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How the NSA Is Harming America's Economy

Soulskill posted about 5 months ago | from the surveillance-industrial-complex dept.

Businesses 330

anagama writes "According to an article at Medium, 'Cisco has seen a huge drop-off in demand for its hardware in emerging markets, which the company blames on fears about the NSA using American hardware to spy on the rest of the world. ... Cisco saw orders in Brazil drop 25% and Russia drop 30%. ... Analysts had expected Cisco's business in emerging markets to increase 6%, but instead it dropped 12%, sending shares of Cisco plunging 10% in after-hours trading.' This is in addition to the harm caused to remote services that may cost $35 billion over the next three years. Then, of course, there are the ways the NSA has made ID theft easier. ID theft cost Americans $1.52 billion in 2011, to say nothing of the time wasted in solving ID theft issues — some of that figure is certainly attributable to holes the NSA helped build. The NSA, its policies, and the politicians who support the same are directly responsible for massive losses of money and jobs."

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330 comments

And everyone on Slashdot cares about Cisco (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434161)

and their business prospects, at least for the purposes of this one story.

Re:And everyone on Slashdot cares about Cisco (4, Interesting)

Z00L00K (682162) | about 5 months ago | (#45434221)

From one perspective some of us do care - they do make stuff that works reasonably well.

But my suspicion is that there's more to this than just abandoning Cisco. In many cases it's a lot cheaper to set up a router based on a PC and Linux, which probably is what happens in "emerging markets".

As for the NSA - they could probably do a lot better for the economy if they did put their effort into tracking down and nuking scammers, spammers and other internet pests - and their karma would be better. And they better use the CIA and others to really "take care" of those problems.

Re:And everyone on Slashdot cares about Cisco (2)

mythosaz (572040) | about 5 months ago | (#45434709)

"Emerging markets" (and god knows what the scare quotes are for) likely need enterprise class equipment too.

Emerging markets can use hand-me-down SOHO equipment in their houses, classrooms and hotels, but those machines connect to something bigger, and throwing Vyatta on a used PC doesn't compare to a 6500 for your campus or 9000 for your new ISP.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vyatta [wikipedia.org]

Re:And everyone on Slashdot cares about Cisco (4, Insightful)

gmuslera (3436) | about 5 months ago | (#45434739)

Router based on PCs were there since last century, it wouldn't change projections beause they were always there. But putting an equipment that you can't trust in the critical point of your network where you must have the maximum trust (either because Cisco want to cooperate, or is forced to, secret laws are nukes in the trust domain) is not a great idea.

Poor Cisco (5, Funny)

frovingslosh (582462) | about 5 months ago | (#45434389)

I feel really bad for Cisco. They went out of their way to build all those back doors into all of their equipment for the NSA, and now people don't want to buy their products. Does that seem fair?

Re:Poor Cisco (0)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 5 months ago | (#45434487)

"its for the children!" was the battle cry; but why was president bush so interested in a child's left behind?

Re:Poor Cisco (2)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | about 5 months ago | (#45434569)

every vendor who rises above a certain level of market share is going to be 'asked' to install backdoors in their networking and infrastructure gear.

I can't say how I know this, but I know this. I'm pretty sure I know this... ;)

its not just cisco. its all networking gear that the US gov would want to buy and operate.

Re:Poor Cisco (1)

Nerdfest (867930) | about 5 months ago | (#45434653)

A decent company would have outed the requests (if allowed, or ideally even if not). The problem is, I would guess that they're promised government contracts, etc, in exchange for their 'patriotism'. Global companies should think globally and not let local greed endanger their business.

Re:Poor Cisco (3, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | about 5 months ago | (#45434805)

Well, nobody knows how much of a choice they have in the matter. If the NSA come rolling in with a National Security Letter, comply and keep quiet it's rather hard to refuse. It's not like they'd just make a corporate fine for leaking it, they'd be going after individuals to put them in prison. Are you ready to do a Snowden and screw your whole life for the sake of not complying with a government order of questionable constitutionality? If the government wants to put you over a barrel, they can.

Re:Poor Cisco (2)

thsths (31372) | about 5 months ago | (#45434875)

Good question. Obviously a NSL can require them to hand over *customer* data, and to keep quiet about it.

But how about secret keys? It seems that the NSA is trying to get those, too. So all hardware made in the US is compromised.

