta. Fucking Arrrg. At least adding it to host files made it go classic. Dice is not listening. Been here since chips and dips. When beta is the only option I'm out for good. Removed my resume from dice for good measure. Killing the golden goose. Short-sighted mba fucks.

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