Big Brother Wants Your Email Access
A disturbing report via National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell says Big Brother (that’s the US government and its NSA if you haven’t been keeping up) wants access to any email, file transfer and Web search. Their main ally so far in the security game: AT&T.
This Raw Story article points to an article in the print edition of the New Yorker and a pdf file from the Wall Street Journal that outlines McConnell’s plan, prompted by the Bush Administration, to whittle down access point from thousands to fifty. This will include email and Web searches from Google and other search engines.
According to McConnell, warrantless wiretapping will look like "a walk in the park" compared to drafted plans to gain access to all the information floating across the Internet backbone.
"The infrastructure to tap into Americans’ email and web search history may already be in place," reads the Raw Story report.
And telecommunications giant AT&T is one of the chief co-conspirators in developing that infrastructure, allowing the NSA to set up secret rooms to copy information coming across AT&T’s network, foreign or domestic.
"…we’re talking about phone conversations, email web browsing, everything that goes across the Internet," said Mark Klein, whistleblower and retired AT&T technician who helped make it possible for the NSA to spy on Americans.
Klein also says AT&T has similar operations at 20 sites throughout the States.
Disturbing as that is, it also brings into question the Bush Administration’s (and agencies like the FCC) reluctance to hold AT&T accountable to anything that might be considered pro-consumer like Network Neutrality or open mobile networks. If the Administration was too heavy-handed with the telco, it may be less willing to hand over "vital" national security information without a fight.