And can they demand a company to lie to customers? To manipulate computer systems? To install back doors? I am not usually one for primary virtues, but this seems to be crossing a line.

Re:And everyone on Slashdot cares about Cisco (3, Informative)

geogob (569250) | about 5 months ago | (#45434545)

I don't know who is interested in cisco, but you missed the big picture.

Re:And everyone on Slashdot cares about Cisco (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about 5 months ago | (#45434811)

Exactly, The big issue would far bigger even than Cisco, Microsoft, Google, Amazon and Apple all go bankrupt at once because of this.

Re:And everyone on Slashdot cares about Cisco (1)

rolfwind (528248) | about 5 months ago | (#45434667)

Yeah, as if it's just limited to Cisco, and certainly won't have an effect on the rest of the tech industry (like Cloud Computing) going all the way down to programmers... dumbass.

Re:And everyone on Slashdot cares about Cisco (4, Informative)

sjames (1099) | about 5 months ago | (#45434889)

But even if you pop the champagne and throw a party when Cisco is hurt, I wouldn't be surprised if all other U.S. companies suffer similar harm, and that's no cause for a party.

Re:And everyone on Slashdot cares about Cisco (1)

Jawnn (445279) | about 5 months ago | (#45434925)

Uhm..., no? Yes? Maybe? What is your point?
Personally, I despise Cisco for their heavy handed business practices. They lost my business a long time ago, but from the "what's good for the U.S. economy, they do still count. So it sucks, hard, to see our government's misguided policies affect them, not to mention just about every other U.S. tech company with an international market.

tough love (5, Interesting)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | about 5 months ago | (#45434171)

#include "grumpycat"
printf("good!\n");

seriously, I would not trust US hardware and software, either.

but then again, those routers are already at every choke-point on the internet. the US owns the internet (public one, anyway) in all practical ways.

but for private networks when you can pick which routers and switches you want to deploy, picking a US based vendor would not be wise. I would not do it if I was in charge of a private network.

maybe its time we consider going back to software (oss) based networking gear. it will be much slower than hardware based ones but we can't verify hardware designs like we can software ones.

there is also no way to put this genie back into the bottle. once your cred is gone, its gone. and the US has lost ALL cred when it comes to safeguarding your privacy.

sad but true. as a US citizen, I am sorry for how badly we have botched the world's trust.

Re:tough love (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434383)

> I am sorry for how badly we have botched the world's trust.

I'm sorry too that I I will have to boycott products of US companies for... probably forever. I'm sure you all understand it would be really stupid for me help finance NSA's espionage activities towards me and my employer.

Re:tough love (3, Insightful)

cyberjock1980 (1131059) | about 5 months ago | (#45434583)

Just goes to show what I asked a few weeks ago. Back in Oct I posted a comment that this may lead to a IT revolution of sorts because of all of this.

No surprise that when I commented about it before I was labeled 1:Redundant.

Think ahead people. If I were a competitor from outside the USA I'd be asking Snowden to release more details. Heck, I if I were a CEO of one of them I might be writing him a "thank you" check. The worse the NSA spying appears to be(or even that looks plausible to do with financial resources) the more people will want to avoid US companies that might be in bed with the government.

At this point, it doesn't really matter "how much" worse it gets. Everyone's already figured they can source hardware from outside the USA. What would be an interesting twist is if decades later we find out that all these people started buying from China or some other country and those do actually have backdoors while the US companies actually didn't.

Not going to happen. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434827)

"we find out that all these people started buying from China or some other country and those do actually have backdoors while the US companies actually didn't."

Never going to happen.

Not because china or some other country (e.g. USA?) isn't putting backdoors in, but that we won't find that US companies didn't, because actually, they did.

Re:tough love (4, Insightful)

mythosaz (572040) | about 5 months ago | (#45434865)

What trustworthy country do you want to buy them from? China? Russia? One of the major US allies?

sigh

Just give me the Cisco one. :(

Re:tough love (4, Informative)

Kjella (173770) | about 5 months ago | (#45434509)

maybe its time we consider going back to software (oss) based networking gear. it will be much slower than hardware based ones but we can't verify hardware designs like we can software ones.

That software has to run on hardware and if you can't trust the hardware you are screwed anyway, it's like trusting your software (oss) encryption when there's a hardware keylogger installed. Send the right magic numbers and the hardware could start doing anything it wants like mirroring traffic, dumping memory, whatever the attacker needs to completely compromise the box. The only advantage would be that it could run on more generic hardware that you hopefully could buy from a more trusted supplier.

