Prism, the NSA in the cloud

. lecture : 2 minutes
NSA headquarters, Wikipedia
NSA headquarters, wikipedia picture

By now you must've heard about Prism, a formerly classified NSA program that, according to the Guardian and The Washington Post, gave them an unlimited and direct access to people's files stored at Google, Apple, Microsoft…

This news came to light days after it was revealed that telecom operator Verizon had a similar arrangement to give the US government access to the calls' metadata (not the calls themselves, apparently), all without any warrants or court orders.

While president Obama confirmed the existence of the program, mentioning "modest encroachments on privacy" and that the US Congress was briefed on the subject, all the tech companies mentioned by both newspapers have strongly denied any involvement.

A slide from the PowerPoint on Prism
slide from the prism powerpoint

The whistleblower who leaked the story to the press is Edward Snowden, a 29-year-old NSA contractor and ex-CIA employee, who asked the Guardian to reveal his name. Edward has left is family, his career and his house to hide in Hong-Kong.

I have no intention of hiding who I am because I know I have done nothing wrong.

Edward Snowden in The Guardian

For a depressing look at this story, follow @_nothingtohide on Twitter, an account created by Daniel Sieradski that retweets messages using the "well, if you have nothing to hide" argument.

…I feel sick.