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Thu Jun 27, 2013, 12:11 PM

How the NSA is still harvesting your online data - 1 stream alone processed one trillion records

How the NSA is still harvesting your online data

Files show vast scale of current NSA metadata programs, with one stream alone celebrating 'one trillion records processed'

Glenn Greenwald and Spencer Ackerman
guardian.co.uk, Thursday 27 June 2013 16.03 BST


The NSA collects and analyzes significant amounts of data from US communications systems in the course of monitoring foreign targets. Photograph: guardian.co.uk

A review of top-secret NSA documents suggests that the surveillance agency still collects and sifts through large quantities of Americans' online data despite the Obama administration's insistence that the program that began under Bush ended in 2011.

...

On December 26 2012, SSO announced what it described as a new capability to allow it to collect far more internet traffic and data than ever before. With this new system, the NSA is able to direct more than half of the internet traffic it intercepts from its collection points into its own repositories. One end of the communications collected are inside the United States.

The NSA called it the "One-End Foreign (1EF) solution". It intended the program, codenamed EvilOlive, for "broadening the scope" of what it is able to collect. It relied, legally, on "FAA Authority", a reference to the 2008 Fisa Amendments Act that relaxed surveillance restrictions.

This new system, SSO stated in December, enables vastly increased collection by the NSA of internet traffic. "The 1EF solution is allowing more than 75% of the traffic to pass through the filter," the SSO December document reads. "This milestone not only opened the aperture of the access but allowed the possibility for more traffic to be identified, selected and forwarded to NSA repositories." It continued: "After the EvilOlive deployment, traffic has literally doubled."

...

On December 31, 2012, an SSO official wrote that ShellTrumpet had just "processed its One Trillionth metadata record".

...

An SSO entry dated September 21, 2012, announced that "Transient Thurible, a new Government Communications Head Quarters (GCHQ) managed XKeyScore (XKS) Deep Dive was declared operational." The entry states that GCHQ "modified" an existing program so the NSA could "benefit" from what GCHQ harvested.

...

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/27/nsa-online-metadata-collection

34 replies, 3915 views

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Reply How the NSA is still harvesting your online data - 1 stream alone processed one trillion records (Original post)
Catherina Jun 2013 OP
Recursion Jun 2013 #1
Catherina Jun 2013 #2
Recursion Jun 2013 #4
Catherina Jun 2013 #5
randome Jun 2013 #12
Recursion Jun 2013 #13
KoKo Jun 2013 #34
KoKo Jun 2013 #31
Recursion Jun 2013 #33
nadinbrzezinski Jun 2013 #3
Catherina Jun 2013 #6
nadinbrzezinski Jun 2013 #7
dkf Jun 2013 #8
randome Jun 2013 #9
Tierra_y_Libertad Jun 2013 #10
Catherina Jun 2013 #29
snooper2 Jun 2013 #11
Recursion Jun 2013 #14
KoKo Jun 2013 #15
marions ghost Jun 2013 #16
KoKo Jun 2013 #17
marions ghost Jun 2013 #21
KoKo Jun 2013 #18
marions ghost Jun 2013 #19
KoKo Jun 2013 #23
marions ghost Jun 2013 #24
marions ghost Jun 2013 #25
WillyT Jun 2013 #20
marions ghost Jun 2013 #22
Hissyspit Jun 2013 #26
woo me with science Jun 2013 #27
marions ghost Jun 2013 #28
sibelian Jun 2013 #30
KoKo Jun 2013 #32

Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 12:12 PM

1. So what's the process of identification, selection, and forwarding?

That's what makes the difference between this being a great idea and a horrible idea.

(And, yes, I know we don't know, and I think we should.)

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Response to Recursion (Reply #1)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 12:19 PM

2. You answered our own question

I think we'll find out soon.

My guess is there's not much of a process. NSA and GCHQ employees are physically working together under the same roof in several of the same intercept sites, Menwith Hill being the main one. One big happy party dumping into and pulling from the same databases.