Re:tough love (5, Insightful)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about 5 months ago | (#45434533)

In today's multi/transnational corporate world the USA does not exist. The famous Authur Jensen speech from 1976 comes to mind. There is nobody that's going to protect us from this anywhere in the world. Anybody who tries will be 'liberated'. And the biggest part of the problem is that people keep on blaming policy and politicians for this, and nobody will look in the mirror and admit that they voted for it, To them I say, *you asked for it, thankyouverymuch.* The ball is in our court.

Re:tough love (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434855)

I voted for Gary Johnson, is my voice not enough?

Re:tough love (3, Insightful)

Nemyst (1383049) | about 5 months ago | (#45434597)

I wouldn't trust US hardware, Chinese hardware, Russian hardware, European hardware, Australian/NZ hardware.... Where does that leave us really?

Re:tough love (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434625)

It's not a about 'cred'... dude.

When your government puts its own institutional interests above those the people from which it derives its democratic legitimacy, it's no longer acting democratically. So, technically, once the US began operating imperially, back in the 19th century, the slow withering rot of oligarchy began to emerge as the driving farce behind the facade of electoral chaos.

Take the case of Teddy Roosevelt who believed that the US naval superiority should be used offensively to increase domestic political power by use of force or the ease by which Truman chose to drop not one but two weapons of mass destruction on the Japanese. These actions were neither expressions of democracy of altruism. They were imperial. Not that we should overlook the covert actions of the Dulles brothers when they used the Dept of State and CIA to prosecute the interest of US corporate business around world in the 50s.

The players have changed but the song remains the same, and now that the world is largely developed and includes 7 billion people who tend to get in the way, either legally or by their mere presence, there's nothing left to do but degrade the wealth of those who share the same nationality. So get ready for the 21st Century. It's going to be a bumpy ride if you still believe in the fairy tale of Democracy for all or self determination for anyone.

Re:tough love (4, Insightful)

SternisheFan (2529412) | about 5 months ago | (#45435019)

or the ease by which Truman chose to drop not one but two weapons of mass destruction on the Japanese.

Truman was trying to end the war between Japan and the U.S. before it could become a long, drawn out ground war costing millions more lives. AFAIK, the U.S. only had enough material for the 2 bombs (after testing), which of course was not made public. Japan did not immediately surrender after the first A-Bomb attack, and that's when the 2nd bomb was used, and only then did Japan surrender. Thank God that Japan did not know that Truman was bluffing his poker hand, or the war could have gone on far longer.

Re:tough love (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 5 months ago | (#45434631)

And so one thinks that these back doors only exist in U.S. products? Maybe Cisco, et.al. would be more "open" to their protocols? Maybe more profit could be made by approaching solutions were simplicity is illuminated?

Re:tough love (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434745)

Anfd if your Open Source software is installed on compromised hardware you sacrificed performance for what?

Re:tough love (2, Insightful)

marcello_dl (667940) | about 5 months ago | (#45434863)

> sad but true. as a US citizen, I am sorry for how badly we have botched the world's trust.

Don't worry, you never have been trusted as a nation. Individual Americans, sure, I am likely to trust them more than my countrymen, but collectively all political entities behave the same. Our interests first.

Certainly attributable? (0)

MarkvW (1037596) | about 5 months ago | (#45434175)

It doesn't help the cause of privacy when people use ridiculous hyperbole to attack the government.

If the NSA-created holes really are "certainly" attributable to identity theft cases, then SHOW ME THE PROOF. Otherwise, stick to reporting the facts and omit your government-hating opinions.

Re:Certainly attributable? (1, Troll)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | about 5 months ago | (#45434197)

lol! show me the proof?

are you serious?

you can't be serious. you just can't be.

how exactly do you expose exploits in routers when no one will ever admit they exist, but we all are pretty damned sure they DO exist?

besides, if you do find an exploit, you can expect a NSL that will stop you from telling people about it.

Re:Certainly attributable? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434637)

There have been absolutely no cases of identity theft which are even remotely attributable to the alleged (probable? proven?) weaknesses the NSA inserted into encryption algorithms. No one yet knows how to exploit these weaknesses, and if an intentional weakness does exist in the elliptic curve random number generation algorithm then it is a keyed weakness such that you need the secret values that only the NSA has in order to exploit it.

