NSA

Apple joins major U.S. tech giants in NSA surveillance reform push

The U.S. government’s mass-scale surveillance program which has compromised the security and privacy of millions of domestic and foreign online users, the secret PRISM initiative, did not sit well with Apple and other technology giants. In response to the scandalous revelations by the NSA contractor Edward Snowden that also put the blame on Silicon Valley giants for bowing to NSA’s request and providing the agency with hassle-free access to its users’ data, the iPhone maker chastised the practice and published how it handles government requests to give up private information belonging to its users.

And now, in the aftermath of the ongoing snooping scare, The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Apple along with seven other U.S. technology giants is making a joint appeal to reform government surveillance activities…

Apple joins Google and others supporting call for NSA and FBI transparency

Apple has joined with a number of other technology firms, including Google and Microsoft, supporting legislation in the U.S. House and Senate loosening restrictions on divulging national security requests. A letter from the Center for Democracy and Technology asks Congress to approve two bills aimed at letting tech companies reveal how many national security requests they receive.

The iPhone maker has publicly denied assisting NSA’s PRISM program for tracking Internet use, but is unable to be more transparent with concerned customers. Along with Apple, Google, Microsoft, Facebook and Yahoo are also suing the government, charging the restrictions on disclosure violate their right to free speech…

NSA slides: Steve Jobs is Big Brother, Apple users are ‘zombies’

In case you missed our Sunday coverage of the newly exposed NSA tactics, the snooping agency – thanks to its secret 10-year initiative code-named Bullrun which runs at $250 million a year – has been able to successfully crack much of the Internet’s widely-used encryption technologies to compromise everyone’s online communications, banking transactions and other sensitive data.

And now, internal NSA slides from a 2010 report titled ‘Exploring Current Trends, Targets and Techniques’ and leaked by the NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden shamefully depict iPhone customers as ‘zombies’. As if that weren’t enough, in a reference to the George Orwell book ‘1984’ Steve Jobs himself is being portrayed as Big Brother…

NSA can hijack ‘most sensitive data’ on your iPhone, top secret files reveal

The U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) has pretty much compromised every online user’s security through a previously unknown ten-year program against encryption technologies that made “vast amounts” of collected data “exploitable.”

After these shocking revelations came to light Thursday, a new report Sunday in German news weekly Der Spiegel has given the privacy scare a whole new meaning.

See, owners of iPhone, BlackBerry and Android devices are at risk of their “most sensitive data” being fully exploitable because the NSA is able to crack protective measures of these systems, previously believed to be highly secure…

President Obama outlines four government surveillance reform initiatives

Following a series of meetings with tech executives a government leaders this week, President Obama held a press conference this morning to describe his plan to assuage concerns among Americans and foreigners regarding the legality of US surveillance activities.

During his speech, the President said that the surveillance programs in use by government agencies right now are “operating in a way that prevents abuse.” But the question for his administration, he posed, is how does it make “American people more comfortable?”

So he outlined the following four initiatives…

NSA’s Internet snooping covers ‘nearly everything’ done online via XKeyscore app

The men and women of the U.S. National Security Agency are very interested in your Internet activity. Indeed, a program within the NSA allows intelligence analysts to sift through billions of online records, revealing “nearly everything a typical user does on the Internet.”

While Apple has denied it assists the intelligence agency with tracking the Internet use of consumers, the NSA’s XKeyscore program can search your emails, chat logs, web history – even your Facebook activity in real time, The Guardian newspaper reports Wednesday…

US government gets approval to continue tracking phone records

In June, an order granted by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to the FBI leaked, revealing that Verizon was handing over millions of private telephone records to the US government. Of course, we later found out that it wasn’t just Verizon giving up user data.

As you may have known, that court order was set to expire today, meaning that the government would no longer be authorized to collect such records. But according to the office of the Director of National Intelligence, FISA has just renewed its authorization…

Apple joins alliance of tech companies in push for better NSA transparency

Apple is reportedly teaming up with Google, Facebook, Microsoft and a number of other tech companies that will demand dramatically increased transparency from the US government regarding surveillance by the NSA and other agencies.

In a letter to be published tomorrow, the alliance—which includes 63 companies, investors, and non-profit orgs—will call upon President Obama and congressional leaders to allow them to report more specifically on security requests…

Pirate Bay co-founder touts ‘secret’ messaging app

So, you want to order a pizza or text sweet nothings to your significant other without the NSA listening? The co-founder of The Pirate Bay, known for swapping illicit copies of movies and software, has a secret – literally. Peter Sunde is raising funds for Hemlis (Swedish for “secret”), a new kind of messaging app for iOS and Android he and his team are working on. They boldly claim the software is designed to keep out the most prying eyes, such as those from the U.S. government’s PRISM program…

Apple and Tim Cook getting sued over NSA’s PRISM intelligence program

The controversy over National Security Agency data mining isn’t going away anytime soon. As you know, the scandal blew up when it was discovered that the government issued a secret order to Verizon Business Network Services to provide the NSA with logs for millions of calls on an ongoing daily basis.

Numerous lawsuits are being announced with each passing day and some have already been filed. For example, the American Civil Liberties Union has filed a lawsuit and Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) said he will sue the Obama administration over the “unconstitutional” PRISM surveillance programs.

And now, an activist group is suing Apple and Tim Cook, as well as Facebook, Google, YouTube, Skype, AT&T, Sprint, Yahoo, Microsoft, PalTalk, AOL, the NSA and its Director Keith Alexander, President Obama himself and Attorney General Eric Holder over participating in the government’s secret Big Brother initiative…