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Deutsche Telekom Moves Email Traffic In-Country In Wake of PRISM

timothy posted about a year ago | from the anonymity-is-for-crazy-paranoid-people dept.

Communications 180

kdryer39 writes "Germany's leading telecom provider announced on Friday that it will only use German servers to handle any email traffic over its systems, citing privacy concerns arising from the recent PRISM leak and its 'public outrage over U.S. spy programs accessing citizens' private messages.' In a related move, DT has also announced that they will be providing email services over SSL to further secure their customers' communications. Sandro Gaycken, a professor of cyber security at Berlin's Free University, said 'This will make a big difference...Of course the NSA could still break in if they wanted to, but the mass encryption of emails would make it harder and more expensive for them to do so.'"

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180 comments

This makes sense (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44526797)

Germany is one of the hotspots for Boundless Informant [theguardian.com] . It appears that the US spies on Germany as much as it does on China.

Re:This makes sense (4, Interesting)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#44526965)

Germany is one of the hotspots for Boundless Informant [theguardian.com] . It appears that the US spies on Germany as much as it does on China.

The NSA will probably next be cornering the market on high GPU count graphics cards.

Re:This makes sense (2)

camperdave (969942) | about a year ago | (#44527033)

The NSA will probably next be cornering the market on high GPU count graphics cards.

I would think the NSA could afford to get proper task specific processing units instead of kludging together something on banks of repurposed NVIDIA hardware.

Re:This makes sense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527149)

Graphics cards are cheaper.

Re:This makes sense (4, Insightful)

Rockoon (1252108) | about a year ago | (#44527211)

Graphics cards are cheaper.

Since when did the government care about cost?

Re:This makes sense (2)

icebike (68054) | about a year ago | (#44527361)

They care about lead time.

You can order a truck load of off the shelf cards and have them at your bunker tomorrow.

Re:This makes sense (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | about a year ago | (#44527503)

You can order a truck load of off the shelf cards and have them at your bunker tomorrow.

It doesnt work like that.

If you want tens of thousands of video cards, you are going to have to make a deal with a manufacturer.. contracts are involved.. delivery dates of more than a few months will apply..

This is exactly what the big distributors do. First they hunt down a lot of small contracts (retail outlets that want anywhere from dozens to a thousand), so that they can make a large multi-thousand unit contract deal with a manufacturer.

There is no way in hell that you could have a truck load of video cards delivered to your door tomorrow. Now stop being a naive dipshit that doesnt know how business works.

Re:This makes sense (1)

icebike (68054) | about a year ago | (#44527569)

How many do you think Best Buy has in their warehouses nation wide and In their stores?
Toss in Wallmart, NewEgg, and amazon all the other major net sellers. How many of them will turn down your purchase order?

Toss in Dell, and HP, maybe even Asus and Lenovo. With enough money they will cough up another month in delivery time to customers and ship you all the video cards they have in stock. (Thousands).

Stop being a small company purchasing agent, and understand that the government get get as many video cards as they could possibly use in way shorter time than they could order a custom card loaded with custom cards.

Re:This makes sense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527581)

lol told.

Re:This makes sense (1)

aliquis (678370) | about a year ago | (#44528373)

Now stop being a naive dipshit that doesnt know how business works.

HEY!

Over here we use you insensitive clod!

You insensitive clod!

Re:This makes sense (1)

camperdave (969942) | about a year ago | (#44527857)

They care about lead time.

You can order a truck load of off the shelf cards and have them at your bunker tomorrow.

And then what? Put them into a motherboard with 10,000 PCI slots? And even if they did that, GPUs are optimized for graphics. Codebreaking uses entirely different mathematics than frame rendering. No, the NSA would be using custom APUs, not off the shelf graphics cards.

Re:This makes sense (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527905)

Have you lived in a cave for the past five years? GPUs are where it's at for hashing algorithms. A thousand SIMD cores with a generic instruction set to perform all sorts of math? The only thing that could do better right now is if you designed the ASIC yourself.

Re:This makes sense (5, Interesting)

Fjandr (66656) | about a year ago | (#44527189)

Nvidia supercomputing clusters aren't "repurposed" for highly parallel tasks. That's what they're designed for. They don't just produce graphics cards.