So the particular statement referring to the NSA making identity theft easier is flat out BULLSHIT. Only a moron or someone with no technical understanding of the issue would make such a claim.

Seriously, rag on the NSA for stuff that they have actually done, not this extrapolated crap since it just makes us look stupid.

Re:Certainly attributable? (4, Informative)

thsths (31372) | about 5 months ago | (#45435071)

> So the particular statement referring to the NSA making identity theft easier is flat out BULLSHIT.

How so? I thought it is pretty much fact. They introduced some weak encryption, and most of all they introduced weak random number generators, which means any key generated using it should be considered compromised. If the NSA can break it, the hackers will learn how to break it, too, especially if there is money behind it.

Re:Certainly attributable? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434773)

http://www.cisco.com/en/US/tech/tk583/tk799/tsd_technology_support_protocol_home.html

Anyone ever hear of lawful intercept or seen those scripts on the net for experimenting with such on your own router?

Re:Certainly attributable? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434275)

"Proof" is classified. Move along citizen.

Re:Certainly attributable? (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 5 months ago | (#45434649)

"Proof" is classified. Move along citizen.

Only classified in the US and with cooperation of complicit nations. Of course, China's not about to publicly point out the holes in cisco routers, as they probably leverage them themselves. Likewise, Russia won't do it, as they've got crime syndicates taking advantage. It's up to countries like Brazil and India to speak out about these things... and do so in a way that they don't get silenced.

SHOW ME THE PROOF (5, Insightful)

frovingslosh (582462) | about 5 months ago | (#45434501)

SHOW ME THE PROOF

I would, but look what happened to the last brave American who tried that. I don't want to have to seek asylum in Russia and ask some crime ridden South American country to take me in, nor watch my back every minute for the U.S. agents trying to kidnap or kill me. The President talked big about protecting whistle blowers before this happened, but then all of that was quietly removed from his website Everyone of us that actually has the proof knows better than show it to you.

Re:Certainly attributable? (1)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | about 5 months ago | (#45434611)

If the NSA-created holes really are "certainly" attributable to identity theft cases, then SHOW ME THE PROOF.

Well since the NSA started its movement the free Internet we knew and loved has changed utterly, so I'd say some kind of identity theft has taken place.

Re:Certainly attributable? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 5 months ago | (#45434645)

dunno about that, but I don't get why bother with nsa created holes when the legislation allows the holder of information needed for such id theft to sell it and some have been selling them(credit check companies).

and about cert authorities with usa operations being coerced to co-operate? fucking no shit sherlock! that's not even news, that's just a direct consequence of the powers the agencies have.

Re:Certainly attributable? (0)

Zemran (3101) | about 5 months ago | (#45434725)

If you want something, then stop sitting on your arse screaming, and go and get it. No one is going to run around for your lazy arse.

Re:Certainly attributable? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45435029)

I think you fail to grasp the point of the post you are replying to. When making a claim, the burden of proof falls to the one making the claim.

If I claim the easter bunny is real, you are well within your rights to demand proof before believing me, and it would not be appropriate for me to tell you to get off your lazy ass and find it for yourself.

One day, you will understand this.

Re:Certainly attributable? (3, Informative)

sjames (1099) | about 5 months ago | (#45435027)

A bit hard to prove a case of it but not too hard to show the possability. Google around for the documented cases in Greece and (IIRC Italy) where organized crime used U.S. mandated back doors into telephone switches to spy on their government.

Re:Certainly attributable? (1)

datavirtue (1104259) | about 5 months ago | (#45435087)

The only acceptable opinion of government is suspicion and loathing. When people like government it becomes this icky thing where the figurehead turns into a god and that figurehead's actions are revered by those who aren't getting killed or robbed by him/her.

jah (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434181)

nuke them if they do not buy cisco!

You mean Massive Increase in jobs and spending (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about 5 months ago | (#45434187)

As those companies who are avoiding Cisco are still going to buy someone else's stuff, and they'll be a whole new crew of people that have to either migrate off the cisco gear, or figure out if it really is bugged or not.

Either way, more jobs will be created than lost, they just might not be created in America.

Re:You mean Massive Increase in jobs and spending (5, Interesting)

larry bagina (561269) | about 5 months ago | (#45434355)

Look beyond hardware -- think data centers, cloud services, etc. Europeans are dropping American-based offerings for European-based ones or moving it back inhouse.

