By Tabassum Zakaria , Mark Hosenball. National Security Agency went to unusual lengths on Friday to insist its activities are lawful and any mistakes largely unintentional. In a sign of how much heat it has taken since former NSA contractor Edward Snowden started disclosing details of highly classified U. The Washington Post late Thursday reported that the NSA had broken privacy rules or overstepped its legal authority thousands of times each year since , citing an internal agency audit and other top secret documents. Snowden, who was granted temporary asylum in Russia this month, gave information about secret NSA programs that collect phone, email and other communications to several media organizations, which published stories about them starting in June. His disclosures provoked an intense debate over privacy rights versus national security needs in the United States and several other countries, including Great Britain, Germany and Brazil.
National Security Agency - Wikipedia
The NSA is responsible for global monitoring, collection, and processing of information and data for foreign and domestic intelligence and counterintelligence purposes, specializing in a discipline known as signals intelligence SIGINT. The NSA is also tasked with the protection of U. Truman in Since then, it has become the largest of the U. SCS collection tactics allegedly encompass "close surveillance, burglary, wiretapping, [and] breaking and entering". The NSA is entrusted with providing assistance to, and the coordination of, SIGINT elements for other government organizations — which are prevented by law from engaging in such activities on their own.
Under fire, U.S. spy agency defends surveillance programs as lawful
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A report from researchers at Harvard University and Boston University warns that the National Security Agency could freely monitor the electronic communications of American citizens by rerouting Internet traffic through overseas networks. Federal intelligence services have greater legal latitude to conduct electronic surveillance outside the United States, the researchers said. If messages between two parties in the United States could be routed through foreign data centers, the NSA could scoop up the data without violating US law. Arnbak identified those loopholes in a paper he co-authored with Sharon Goldberg, a BU assistant professor of computer science the pair will present later in July at a conference in the Netherlands. Goldberg said they did not find any evidence that the NSA is actually rerouting Internet traffic.