Re:This makes sense (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527377)

Nonsense, all they have to do is setup some dummy site with some scientific information on it, like it's a bunch of researchers looking for aliens (seti@home) or looking for cures to cancer, etc... and a cute little graphic screensaver client or something people can look at to make them 'feel good' that they are doing 'something useful' - meanwhile it's really all NSA codebreaking that's really going on, and they have one heck of a supercomputer for free (or very little cost).

why bother when you already have the keys? (5, Interesting)

SuperBanana (662181) | about a year ago | (#44528233)

The NSA will probably next be cornering the market on high GPU count graphics cards.

What makes you think they don't have the private keys already, or can't get them?

At this point it's probably not unreasonable at all to assume that the NSA either has their foot in the door somehow, or simply National Security Letter's the CA into giving them any keys they want. Technically, all they'd need is the CA's keys, as that's all that protects *your* private key when it's in transit to you, since they're already snooping for everything else.

Really, the current CA system is a dream for the NSA - encryption that is controlled completely by a small group. It's now making a lot of sense why they went after Zimmerman for PGP. The peer-to-peer trust network and person-to-person encryption must've scared the shit out of them.

While we're on the subject of reasonable assumptions - it seems reasonable to assume that the NSA has worked to insert weaknesses and vulnerabilities in most open-source encryption software. Whether they've been successful or not is what we need to know. Remember the fuss a few years ago with IPSEC, OpenBSD, and the FBI?

Re:why bother when you already have the keys? (1)

the_B0fh (208483) | about a year ago | (#44528465)

Remember the fuss a few years ago with IPSEC, OpenBSD, and the FBI?

And it was much ado about nothing. The good thing about OpenBSD is that they are anal about reviewing their code, and nothing was found.

Re:This makes sense (0)

aliquis (678370) | about a year ago | (#44528405)

I was thinking about typing how a math professor once told me lickling my balls cut the time it took to solve a mathematical problem by a factor of 2^1337 and how ___ (enter your favorite spying/intelligence gathering agency here) maybe should try that.

But then I would be lying.

I was going to suggest that over in the real free world sending e-mails in plain text was still enough because like, it was free.. But then I googled free world to see whatever it actually meant what I thought it meant and found this:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_World [wikipedia.org]

Guess it didn't.

What are you calling it when you're not being spied upon by your government or whomever? Dead? Fantasy? =P

Re:This makes sense (4, Informative)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year ago | (#44526981)

Germany is one of the hotspots for Boundless Informant [theguardian.com] . It appears that the US spies on Germany as much as it does on China.

It makes somewhat less sense given that the US spies on Germany with considerable assistance from the German BND [spiegel.de] ...

I can understand why Germans would Not want their emails passing through American control; but it looks like they'll have to clean house if they want to be able to do that just by going domestic.

Re:This makes sense (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527133)

Germany is one of the hotspots for Boundless Informant [theguardian.com] . It appears that the US spies on Germany as much as it does on China.

It makes somewhat less sense given that the US spies on Germany with considerable assistance from the German BND [spiegel.de] ...

I can understand why Germans would Not want their emails passing through American control; but it looks like they'll have to clean house if they want to be able to do that just by going domestic.

Notice that they bitch about PRISM... but don't bother mentioning the UK's program, or any of the other monitoring programs run by various governments around the world. The US is hardly the only country doing it, but it's popular to bash on America and it draws attention away from their own spy programs. The purpose of "in-housing" the email is so it's easier for their own agencies to access.

Re:This makes sense (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about a year ago | (#44527295)

The purpose of "in-housing" the email is so it's easier for their own agencies to access.

Soooo.....why did they enable ssl? - Hardware sales for a relative in the business?

Re:This makes sense (4, Informative)

icebike (68054) | about a year ago | (#44527413)

SSL is enabled by flipping a switch, but it offers no real protection when some three letter agency can surf your mail server farm with their fiber back door.

There is a lot of posturing going on in that article.

Re:This makes sense (2)

stenvar (2789879) | about a year ago | (#44527475)

SSL doesn't even offer protection for transmission against the German government, given that the certificates are issued by Telekom itself.

Re:This makes sense (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527821)

Notice that they bitch about PRISM... but don't bother mentioning the UK's program, or any of the other monitoring programs run by various governments around the world. The US is hardly the only country doing it, but it's popular to bash on America and it draws attention away from their own spy programs. The purpose of "in-housing" the email is so it's easier for their own agencies to access.