Re:You mean Massive Increase in jobs and spending (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434461)

Oh look, it's the broken window fallacy!

massive losses of money and jobs (0)

us7892 (655683) | about 5 months ago | (#45434191)

>> The NSA, its policies, and the politicians who support the same are directly responsible for massive losses of money and jobs.

Melodramatic.

Re:massive losses of money and jobs (1)

elloGov (1217998) | about 5 months ago | (#45434315)

Exactly, that's the part these self-professed "patriots" don't get. Ideology and nationalism doesn't put food on the table.

Re:massive losses of money and jobs (1)

sabri (584428) | about 5 months ago | (#45434563)

Exactly, that's the part these self-professed "patriots" don't get. Ideology and nationalism doesn't put food on the table.

Actually, it would.

If everyone in the US would stop buying foreign goods or sending money oversees, the US can sustain itself. There is more than enough farmland, more than enough industrial capacity to produce everything needed and the world's most innovative area (silicon valley) is in the US.

So while I'm not at all one of those "the US is the best" folks, it is certainly true that the US will survive should the world decide to hate it.

Re:massive losses of money and jobs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434847)

Idiot. Without export there will be no import. Who is going to sell you petrol? Or iPad? Or precious metals? Or steel? Or lithium for you convertible's batteries? IDIOT.

Re:massive losses of money and jobs (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434605)

>> The NSA, its policies, and the politicians who support the same are directly responsible for massive losses of money and jobs.

Melodramatic.

Not really. Having demonstrated that American firms can't be trusted (because due to the PATRIOT Act they can't), American firms will see declines in sales from outside of America.

If American firms see declines in sales, they lay off people. So you get the double whammy of companies making less money, and having fewer people on the payroll.

All those consultants who might be engaged to do something, well, now they're persona-non-grata because they too can't be trusted since they could be compelled to hand over your business information.

All of those cloud based services and the like, well, people can't trust them either.

For a country which has staked its future in IP and a knowledge economy ... making your vendors into someone that can't be trusted means that all of a sudden those things which were supposed to save the economy are now floundering.

And America keeps acting like it's their right to violate local laws and generally act like douchebags. All while acting like if someone else did this it would be an act of war.

So, it's not melodramatic. It's real, and entirely deserved, and a product of your own creation.

Buy Chinese... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434199)

Let Brasil and Russia buy Chinese then. They deserve only the best.

Re:Buy Chinese... (4, Insightful)

elloGov (1217998) | about 5 months ago | (#45434299)

Had you any business acumen, you'd realize that your short-sighted vision will bite you in the bum long-term. "Yes, we suck, but the other guys suck worse" Eventually, someone will come along/transform to provide a better solution and eat your lunch.

Re:Buy Chinese... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434425)

It is a risk all must take, including the Chinese. Risks being the same, and they sucking worse, it will bite them in the bum even more. Does it make sense or is all your "business acumen" not so useful after all?

Re:Buy Chinese... (2)

Lisias (447563) | about 5 months ago | (#45434373)

Yeah, right.

And exactly from where do you think all that "good and cheap" goodies you buy around you there in America comes from? Or do you think that Cisco have any manufacturing on EUA?

Speaking frankly, buying stuff directly from China will just cut off the man-in-the-middle money sucker on the manufacturing chain, also known as U.S.A.

*OF COURSE* that most of these devices are *INVENTED* by americans on America, and on the long run these same goodies will be deprecated without a proper (modern) replacement - but, as I had said, this will happens on the long run. On the short term, however, America will be screwed up relentlessly (but don't worry, the rest of us will follow short, unless we manage to really learn how to spend money on innovations - being this the real problem on Russia and Brazil).

Re:Buy Chinese... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434479)

I believe the OP was thinking about the risk of eavesdropping, not so much on quality.

The long term damage will be enormous (4, Insightful)

Sean (422) | about 5 months ago | (#45434225)

As soon as software catches up and makes it practical, the rest of the world is going to dump the US cloud forever.

I'm the only one smelling BS here? (3, Insightful)

Krneki (1192201) | about 5 months ago | (#45434231)

How much taxes is Cisco paying to the US government? Because if they pay like every other corporation (1%), then the fact that they now sell less won't have any repercussion on the tax income.

I still hate NSA, but this looks like two ass-holes pointing fingers at each other.