But, as someone in the Guardian comments pointed out, maybe people are over-reacting and it's all good

"Ok - so the NSA is still harvesting our data. But that does not mean that the NSA is harvesting our data for the same reasons as before. Perhaps the NSA is harvesting our data to figure out who has various material needs; then, in secret, they will deliver food, furniture, medicine, etc., to suffering people."


I really want to laugh at that funny comment but I just can't right now.

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Response to Catherina (Reply #2)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 12:23 PM

4. I will grant you that the GCHQ revelations are the worst thing I've heard in this mess

If they are true, heads need to roll. Though I give some props to the cleverness of the loophole: "we're spying on a foreign entity that is spying on US citizens..."

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Response to Recursion (Reply #4)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 12:34 PM

5. I give them even more props for

the cleverness of the loophole: "we're not spying on our own citizens" just getting that data from our partners.

This is all so sad. the 9-11 affair did so much harm to our country that I don't know how or if we'll be able to undo it.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #4)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 01:08 PM

12. Here is the GCHQ web site. See if you can make anything out of it. Not sure I can.

 

http://www.gchq.gov.uk/Pages/homepage.aspx

[hr]
[font color="blue"][center]I'm always right. When I'm wrong I admit it.
So then I'm right about being wrong.
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Response to randome (Reply #12)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 01:09 PM

13. It's their analogue to the NSA, with more HUMINT capabilities

And a limited charter for domestic surveillance.

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Response to randome (Reply #12)

Sun Jun 30, 2013, 09:48 AM

34. I notice they have "vacancies"....I didn't check to see the qualifications...

I really didn't want to click in there, frankly. But, it might be interesting for someone else to do...if they have high encryption.

Who they hire and the controls they have on access and the employee would be interesting to know, also.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #4)

Sat Jun 29, 2013, 08:56 PM

31. So...what concerns you the most about the newest revelations...

If you could do a "Bullet Point" ...what would it be that you could agree with the concerns of the rest of us who are alarmed at what we see as a huge intrusion into our Private Life...and a BIG STEP TOO FAR...

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Response to KoKo (Reply #31)

Sat Jun 29, 2013, 10:32 PM

33. It involves unrestricted NSA access to phone calls and net traffic

I don't see how others don't see this as a problem

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 12:22 PM

3. Ergo why they need that tiny data center, with a single tower,

 

At Utah

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #3)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 12:36 PM

6. Billions! Trillions for that! But not a penny for schools or their social security debts

That tiny tiny data center in Utah lol

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Response to Catherina (Reply #6)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 12:39 PM

7. But, it's tiny

 



I know...this is why Empires always rot from the inside.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 12:44 PM

8. Bingo re: UK capture.

 

Now they can say they aren't doing it, the Brits are. It's like being the lookout guy...didn't actually steal anything.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 12:47 PM

9. "One-End Foreign (1EF) solution".

 

So this still requires one end of the communication to be in a foreign country, right?

And "On December 26 2012, SSO announced..." Doesn't sound like they tried to keep it secret.

[hr]
[font color="blue"][center]I'm always right. When I'm wrong I admit it.
So then I'm right about being wrong.
[/center][/font]
[hr]

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 12:52 PM

10. And, it does wonders for foreign relations, they love being spied on.

 

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Response to Tierra_y_Libertad (Reply #10)

Fri Jun 28, 2013, 10:26 AM

29. This thing is just growing. Tip of the iceberg. From your link

According to media reports, neither the German government nor the country's foreign intelligence service, the BND, was apparently aware of the British surveillance operation, dubbed "Tempora," which was reportedly made possible with the cooperation of two telecommunications companies: Vodafone and British telecoms giant BT. Vodafone released a statement saying it abides by the laws of the countries in which it operates, but it declined to give further information, citing "national security." BT has refused to comment.

http://www.spiegel.de/international/german-press-reactions-to-tempora-data-surveillance-scandal-a-907720.html

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 12:59 PM

11. Is a picture of a RDF schema the scariest thing they could find

 

LOL


"While there is no reference to any specific program currently collecting purely domestic internet metadata in bulk, it is clear that the agency collects and analyzes significant amounts of data from US communications systems in the course of monitoring foreign targets."