Ahhh...the "but everyone else is doing it" defense. If everyone else is doing it, then it must be okay for the US to do it. My teenage daughter tries to use that excuse all the time, and she doesn't get away with it.

Re:This makes sense (2)

icebike (68054) | about a year ago | (#44527391)

I can understand why Germans would Not want their emails passing through American control; but it looks like they'll have to clean house if they want to be able to do that just by going domestic.

Yes, at best it sounds like the NSA will have to get get the data from the BND. Big deal! Looks more pre-packaged and easier to handle if you ask me.

Also the summary has this nugget:

Of course the NSA could still break in if they wanted to, but the mass encryption of emails would make it harder and more expensive for them to do so.'"

Except that we all know that SSL protects traffic from one place to another, but not as the email sits on the mail servers. So one tap into their server farm and all the SSL in the world won't help, because its stored in cleartext.

Re:This makes sense (0)

GrilledFishTaco (3004873) | about a year ago | (#44527073)

It would be naive to think Germany isn't spying on the US

Re:This makes sense (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527227)

What is your point? It is established that the US does a shitload of spying on Germany. From the point of view of a German company, what should they do?

Stop obfuscating and being an apologist for evil shit. And practice reading comprehension, my friend.

Re:This makes sense (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527301)

Spying on the government or military forces of another country is indeed expected from almost any country, spying on civilians is not. That's why the world is pissed at the US.

Re:This makes sense (1)

Nutria (679911) | about a year ago | (#44527969)

spying on civilians is not.

That's delusional, since it assumes that only other governments do things that interest the ones doing the spying.

Re:This makes sense (1, Informative)

richlv (778496) | about a year ago | (#44527219)

germans like to keep a short leash on their own, though. try to buy a usb modem with sim card - passport required. wifi at a hotel ? username and password you have to sign for.
fuck you germany, you are no better despite the fuss angela might throw.

The US spies on everybody (0)

symbolset (646467) | about a year ago | (#44528269)

Spooks spy. That's what they do. It's their job and they're good at it.

so.... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44526801)

It has come to this

Re:so.... (5, Insightful)

chilvence (1210312) | about a year ago | (#44526921)

I find it a beautiful irony that the country that invented the gestapo and the stasi finds the nsa a little bit too much :)

Re:so.... (4, Insightful)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | about a year ago | (#44526989)

I find it absolutely frightening that the citizens of the country that supposedly stands against the tyranny of organizations like the Gestapo and the Stasi not only have not overturned their government over this huge scandal, but in fact mostly agree with the surveillance program.

Americans deserve what's coming to them.

Re: so.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527109)

+1

Re:so.... (4, Insightful)

icebike (68054) | about a year ago | (#44527425)

Americans deserve what's coming to them.

Actually we don't.

It matters not a wit who we elect, because the NSA/CIA are somehow above the law, and quickly co-opt every elected official.
We can do about as much about this as your lowly jewish shop keeper could do in 1938. We are totally screwed here, and its small comfort that you are in the same boat with your own government's spying programs.

Re:so.... (1)

stenvar (2789879) | about a year ago | (#44527487)

I find it absolutely frightening that the citizens of the country that supposedly stands against the tyranny of organizations like the Gestapo and the Stasi not only have not overturned their government over this huge scandal, but in fact mostly agree with the surveillance program.

I'm sorry, are you talking about modern Germany here? Because this shit has been going on in Germany for decades, and there seems to be no serious effort to stop it.

In the US, on the other hand, this sort of spying on citizens is a relatively new phenomenon, and people are fighting it. Usually, it takes a couple of decades to shoot something like this down, but it will get shot down in the US.

Re:so.... (1, Insightful)

artor3 (1344997) | about a year ago | (#44527643)

It's because we're more concerned over people like you, who are so quick to talk of "overturning" the government. Bloody, violent rebellion that would leave the country in tatters, as a response to a program that's absolutely angelic compared to the shit done throughout most of the 20th century? You're nuts. We can push on our representatives to reel in the NSA, but abolishing the NSA (or worse, abolishing the government) would be disastrous. The militant anarchists are a far greater threat to our way of life.