Re:I'm the only one smelling BS here? (0)

i kan reed (749298) | about 5 months ago | (#45434317)

Oh come on, the average corporate tax-to-profit ratio is really up near 25%ish. That doesn't mean that's the right number, or that there are no tax cheats, just that 1% is a fabrication.

Re:I'm the only one smelling BS here? (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434403)

"Cisco’s techniques cut the effective tax rate on its reported international income to about 5 percent since 2008 by moving profits from roughly $20 billion in annual global sales through the Netherlands, Switzerland and Bermuda"

cite [bloomberg.com]

Re:I'm the only one smelling BS here? (1)

fredrated (639554) | about 5 months ago | (#45434337)

Employees pay taxes, if they sell less gear they will employ fewer people that will collectively pay less in taxes.

Re:I'm the only one smelling BS here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434513)

so India is going to see tax revenue decrease?

Re:I'm the only one smelling BS here? (2)

compro01 (777531) | about 5 months ago | (#45434459)

Cisco sales go in the toilet -> Employees laid off -> no income/FICA tax from them.

Re:I'm the only one smelling BS here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434547)

That would suggest that Cisco has American employees.

Re:I'm the only one smelling BS here? (2)

PPH (736903) | about 5 months ago | (#45434463)

Stop measuring the economic contribution of an event solely in terms of tax revenue. Cisco pays salaries, purchases goods and services from subcontractors, pays dividends, etc. All contributions to the economy before the gov't takes its cut.

Re:I'm the only one smelling BS here? (1)

intermodal (534361) | about 5 months ago | (#45434603)

The corporate entity known as Cisco isn't the one who pays the taxes. Uncle Sam gets his cut when they pay their employees, shareholders (if they get payouts, of course), and in other regulatory fees.

Accounting is a strange world, my friend, but you'll find that in the big picture, Cisco is making a lot of money for the government even if they aren't paying it directly.

Re:I'm the only one smelling BS here? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434895)

Cisco isn't a Coop and doesn't pays its employees 100% of its profit. So you are looking at a smaller percentage of the salaries as tax.
The corporation part SHOULD also pay its part of taxes like every small companies that doesn't have the size/resources to do an international loop hole.

Re:I'm the only one smelling BS here? (1)

intermodal (534361) | about 5 months ago | (#45434969)

I disagree with your assertion of "should". If "should" were a valid argument, we'd have a very, very different world.

"A hungry man is an angry man" (2)

elloGov (1217998) | about 5 months ago | (#45434233)

Quoting Bob Marley, economy is the bloodline of any society. It's where the buck stops. I hope that our "patriotic"(nationalist) Orwellian ways can play a second fiddle to our economy. If not, we are paving our path to our own demise.

Re:"A hungry man is an angry man" (2)

Kjella (173770) | about 5 months ago | (#45434965)

Quoting Bob Marley, economy is the bloodline of any society. It's where the buck stops. I hope that our "patriotic"(nationalist) Orwellian ways can play a second fiddle to our economy. If not, we are paving our path to our own demise.

As long as it doesn't backfire in the public opinion, a lot of Americans might be sympathetic to exposing the extensive spying on others but when it starts hurting their own wallet is that anger going to be directed at Snowden or the NSA? I mean in the whole "Snowden - hero or traitor?" debate tanking the US economy is probably not a plus. Personally I think you'll get a lot of first-order reaction and the second-order reaction "But should we really have been spying in the first place?" will be much weaker, the reason the saying is "don't kill the messenger" is that people do have a tendency to want to kill the messenger. Doesn't matter how dirty the laundry you're airing is or how many skeletons were in your closest, it's the one who brings it out in the open who has to pay the price.

True (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434269)

That's true. Also is true the fact that once the Snowden documents were released, Google, FB and the rest of the pack created a special teams to manage the expected backfire, and here it comes, the fire.

Collateral damage (2)

jodido (1052890) | about 5 months ago | (#45434303)

These are the people who invented the phrase "destroy the village in order to save it"--do you think they give a shit about Cisco stock?

Re:Collateral damage (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434407)

"The world must be made safe from Democracy."

    -- Woodroe "Tommy" Wilson -- (father of the League of Nations)

This can't be what he had in mind, right?

Misleading Title (4, Funny)

thoth (7907) | about 5 months ago | (#45434329)

Harming America's economy? This is more about affecting Cisco's profits. And color me unsympathetic, as they are an "American" corporation (in scare quotes since it shifts as it suits them) when it comes time to complain about something, but they are apparently Swiss http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-06-28/biggest-tax-avoiders-win-most-gaming-1-trillion-u-s-tax-break.html [bloomberg.com] when its time to pay taxes.

