UK Let NSA 'Unmask' Its Citizens
Latest Snowden leak reveals US had access to Brits' personal data
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Nov 20, 2013 3:43 PM CST
This image made available by the Guardian shows an undated image of Edward Snowden.   (AP Photo/The Guardian, Ewen MacAskill)

(Newser) – The NSA has been collecting phone, internet, and email records on UK citizens who are not suspected of any wrongdoing, and storing them in databases that the rest of America's intelligence and military services can access—and British intelligence officials signed off on all of it, a newly leaked memo reveals. The 2007 memo, the latest Edward Snowden document published by the Guardian, states that UK officials have given the NSA the go-ahead to "unmask UK contact identifiers" in anything that it "incidentally collects."

Britain and the US are part of the "Five-Eyes" intelligence alliance, along with Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Member nations are supposed to "minimize" (strip out) any data they collect on each others' citizens. The memo indicates that Britain waived that requirement, but a separate draft memo indicates that the NSA had a procedure for secretly spying on Five-Eyes nations even if they hadn't given them permission. The information was then used to run "pattern of life" analyses, looking at people up to three "hops" (degrees of separation) removed from a target. A typical Facebook user has more than 5 million people within three "hops" of them. For much more, see the full story.

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Showing 3 of 7 comments
TwoSheds
Nov 25, 2013 8:07 PM CST
They probably all agreed to skirt the laws against spying on their own citizens by allowing other countries to spy on their citizens then sharing the data. They must be guilty of some really heinous crimes they are trying to hide if they are worried about the average citizen.
Ezekiel 25:17
Nov 23, 2013 2:23 PM CST
Every updated photo of him kind of makes me chuckle a bit. Dude's not getting any B-12 or sun very much. Oh sure he's living the luxury life in stark contrast to most Russians. He's in a luxury condo owned by Eugene Kaspersk and maintained by the FSB. He's working closely with FSB to come up with the best surveillance system to monitor US diplomatic and military traffic. That means a lot of time in dark rooms with multiple client workstations.
persimmone
Nov 20, 2013 11:44 PM CST
Edward Snowden is a louse! The ordinary citizen need have no fear of NSA, even if he/she were to patronize pornographic websites or engage in any form of titillating salacious activity. All NSA was interested in was terrorist activity, to help prevent a repeat of 9/11. What Snowden has done is to put the lives of millions, of you and I, at risk!