We've come a long way since the age of Nixon. We have an even longer way to go, but burning it all down in frustration would be moronic.

Re:so.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527965)

You're a reactionary idiot. "Overturning the government" can be done purely through the legal means given to us, and has absolutely nothing to do with requiring violent revolution.

Stop painting everybody who wants to get anything done as an anarchist, as you sit around twaddling about with your ineffective "safe" ideas.

Re:so.... (1)

Nutria (679911) | about a year ago | (#44527991)

+2

Re:so.... (1)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | about a year ago | (#44528197)

have you ever looked at a pile of code and decided its better to re-write than to fix?

see my point?

a little? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527145)

-1....
a little?
a little bit of crap still is crap.

Re:so.... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527809)

I find it a beautiful irony that the country that invented the gestapo and the stasi finds the nsa a little bit too much :)

Perhaps they learned from it?

Re:so.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527985)

No irony, they willfully helped the NSA out, as did every other country, again just like with Google, Apple, MS, ect, ect... They all got caught with there hand in the cookie jar, and then to save face, or for PR they denied any involvement. What a shock!! Huh?

Re:so.... (0)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#44526927)

Germany: "Heil Hitler!"
USA: "I find your lack of faith disturbing... goh peh"
Australia: "That's not a knife."
Borg: "Resistance is futile"
Canada: "Well, fuck my ass and call me a bitch."

Re:so.... (3, Informative)

chilvence (1210312) | about a year ago | (#44526943)

Dear America

We like Canada more than you

Sincerely

Everyone else.

Re:so.... (2)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527225)

Dear America

We like Canada more than you

Sincerely

Everyone else.

Dear Everyone Else:
We find it rather disturbing that you're completely ok with mass spy programs until it's the US doing it. We find it upsetting that you only seem to care about WHO is fucking you up the ass, but not the fact that you're getting your anus violated in the first place.

Re:so.... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527429)

Dear Anonymous,
As we all should know by now, picking your sexual partners wisely is key to avoiding sexually transmitted diseases. A 5th grade health class should have informed you that some of these diseases are life threatening.

In closing, some people (not me) like it up the ass but just like vaginal intercourse, being selective in who is dicking who is somewhat necessary and can still ensure good health.

Re:so.... (4, Funny)

geminidomino (614729) | about a year ago | (#44528163)

Dear Anonymous Mk II,

"Who is dicking whom."

Sincerely,
Ms. Bluebell, your sixth grade English Teacher

Re:so.... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527269)

Dear Everyone Else

We like Canada more than America too

Sincerely

Americans

Re:so.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527287)

Canada is no haven, megavideo had some servers there, and they got busted by the US Feds all the same.

Re:so.... (1)

future assassin (639396) | about a year ago | (#44527345)

Hey hey DONT put the Canada word out there. We only have 4 years or so to get out dictator out and hopefully revese some of the "The next state" steps that have been taken by the "Harper Government" Just look at this shit http://www.michaelgeist.ca/content/view/6929/125/ [michaelgeist.ca]

Re:so.... (1)

Trepidity (597) | about a year ago | (#44527405)

I assume this message is coming to Slashdot via time-travel, from before Canada was ruled by Stephen Harper.

P.S. Their environmental record is even worse than the U.S.'s, too, as sad as that is to contemplate.

Re:so.... (4, Funny)

couchslug (175151) | about a year ago | (#44527541)

Dear Everyone Else

We are delighted you like our norther corporate appendage more than us

That will increase its value after assimilation is complete

Sincerely

America

Re:so.... (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#44528325)

Freeze if you want to, you misguided martyr...

Gee, ya' think... (1)

djupedal (584558) | about a year ago | (#44526817)

...those officials might know more than they let on? After all, this could be a simple contingency plan they've had ready.

What mass encryption? (3, Insightful)

BLKMGK (34057) | about a year ago | (#44526851)

SSL is a transport crypto, if they "break in" the data is still stored in clear text on the servers. This was a crypto professor?? Wow...

Re:What mass encryption? (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#44526973)

erm... if anyone breaks in to anything it usually implies that they take what they're after

if you have the infrastructure to break SSL en mass encrypting on the server probably isn't going to buy you much extra security. maybe the web page should be presented to the user in encrypted form too (even seen the movie "antitrust"... the cameras are watching).