Re:Misleading Title (4, Interesting)

0123456 (636235) | about 5 months ago | (#45434379)

This isn't just Cisco. No-one can trust US technology any more; they've got from the most trusted on the planet to, at best, no better than the Chinese, in the space of a few months.

Re:Misleading Title (4, Funny)

larry bagina (561269) | about 5 months ago | (#45434431)

And they're Greek when it comes to sex, if you know what I'm saying.

Edit: for those that don't know what I'm saying, Cisco likes to fuck you in the ass.

No shit ... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434371)

If the American security infrastructure is going to turn American corporations into de-facto arms of the intelligence process, then nobody has any choice but to not trust them.

Anything involved in the security of the internet that's been tainted by being complicit with the NSA et al can't be trusted. So Cisco is going to feel the pinch.

Anything in 'the cloud' ran by a US company is subject to PATRIOT Act demands. So Oracle, Microsoft, Amazon ... they're all going to feel the pinch. And Google's hosted solutions for email is also something you can't trust.

When the NSA undermines security for their own ends, then anything they've had a hand in can't be trusted.

So the end result is most governments and companies in other countries more or less have to look at any US player as not trustworthy, or actively hostile to your goals.

As long as you keep acting like your security trumps the sovereignty of everyone else ... well, the only answer is to say "OK, fuck you" and cut you out of the picture entirely.

All of your big corporations are more or less presumed to be lying (because they can't admit to participating in this), complicit with collecting data to send back to Big Brother, and violating local privacy and data access laws.

And since 'Murica has been railing about how the Chinese are infiltrating their stuff (while doing the same thing), and complaining about countries which restrict a free internet ... they've lost a position of having the moral high ground. The US is doing everything they accuse other countries of doing, only they're apparently doing it on a massive scale.

So, yes, this should have an impact on the US economy. And you can choose to stay the course and see it keep happening, or you can fix the problem. And so far, we've seen no evidence whatsoever there's any contrition or accepting that what they did was going to piss off everyone else.

But when all of those orders start getting cancelled, and new ones stop coming, don't stand around wailing about how unfair it is that people have decided they can't trust you and don't want your stuff.

But in a country which is actively ignoring its own Constitution and freedoms, I'm not expecting any meaningful introspection on behalf of the US. I'm expecting more bluster, claims about how everyone else is doing it, and continuing with the status quo.

I'm out! (3, Interesting)

snarfies (115214) | about 5 months ago | (#45434415)

When SOPA was a looming thing, I was in the market to move from shared hosting to a VPS, and so I made it a point to chose a VPS that was in another country.

Sadly, I chose the Netherlands, who are NSA collaborators. I'm just waiting for a specific piece of software to be released, and I'm out of there and on to a new server in a new country - I'm thinking Switzerland right now. Iceland is too expensive.

Just one more cost (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434439)

Those who insist on trading liberty for security will note this as just one more item in the cost column. Fear not, routers will get purchased, but built by Alcatel-Lucent, Brocade, Extreme Networks, Ericsson (SSR series), Huawei, Juniper Networks (T-series) or ZTE (ZXR10 series). Cisco puts backdoors into their routers and participate in the NSA's "Internet Kill Switch" which doesn't really kill the internet, just American parts of it.

So they are countering... (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 5 months ago | (#45434527)

So they are countering this bad press by open sourcing the system and inviting everyone to verify that their hardware is ait-tight secure, right? Right?

*crickets*

It's already too late (1)

Rigel47 (2991727) | about 5 months ago | (#45434553)

As much as I love my country and as much as I despise the rise of the MIC and the borderline treasonous activities of the NSA I don't think anything is going to change. The very nature of Government now is different. I'm not going to wax romantic about an imaginary time gone by when the Government was all humble and citizen-serving but it now has something of a life and intent of its own. The public is a captive source of funding and their desires mostly just aggravation when they run counter to the collective aims of the incestuous clique of government agencies and their contractors.

Throw in that accountability is mostly gone and there's absolutely no reason to believe anything with the NSA will change. They have nothing to fear. There will be a Congressional hearing or two, concerns will be expressed, they will emphasize "strict controls" and whatever other language seems appropriate. A committee will be formed that in six months to a year will produce a voluminous report nobody will read. Then the closed-door meetings will resume and the quasi-legal FISA courts will continue the rubber stamping. The only real hope is a true third party but the red/blue conglomerate will due whatever it takes to stop that from happening.