That was hard for them to add to the article I bet LOL.



If it's "clear" why don't they just release the "secret" docs? What's the problem?
We have to rely on their biased interpretations?

An intelligent person would assume the NSA and/or CIA have been looking at Internet traffic coming from States of interest. Still waiting for the big shoe to drop.

"They reading all my mail, they are putting a profile of every American together to blackmail us from going to OWS park! The can tap my phone call instantly!" I guess we will keep waiting-

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Response to snooper2 (Reply #11)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 01:09 PM

14. Yeah, I was wondering about that too.

I'm writing an SGML parser right now; if they really want scary they should have used that...

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 01:10 PM

15. I wonder about the Business Commerce aspects of this.

Say you are a small US Company that does work with Foreign Companies. You do SKYP's with clients because it's cheaper for small company than paying for the travel expenses to send someone over to do negotiations. You use e-mail, have a website that advertises your business and are on Linked In and also use Webinars to release information to selected clients.

There's no way you know if someone on a Government's "watch list" might decide to send you an inquiry on Linked In, or perhaps send an E-Mail to your website inquiring about a product or further information on the services you provide. Say you do a Webinar and invite people from around the world to sign up for it...or do a Skype with a small group of investors. If any of these people you interact with are on a "watch list" doesn't that mean that you by default are being monitored? And, what if if that information on you and your company could be shared by a Private Contractor monitoring your communications with a Competitor along with NSA or Security in another Government? Private Contractor can share information with whomever they wish along with collecting fees from Government Security interests.

This could be devastating for commerce and particularly Small Business because they can't afford to employ high tech security people to debug their systems constantly. And, if it's going on it would mean that Large Companies have a definite advantage these days (even though they are probably being monitored, too...even with all their supposed fancy debugging).

This has huge implications beyond spying on average citizens.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 01:11 PM

16. EvilOlive and her friends:



It continued: "After the EvilOlive deployment, traffic has literally doubled." (snip) This new system, SSO stated in December, enables vastly increased collection by the NSA of internet traffic.

The scale of the NSA's metadata collection is highlighted by references in the documents to another NSA program, codenamed ShellTrumpet.

On December 31, 2012, an SSO official wrote that ShellTrumpet had just "processed its One Trillionth metadata record". It is not clear how much of this collection concerns foreigners' online records and how much concerns those of Americans. Also unclear is the claimed legal authority for this collection.

Explaining that the five-year old program "began as a near-real-time metadata analyzer for a classic collection system", the SSO official noted: "In its five year history, numerous other systems from across the Agency have come to use ShellTrumpet's processing capabilities for performance monitoring" and other tasks, such as "direct email tip alerting."

Another SSO entry, dated February 6, 2013, described ongoing plans to expand metadata collection. A joint surveillance collection operation with an unnamed partner agency yielded a new program "to query metadata" that was "turned on in the Fall 2012". Two others, called MoonLightPath and Spinneret, "are planned to be added by September 2013."

An SSO entry dated September 21, 2012, announced that "Transient Thurible, a new Government Communications Head Quarters (GCHQ) managed XKeyScore (XKS) Deep Dive was declared operational." The entry states that GCHQ "modified" an existing program so the NSA could "benefit" from what GCHQ harvested.

"Transient Thurible
metadata [has been] flowing into NSA repositories since 13 August 2012," the entry states.

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Response to marions ghost (Reply #16)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 01:32 PM

17. You are not gonna believe this...BUT...

I was just getting ready to post this and hit reload and you already had close to the same thing! What the heck could those names mean? CREEPY...like some kind of mad scheme from a bad spy novel.