Re:What mass encryption? (3, Interesting)

BLKMGK (34057) | about a year ago | (#44528127)

My point is that SSL encrypts in transit not at rest. While sniffing the traffic and breaking the SSL is likely hard, if done right and new breaks notwithstanding, but when the code lands on the mail server it won't be STORED encrypted. At that point one need only break into the server and dump the data unencrypted back to the mothership. SSL will have done nothing but made it harder to sniff the traffic. She seems to allow for the idea they may and could break in and seems to think the SSL provides some protection against this - I'm baffled.

This woman said "... Of course the NSA could still break in if they wanted to, but the mass encryption of emails would make it harder and more expensive for them to do so." and she was referring to their plan to use SSL transport encryption.

Her comment makes NO sense and this is what I was trying to point out, I didn't think I'd have to explain it to this level. She seems to think that because they've used SSL in transport that someone breaking into the server is going to be faced with a crypto problem because of it - they won't. If that's truly what she thought and she was quoted accurately then I'm shocked that she claims any sort of knowledge about cryptography. Transport crypto does nothing at all for STORAGE. If all a bank ever did was rely on SSL then someone breaking into their website would have a field day with the unencrypted access to the data!

P.S. What web mail based email service DOESN'T use SSL transport? If they were allowing their customer's email to go over the wire unencrypted prior to this then I'm, again, in shock!

Thiscould be the beginning (4, Interesting)

Teun (17872) | about a year ago | (#44526859)

This could be the beginning of US companies being shunned for what their government is doing.
Because this message will hit the front pages and prime time news.
Although many Europeans say they've got nothing to hide they are jstill pissed off about the warrant-less spying an outside, previously considered friendly, force is doing upon them.
I am really sad about the need for this walling off, it defeats the great idea and ideal of a world-wide network.

But it seems to be necessary, if only as a message to the perpetrators because we know nothing is unbreakable.

And please do remember this mail will still be accessible to German courts but now on their own conditions.

Re: Thiscould be the beginning (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44526941)

Some 'Ost-algia':

Why do ex-Stasi officers make great Berlin taxi drivers?

You just tell them your name and they already know where you live...

Re:Thiscould be the beginning (4, Interesting)

Spottywot (1910658) | about a year ago | (#44527001)

There is a certain amount of dick waving about this, but the more companies and countries that embarrass America and the NSA the better.

Re:Thiscould be the beginning (1)

Teun (17872) | about a year ago | (#44527241)

Let's hope this will make the public more aware of spying in general, German parliamentarians have already requested information about their own services.

Re:Thiscould be the beginning (4, Interesting)

stenvar (2789879) | about a year ago | (#44527207)

This could be the beginning of US companies being shunned for what their government is doing.

That's not "the beginning", it's a long, drawn-out process of European politicians and European corporations throwing whatever shit they can at the US in order to try to get Europeans to use European servers and services. They want that both because it means more revenue for them, and because it's easier for European governments to spy on their own citizens if they use European servers.

And please do remember this mail will still be accessible to German courts but now on their own conditions.

Are you really so naive that you think "courts" are involved? German government agencies have nearly free reign in what they access within Germany and what they do with it. You're probably still better off using a US server; the NSA may be listening in to everything you say, but the German government will have a much harder time to get at that information.

Re:Thiscould be the beginning (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527217)

This could be the beginning of US companies being shunned for what their government is doing.

Because this message will hit the front pages and prime time news.

Although many Europeans say they've got nothing to hide they are jstill pissed off about the warrant-less spying an outside, previously considered friendly, force is doing upon them.

I am really sad about the need for this walling off, it defeats the great idea and ideal of a world-wide network.

But it seems to be necessary, if only as a message to the perpetrators because we know nothing is unbreakable.

And please do remember this mail will still be accessible to German courts but now on their own conditions.

Why didn't they keep their mail in country already? What specific legal protections of privacy did they think they had in the U.S.?

Re:Thiscould be the beginning (1)

w1zz4 (2943911) | about a year ago | (#44527363)

You would be surprise to know how many pawns don't give a fuck... I got an argument lately with a friends who was seeking for a cloud provider to host his computer backup. All the company he mentionned are american. I then told him if I was him I would never deal with an american co to store my data because of PRISM. He respond to me that it was probably over hyped that PRISM stuff, and anyway he don't have any thing to hide from the NSA. USA are leaning more more toward a 1984 like society and are trying to extend it to other "friendly" country and it piss me off...

