Wednesday, January 15, 2014

The Day We Fight Back

Only in todays NYTIMES, January 15, 2004, we learned from David E. Sanger and Thom Shanker from a report based in part by documents leaked by Edward Snowden:
The National Security Agency has implanted software in nearly 100,000 computers around the world that allows the United States to conduct surveillance on those machines and can also create a digital highway for launching cyberattacks. While most of the software is inserted by gaining access to computer networks, the N.S.A. has increasingly made use of a secret technology that enables it to enter and alter data in computers even if they are not connected to the Internet."
If you link to the article, you will see the schematic of the system which has been under development and in place since 2006. This is just the latest in the unfolding parade of violations by the NSA with the cooperation of governments all over the world in eroding you right to privacy and a free and open internet. BTW, The Freedom of the Press Foundation,  today announced that Edward Snowden has joined its board of directors. The announcement is here. Charlie Savage at the New York Times writes about it here. The Huffington Post's item is here. Here's CNN, and here's Politico, and here's theWashington Post. Below, a video of Daniel Ellsberg speaking on Jake Tapper's CNN show about the Snowden news, and the intergenerational fight for government transparency and against corruption in America.

Also this week, a new Qunnipiac poll: Americans now consider Snowden to be more of a whistleblower than traitor by a huge margin: 57-34%.
Perhaps it is entirely appropriate at this point in time, a little over a year, we found out that Reddit co-founder and internet activist Aaron Swartz had taken his own life in the face of overly zealous prosecutors who told him he faced 50 years in prison for releasing free education documents on the internet. 
The loss of Swartz is really incalcuable as we hurtle through the digital age without stopping to address issues like privacy, piracy, access and data collection. But Aaron, to his credit, saw those obstacles and tried to flag them for us to slow down and address. 

A documentary honoring his life and work is currently in production (and you can be part of it via Kickstarter) and a preview shows how--much before Edward Snowden came to our awareness--he was aware of the inherent problem of NSA's data collection:
“It is shocking to think that the accountability is so lax that they don’t even have sort of basic statistics about how big the spying program is,” Swartz says of the NSA in the documentary clip. “If the answer is, ‘Oh, we’re spying on so many people we can’t possibly even count them,’ then that’s an awful lot of people.” He adds that the fact that the agency can’t put any number on the amount of people their surveillance reaches is “scary.”

The clip also covers Swartz’s involvement in the SOPA blackout protest, which occurred in January of 2012. A group of internet activists have deemed February 11th, 2014 “The Day We Fight Back”, which will feature online protest against mass surveillance in Swartz’s honor. Please consider joining in this effort, if you click on the link, you will find out how to keep updated and what you can do where ever you are on this planet to support this Day Of Resistance!

1 comment:

Ol'Buzzard said...

None of this surprises me: as our abilities and hardware grow more sophisticated of course we would use it. This is the new age.

Unbelievable military anti-personnel equipment is just over the horizon. And we will use that also.
the Ol'Buzzard