An ultra-secret computer surveillance system, called XKeyscore, allows the US National Security Agency (NSA) to spy on email, e-mail, browsing and search history for millions of dollars without a warrant. ‘people.
The existence of this tool for large-scale surveillance of US intelligence services was revealed Wednesday by the British daily The Guardian from documents unveiled by former CIA analyst Edward Snowden .
XKeyscore is the largest computer monitoring system available to the NSA, the documents say.
Everything a person does on the Internet
According to training materials for the XKeyscore system obtained by the daily newspaper, the system operator can access the contents of a person’s e-mails, the history of the sites he visited and the research he has done on the Internet. In short, virtually everything an individual does on the Internet.
The system also allows real-time monitoring of users. All, unbeknownst to the person being watched.
To access this huge database, says The Guardian , an analyst at the NSA does not need any prior authorization from a judge or a superior. All he has to do is complete an online form and tick a list of why he is doing this monitoring.
These new revelations support the statements of Edward Snowden, who detailed, in an interview, the capacity of the US secret services.
I could just sit at my desk and monitor the online conversations of anyone, you, your accountant, a federal judge or even the president if I have a personal email address.
Edward Snowden, in a video posted by The Guardian
A breach of US laws
According to the American law, it is necessary to obtain a mandate to practice the surveillance of a US citizen and to intercept his private communications.
However, it is not mandatory to obtain a warrant to monitor the communications of Americans with persons abroad.
However, XKeyscore would have the ability to monitor the Internet of Americans as well as foreigners, and this without a warrant.
According to the training document leaked by Edward Snowden, the XKeyscore system would have captured 300 terrorists worldwide since 2008.
The NSA justifies the use of XKeyscore
The NSA reacted to the publication of this information in a statement to the Guardian . The intelligence agency says its surveillance activities target only very specific targets, overseas, that pose threats. She reiterates that she does not do large-scale surveillance at random.
The agency adds that each of its research can be audited to ensure that it complies with the law.
The NSA says it’s about the security of the United States and US troops abroad.
Snowden still stuck at Moscow airport
These new revelations come as former NSA analyst Edward Snowden is still in Russia at Moscow airport , where he is seeking political asylum in a country that would like to welcome him.
Wanted by US authorities for espionage, Edward Snowden has been stuck since June 23 in the transit area of Moscow-Sheremetyevo Airport.
He formally applied for temporary asylum in Russia because he could not join Venezuela, Nicaragua or Bolivia, who had declared themselves ready to receive him.
Edward Snowden is behind the Washington Post and Guardian’s revelations about the existence of two secret programs of the National Security Agency (NSA).
The first concerns the collection of telephone data in the United States by the Verizon operator . The second, called PRISM (New Window) , targets the most important e-mail and social networking services.
The White House, which defends these citizen surveillance activities, explained that these controversial programs were aimed at fighting terrorism.
However, other information provided by Edward Snowden revealed that Washington also used these systems to spy on foreign governments, including those of its allies.
Dean Prust was a reporter for Nebula Electronics, before becoming the lead editor. Dominic has over fifty bylines and has reported on countless stories concerning all things related to technology. Dean studied at Caltech.