The scarier ones... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527535)

are the Google fanboys. 'I don't care about my privacy because they're providing really awesome service for me... before I even know I want it!'

You know what the next step from that is? Providing you really awesome service from the government before you even realize you did something wrong. Y'know, assuming you DON'T fuck up, and they just need to dig up something to blackmail you with instead. Either/or.

Re:Thiscould be the beginning (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about a year ago | (#44527575)

What exactly was the argument? Seems to me you voice a few concerns and your friend didn't care enough about them to bother with them. Did you argue with him that he should care or something?

Re:Thiscould be the beginning (1)

w1zz4 (2943911) | about a year ago | (#44527739)

In fact we argue for about ten minutes before he finally told me that he had nothing to hide from NSA. At this moment I was so mad at him that I just move on to something else... Don't ask me for the full log of this conversation, it's not all clear in my head, damn beers....

Re:Thiscould be the beginning (2)

ISoldat53 (977164) | about a year ago | (#44528377)

Ironic. I wonder how much of the intel goes directly to US corporations?

Pointless (1, Insightful)

nurb432 (527695) | about a year ago | (#44526865)

All governments monitor their citizens.

Re:Pointless (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44526901)

Okay, but what is ratio of number of governments monitoring to the number of citizens monitored. And how much does the US government care about protecting the rights of Germans? My guess would be: not much. German law has privacy guarantees. The US law pretty much doesn't. So US surveillance of Germans could collect information that was illegal to collect about US citizens or illegal by Germany to collect about German citizens. And then the US could use this information to blackmail, embarrass, or commit fraud. Or they could make an error, and get a German citizen put on a terrorist watchlist.

There are a lot of reasons for governments to spy on one another, but there is no valid reason for a government to spy on random citizens of another country.

Re:Pointless (5, Interesting)

hydrofix (1253498) | about a year ago | (#44527025)

German companies now rate U.S. as the second worst risk [ft.com] to industrial espionage, only second to China. Even Russia is considered a more trustworthy IT partner than the Americans. It's not only the private citizens who care for some privacy.

Re:Pointless (1, Interesting)

stenvar (2789879) | about a year ago | (#44527221)

And where is the evidence of the NSA actually engaging in industrial espionage?

Re:Pointless (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527379)

You could, for example, type "NSA engaging in industrial espionage" into Google.

Re:Pointless (3, Interesting)

RocketRabbit (830691) | about a year ago | (#44527399)

This goes all the way back to the Seattle Asian Pacific Economic Forum in the 1990s, and Snowden released multiple documents relating that the NSA is using its capabilities engage in industrial espionage on behalf of some select companies.

Last year the federal government allowed intelligence operatives to sell the services to private companies while under the employ of these services.

Wikileaks cablegate also relates a lot of these sorts of incidents.

So, there's reams of evidence. If you can't see it that's a personal problem.

Re:Pointless (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527967)

Echelon was abused to this end, this is well known.

Re:Pointless (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44528165)

Citations? Sources? I call bullshit!

Re: Pointless (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44528505)

I suppose you could read the wikipedia article, but the EU report on ECHELON has a nice section (10.7) outlining the known history of state-involved industrial espionage: http://cryptome.org/echelon-ep-fin.htm#10 [cryptome.org]

Re:Pointless (1)

jhol13 (1087781) | about a year ago | (#44528421)

Before 9/11 CIA admitted that the most important task for them is industrial espionage. Now it might be second most important.

Re:Pointless (1)

Teun (17872) | about a year ago | (#44527057)

Sure but the point is this is to hinder a foreign intervention into matters the local security forces should and can deal with but now according to the laws of the land.

Re:Pointless (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527079)

The US has always monitored its citizens, just not on virtually every single citizen one of her citizens unconstitutionally (illegally).

Re:Pointless (1)

msobkow (48369) | about a year ago | (#44527243)

The American people should be so proud. Their government has managed to surpass China's internet monitoring through automation. Next steps: Censorship and pre-crime arrests.

Re:Pointless (1)

msobkow (48369) | about a year ago | (#44527419)

Oops. I forgot. They already have "pre-crime" arrests: extraordinary rendition for suspected terrorists.