Here was my post:

EvilOlive, ShellTrumpet, MoonLightPath, Spinneret, Deep Dive--WTF?

---------

It continued: "After the EvilOlive deployment, traffic has literally doubled."

The scale of the NSA's metadata collection is highlighted by references in the documents to another NSA program, codenamed ShellTrumpet.

On December 31, 2012, an SSO official wrote that ShellTrumpet had just "processed its One Trillionth metadata record".
It is not clear how much of this collection concerns foreigners' online records and how much concerns those of Americans. Also unclear is the claimed legal authority for this collection.

-----------

Another SSO entry, dated February 6, 2013, described ongoing plans to expand metadata collection. A joint surveillance collection operation with an unnamed partner agency yielded a new program "to query metadata" that was "turned on in the Fall 2012". Two others, called MoonLightPath and Spinneret, "are planned to be added by September 2013."

An SSO entry dated September 21, 2012, announced that "Transient Thurible, a new Government Communications Head Quarters (GCHQ) managed XKeyScore (XKS) Deep Dive was declared operational." The entry states that GCHQ "modified" an existing program so the NSA could "benefit" from what GCHQ harvested.

"Transient Thurible metadata [has been] flowing into NSA repositories since 13 August 2012," the entry states.

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Response to KoKo (Reply #17)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 03:03 PM

21. We think alike

yeah my "creepy" alarm went off too...

EvilOlive fascinates me...





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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 01:45 PM

18. A "THURIBLE:" from Greek thyos--burning incense, sacrifice

So...what would Operation "Transient Thurible" mean in Data Collection Terms?



--------------

thurible (religious object) -- Encyclopedia Britannica
thurible, also called censer, vessel used in the Christian liturgy for the burning of aromatic incense strewn on lighted coals. Censers of terra-cotta or metal were widely used in Egypt, in the ancient Middle Eastern civilizations, including the Jewish, and in the classical world.


britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/594407/thurible More from britannica.com
Thurible - Definition and More from the Free Merriam-Webster ...
Definition of THURIBLE: censer. Origin of THURIBLE. Middle English thurribul, from Latin thuribulum, from thur-, thus incense, from Greek thyos incense, sacrifice, from thyein to sacrifice more at thyme
merriam-webster.com/dictionary/thurible More from merriam-webster.com
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/thurible

Origin of THURIBLE
Middle English thurribul, from Latin thuribulum, from thur-, thus incense, from Greek thyos incense, sacrifice, from thyein to sacrifice more at thyme
First Known Use: 15th century

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Response to KoKo (Reply #18)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 02:34 PM

19. Is it a censer or a censor?

"The priests swing them back and forth 'censing'' things. The Censer is used to bless and purify, the smoke from the incense is believed to carry prayer to heaven."

It swings around and clears the air? Maybe an erasing tool? A censoring tool?

This picture makes me think of the Genie Escaping The Bottle:


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Response to marions ghost (Reply #19)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 03:51 PM

23. Sounds good to me..

Erasing tool and the swinging back and forth (transient?) blessing and purifying and sending it towards Heaven (the Higher Ups).

Agree about "Evil Olive."

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Response to KoKo (Reply #23)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 04:05 PM

24. Heaven = the higher ups

yes, that is how they see themselves:

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Response to marions ghost (Reply #24)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 06:02 PM

25. K&R

--people need to know what the current plans are for tightening these systems.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 02:44 PM

20. K & R !!!

 


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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 03:28 PM

22. K&R

This is what's in store...and what is it for???

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 06:59 PM

26. Kick nt

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 08:07 PM

27. K&R

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2013, 09:50 PM

28. This is important

K&R

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sat Jun 29, 2013, 12:48 AM

30. K+R

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sat Jun 29, 2013, 09:05 PM

32. LOL's...Evil Olive ShellTrumpet, MoonLightPath, Spinneret, and her Friends...sort of got "shut down"


No one was shocked enough...or they already knew...so "no big deal."

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