Posts Tagged ‘database’
Bruce Schneier | Security | 03.25.15 | 4:22 pm
A Must Read From wired.com:
The first news story to break based on the Snowden documents described how the NSA collects the cell phone call records of every American. One government defense,…the data they collected is “only metadata.”
This seemed to mollify many people, but it shouldn’t have. Collecting metadata on people means putting them under surveillance.
Imagine that you hired a private detective to eavesdrop on someone… Now imagine that you asked the detective to put that person under surveillance. Eavesdropping gets you the conversations; surveillance gets you everything else.
As former NSA General Counsel Stewart Baker said: “Metadata absolutely tells you everything about somebody’s life. If you have enough metadata you don’t really need content.” In 2014, former NSA and CIA director Michael Hayden remarked: “We kill people based on metadata.”
One experiment from Stanford University examined the phone metadata of about 500 volunteers over several months. The personal nature of what the researchers could deduce from the metadata surprised even them, and the report is worth quoting:
Participant A communicated with multiple local neurology groups, a specialty pharmacy, a rare condition management service, and a hotline for a pharmaceutical used solely to treat relapsing multiple sclerosis.
Participant B spoke at length with cardiologists at a major medical center, talked briefly with a medical laboratory, received calls from a pharmacy, and placed short calls to a home reporting hotline for a medical device used to monitor cardiac arrhythmia.
Participant C made a number of calls to a firearms store that specializes in the AR semiautomatic rifle platform. They also spoke at length with customer service for a firearm manufacturer that produces an AR line.
In a span of three weeks, Participant D contacted a home improvement store, locksmiths, a hydroponics dealer, and a head shop.
Participant E had a long early morning call with her sister. Two days later, she placed a series of calls to the local Planned Parenthood location. She placed brief additional calls two weeks later, and made a final call a month after.
That’s a multiple sclerosis sufferer, a heart attack victim, a semiautomatic weapons owner, a home marijuana grower, and someone who had an abortion, all from a single stream of metadata.
Web search data is another source of intimate information that can be used for surveillance. … Google’s CEO Eric Schmidt admitted as much in 2010: “We know where you are. We know where you’ve been. We can more or less know what you’re thinking about.”
Written by bothernews
March 25, 2015 at 11:40 pm
Tagged with American, CIA, corporation, Data, database, Google, government, metadata, Michael Hayden, National Security Agency, NSA, NSA electronic surveillance program, private detective, Stanford University, Stewart Baker, surveillance