Re:Pointless (1)

roc97007 (608802) | about a year ago | (#44527529)

All governments monitor their citizens.

I don't think it's a matter of "whether", but a matter of "to what extent".

Not all governments throw people away (4, Interesting)

copponex (13876) | about a year ago | (#44527759)

ATF uses fake drugs, big bucks to snare suspects [usatoday.com]

It's the drugs â" though non-existent â" that make that possible because federal law usually imposes tougher mandatory sentences for drugs than for guns. The more drugs the agents say are likely to be in the stash house, the longer the targets' sentence is likely to be. Conspiring to distribute 5 kilograms of cocaine usually carries a mandatory 10-year sentence â" or 20 years if the target has already been convicted of a drug crime.

That fact has not escaped judges' notice. The ATF's stings give agents "virtually unfettered ability to inflate the amount of drugs supposedly in the house and thereby obtain a greater sentence," a federal appeals court in California said in 2010. "The ease with which the government can manipulate these factors makes us wary." Still, most courts have said tough federal sentencing laws leave them powerless to grant shorter prison terms.

To the ATF, long sentences are the point. Fifteen years "is the mark," Smith said.

"You get the guy, you get him with a gun, and you can lock him up for 18 months for the gun. All you did was give this guy street creds," Smith said. "When you go in there and you stamp him out with a 15-to-life sentence, you make an impact in that community." ...
[A defendant's] lawyer, Michael Falconer, said he wouldn't be opposed to the drug-house stings if he thought the ATF could make sure they were aimed only at people who were already ripping off drug dealers. "But on some level," he said, "it's Orwellian that they have to create crime to prevent crime."

You know what the US government won't do for that same individual? Ensure they have a decent education, a basic level of care for their mental and physical health, a safe neighborhood, and a real shot at becoming a contributing member of society even though that would cost less than convicting them of thoughtcrime and throwing them in prison for fifteen years. Instead we pay for some kitted out machine gun-toting pigs to play cowboy rather than policing the streets like officers. Not incidentally, they're too chickenshit to get out of their cars in a lot of those neighborhoods. Yet they still collect their paycheck and their pension, live way out in the suburbs to avoid the desperation they help create with their cowardice, and pat themselves on the back for being heroes.

Now imagine you're an immigrant, or an Iraqi, Yemeni, Afghani, or Syrian. You're worth even less than a citizen. You're trash. You're not even a speedbump on the way to some policy goal rooted in geopolitical theories that have been dead to the rest of the world since the 80s. The kind of policy that sends a million troops and five trillion dollars to a sanctioned, isolated nation, and ends up destabilizing the entire region, massively aiding Iran, and stoking tensions between Shia and Sunni, all while avoiding a single hint of punishment for Saudi Arabia or Pakistan where all of the funding and most of the terrorists for 9/11 came from. Oh, and as a plus: where al Qaeda was unheard of before, they now have another weak state to operate from [nytimes.com] . Brilliant.

That's why the rest of the world despises the American government. It's not our freedom. It's our complete lack of principle, abject hypocrisy, and massive state violence that they hate. And with our apathetic political landscape, they're beginning to tire of Americans individually for being lazy, ignorant, wasteful, and greedy. We just sit here and take it; a nation of lolling toddlers waiting on the next innovation in fast food and reruns of Pawn Stars while our wealth is squandered in military adventurism that has killed millions of innocent people in only five decades.

PRISM is just icing on the rotting carcass that once was America, and our allies are starting to look towards the exit. Our government has taken another step on the road to fascism and failed statehood: it has declared unlimited surveillance and assassination rights over every human being on the planet; it has declared war on the truth, and it has promised (and delivered) punishment for anyone who dares to speak it. Despite that, the same throwaway phrase about America not being the worst country in the world is still technically true, if you're not allowed to consider how it treats non-citizens. But if the best thing about your country is that it isn't Somalia, do you think there are a few things you could work on?

Anyway. There's my two minutes of well-earned hate for the state of democracy in America. Enjoy the decline.

Re:Pointless (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about a year ago | (#44528043)

Is up to the country if decide to monitor their own citizens or not. The big problem are the governments that monitor the citizens of all the other countries (besides their own ones)

NSA Announces ... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44526869)

And the NSA announced that it will figure out a way to get DT's data anyway because that's how they roll.