NSA Controlling Markets, Skimming Profits? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434561)

The NSA is financially omniscient. NSA monitors all electronic communications. NSA internal groups study economies, governments, and companies and especially financial firms.

Might not profits be made by using this deep insider information? Might not profits be used by the NSA to fund more secret projects, even projects unknown to their Executive Branch leadership? Might not employees of the NSA financially benefit even without the awareness of the NSA?

Could the reason economies are flat be that the NSA and it's employees are performing social and financial arbitrage, capturing all profits by using their intelligence to benefit from the otherwise-secret plans of corporations, governments and individuals before they are completed?

perspective (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | about 5 months ago | (#45434623)

its policies, and the politicians who support the same are directly responsible for massive losses of money and jobs

How does that compare to, say, the policies that have made offshoring lucrative, or the changes to depression-era rules that allowed the 2008 global economic meltdown?

Cisco Lawful Enforcement - read it (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434633)

For those curious how some of it is done, google "Cisco Lawful Enforcement"..

it's on Cisco's own site and public, but basically it shows they've pretty much incorporated backdoors for govt. They even have nifty pdfs describing how great and easy it is to comply with CALEA with it.

choice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434673)

these other countries that are dropping Cisco, have a choice. Its either the US watching them with Cisco devices or China watching them with Huawei hardware. Although I find it interesting that Canada chooses to incorporate a lot of Huawei devices in their telecommunications infrastructure.

Re: choice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45434735)

Hah! and immediately after posting, I see and popup ad for Telus. Lol'ing at the irony

True at least partially (3, Funny)

Dega704 (1454673) | about 5 months ago | (#45434693)

You could make the argument that this is overblown, but you cannot deny that it is true at least to some significant degree. The ironic part is how the U.S. government has been warning us about the coming cyber-apocalypse, and it turns out that they have done more to stoke those flames than anybody else.

This is The Cost of Freedom (1)

l0ungeb0y (442022) | about 5 months ago | (#45434755)

If these other Countries don't want to buy All-American products with Freedom® and Democracy® built-in, then they stand against us in our Global War of Terror

Encrypt everything (4, Insightful)

jones_supa (887896) | about 5 months ago | (#45434823)

We have found that we cannot trust the networks of ISPs anymore: there can be an NSA tap anywhere. A good and practical move would be to start using more and more robust end-to-end encryption. Things like SSL are possibly out of question as NSA has corrupted the root certs.

Re:Encrypt everything (1)

Jawnn (445279) | about 5 months ago | (#45434999)

Things like SSL are possibly out of question as NSA has corrupted the root certs.

[citation needed]

You're all going to jail! (2)

cardpuncher (713057) | about 5 months ago | (#45434903)

Listen up. Any news that casts an unfavourable light on the economy is a risk to your economic security. It must therefore be kept strictly secret. Anyone found spreading this unpatriotic propaganda is going to find themselves in a re-education camp.

Yours sincerely,

The government of North Korea^W^Wthe USA.

Cisco can sue (1)

EngineeringStudent (3003337) | about 5 months ago | (#45434921)

I wonder if Cisco can sue for damage to business. I know that if a government blunder cost me $35 billion, I would be pretty unhappy. Seriously that is nearly 12 US presidential elections bought worth of lost revenue.

If its made in the USA - I don't trust it (5, Interesting)

openthomas (2759671) | about 5 months ago | (#45434989)

These leaks have cost America the trust of an entire generation. In the last few months I deleted my gmail, linkedin, facebook, twitter, ebay and amazon accounts, and when my cellphone dies I won't buy another. If US companies deny their customers the basic human right that is dignity through privacy then it will be to their extreme financial loss. Personally I want no part of what these services have to offer because they do not respect me as a individual. I don't trust the hardware, the software, the services, the network, the companies or the government. And google can stick glass up their ass.

How do we know that Cisco, etc, has back-doors? (1)

volvox_voxel (2752469) | about 5 months ago | (#45435065)

It's not unreasonable that the NSA would have their own gear -- some kind of box connected in the middle. What evidence is there that cisco equipment has some kind of backdoor to the NSA, and this is not all FUD.. ?
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