T-Mobile USA? (2)

MrEricSir (398214) | about a year ago | (#44527047)

Does this affect Deutsche Telekom subsidiaries such as T-Mobile USA?

Re:T-Mobile USA? (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#44527421)

Self signed National Security Letters are the law in the USA.

SSL security (2)

ubeatha (531412) | about a year ago | (#44527257)

What's stopping the NSA from man in the middling all this SSL traffic? They have the fibre providers rooted, I find it hard to believe that they don't have to print certs like the treasury prints money. I seem to recall China doing something similar with one of their root CAs a couple of years back.

Re:SSL security (1)

timeOday (582209) | about a year ago | (#44528243)

Because very quickly somebody would compare SSL certs exchanged through a different path, notice the discrepancy, and the whole thing would blow wide open. Or are you assuming they have nabbed DT's private key? Or cracked their public key?

Snowden Gave the Goverment and Uppercut (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44527389)

and good on him for that... the goverment needs a good solid reminder that they are supposed to be working for the people, and not the corporate dogs.

This is all gearing up to be a modern form of dictatorship...

Corporate power = hitler power... over time...

No more NSA splitter? (4, Informative)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#44527397)

"95% of intra-German Internet communications are routed via a switch in Frankfurt."
From the EU "Temporary Committee on the ECHELON Interception System"
http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?pubRef=-//EP//NONSGML+REPORT+A5-2001-0264+0+DOC+PDF+V0//EN&language=EN [europa.eu]
How will SSL be "harder and more expensive" for the NSA/GCHQ if a friendly German agency just hands over the keys again?
Seems like the West German post war telco system was designed to track Soviet/East German contacts via a few central locations.
Why would the US need to "break in" if they where in on the design and have a great generational working relationship with German telcos and intelligence agency staff?
i.e. "still doesn't prevent governments from getting information"

Re:No more NSA splitter? (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about a year ago | (#44527703)

Geesh, all your rational reasoning is going to spoil the incentives to switch services and pay a lot of money to host with these companies. You are spoiling capitalism here..

Won't matter (1)

s2r (461076) | about a year ago | (#44527889)

The metadata will still be collected as soon as the email leaves the smtp server unencrypted.

Perhaps it's time for mail clients to return? (2)

laird (2705) | about a year ago | (#44528013)

Perhaps it's time for mail clients to make a comeback.

With end-to-end encryption, such as PGP, GPG or S/MIME, users control their own security and don't have to trust anyone in between, so all the ISPs could know (and leak to whoever wants to spy on their users) is the email addresses in the routing, not the email contents. These problems were all solved many years ago. Sure, mail clients aren't as convenient as webmail, but if there's a concerted attack by our ISPs on our private communications, the least we can do is fight back.

There are secure mail clients for pretty much every OS. So no easy browser access, but that's the cost of controlling your own communications.

Re:Perhaps it's time for mail clients to return? (2)

geminidomino (614729) | about a year ago | (#44528249)

Good luck with that.

Even back before local mail clients started to fall by the wayside, setting up [P]GP[G] generally involved a lot of not very user-friendly hoop-jumping. Then, after you finally got it to work (or you went with one of the niche mail clients whose only real functionality was the encryption), you had to deal with keys.

By the time you got your keys ready to go, and assuming you could find someone who could/would sign it, etc... you most likely realized that 100% of the people you were likely to email in the next 24 months would not be jumping through the same hoops, so you were good to go, but it was still ultimately useless to you.

If, by some miracle of statistical noise, you did end up in email communication with someone who had both the patience and inclination to go through the same setup, and that setup was compatible with yours, he/she was probably on the other end of the continent, if not on a different one, which made the traditional model of face-to-facing for key exchange impractical, at best. Of course, various middle-men services sprang up for a while to facilitate that process, which pretty much defeated the purpose of that process.

I'm not saying that end-to-end encryption isn't useful. Not even close to saying that. But if we're being honest, it's not something that's feasible to work for the mundanes any time soon.

Good start (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about a year ago | (#44528061)

Next make sure that all citizens have a public IP, can put a server there, and even provide an SSL certificate and generic dns name so they can put their own secure servers if they want. Teach to trust noone, and they will be free.

Hey America... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44528461)

All your jobs are belong to us.

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