Keith Alexander

17 Stories

John Oliver Mocks Ex-NSA Chief to His Face

Confrontational interview a highlight of debut show

(Newser) - John Oliver's new HBO show debuted last night, and it featured possibly the most aggressive interview anyone's managed with former NSA Chief Keith Alexander. Almost all of Oliver's questions were barbed ("What would you like Snowden to know right now, other than significantly less?"), and... More »

Amnesty for Snowden? NSA Bosses Split

They fear he could reveal 'road map' of US know-how

(Newser) - 60 Minutes last night offered a window into the NSA's thinking on how to handle Edward Snowden and his cache of information. In an interview, Rick Ledgett, head of the task force investigating Snowden's impact, didn't rule out the possibility of amnesty, per CNET : It's... More »

Obama Task Force Leak: Get Leash on NSA

They want public defenders to argue for the spied upon

(Newser) - A presidential task force plans to call for sweeping changes to the way the NSA does business, including steps to make it more transparent and to increase White House oversight, according to reports today in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal . The panel of five intelligence and legal... More »

NSA Chief Offered to Quit, Obama Said No: Report

Agency struggles to get back on its feet after revelations

(Newser) - With the NSA reeling from Edward Snowden's leaks, its leader offered to step down—but the White House quickly put the kibosh on that idea, an administration source tells the Wall Street Journal . Gen. Keith Alexander's offer followed Snowden's entrance into the spotlight in June, notes the... More »

Google's Schmidt: NSA Spying 'Outrageous'

Agency head refutes reports

(Newser) - Google's executive chairman is weighing in on reports that the NSA hacked reams of data from his company and Yahoo: "It's really outrageous that the National Security Agency was looking between the Google data centers, if that's true," Eric Schmidt tells the Wall Street Journal... More »

NSA: We Didn't Spy on Europeans; Europe Did

Alexander refutes recent reports about US snooping overseas

(Newser) - Residents of Spain, France and elsewhere in Europe are outraged over reports that the NSA spied on millions of phone calls there. Turns out, it wasn't the NSA that collected all that phone information—it was the Europeans' own governments, reports the Los Angeles Times . The recent news reports,... More »

Architects of NSA Spying Strategy Are Leaving

Chief Keith Alexander and deputy Chris Inglis are stepping down

(Newser) - Fallout from the Edward Snowden revelations ? NSA chief Keith Alexander and his top civilian deputy are leaving the agency, reports Reuters . Alexander, whose eight-year reign is the NSA's longest, is expected to be gone by next spring. Deputy Chris Inglis, who has served since 2006, will be gone... More »

NSA Chief: Phone-Tracking Was Just a Test

Agency wanted to see if it could be done, he says

(Newser) - Top US intelligence officials are revealing more about their spying in an effort to defend the National Security Agency from charges that it has invaded the privacy of Americans on a mass scale. But the latest disclosure—that the NSA tried to track law-abiding Americans' cell phone locations—is only... More »

Yet Another NSA Target: Employees' Lovers

Also, director says 'no upper limit' on how many phone records can be kept

(Newser) - We've heard that the NSA kept an eye on Martin Luther King and Muhammad Ali , but it seems there were also lower-profile targets: some of its own employees' lovers. It's referred to as "loveint" (as in, collecting intel on love interests), and the NSA says it's... More »

NSA Chief Built Star Trek-Inspired War Room

Had 'Information Dominance Center' made by Hollywood set designer

(Newser) - Buried in a lengthy Foreign Policy profile on NSA chief Gen. Keith Alexander is this fascinating tidbit: When running the US Army's Intelligence and Security Command, he had its base of operations at Fort Belvoir—called the Information Dominance Center—built to look like the bridge of the USS... More »

NSA Chief's Attitude: Forget Needle, Collect Haystack

WaPo profiles chief Keith Alexander, finds origins of strategy in Iraq

(Newser) - Those looking to track the origins of the NSA's sweeping surveillance programs would do well to check out a 2005 program in Iraq called the Real Time Regional Gateway. As the Washington Post explains, it was put into place by NSA chief Gen. Keith Alexander to collect data on... More »

Report: Firm That Does US Background Checks Cut Corners

Company allegedly skipped second step, says Washington Post

(Newser) - We already knew Edward Snowden was hired by NSA contractor Booz Allen even though his resumé had issues —but the mess surrounding how Snowden got top-secret clearance grows. The Washington Post reports that USIS, another contractor that screened Snowden for the clearance, allegedly told the government its background checks... More »

NSA: Spying Foiled Stock Exchange Bomb Plot

Agency defends itself in congressional hearing

(Newser) - The NSA's controversial spying activities have prevented more than 50 terror attacks since 9/11, the agency's director told the House Intelligence Committee today, including attempted bombings of the New York Stock Exchange and, as previously disclosed , the New York City Subway. Gen. Keith Alexander said he'd go... More »

Mikulski Halts Hearing ... to Rebut a Tweet

She responds to a BuzzFeed reporter's criticism

(Newser) - Today's appearance by the NSA chief on Capitol Hill didn't produce many surprises—he said data mining is necessary and used in such a way that it doesn't invade privacy—but it did produce one strange moment featuring Sen. Barbara Mikulski. At one point, the Maryland... More »

NSA Chief: Surveillance Stopped 'Dozens' of Plots

Gen. Keith Alexander defends data mining

(Newser) - The head of the NSA told a Senate panel today that his agency's controversial surveillance had helped prevent "dozens of terrorist events," reports the Wall Street Journal . Gen. Keith Alexander said he couldn't go into specifics but was working to declassify some of the details. He... More »

US Spy Chiefs: Cyber Threat Is on Par With Terrorism

Cyber Command looks to go on offense

(Newser) - With China , Iran , and other countries increasingly hacking the United States, its infrastructure, and its companies, the Pentagon is stepping up its cyber defense operations in a major way—provided Washington's budget battles don't hamstring its efforts, reports the Washington Post . Gen. Keith Alexander, the head of the... More »

Pentagon to Create 'Digital Warfare Force'

(Newser) - The US military is creating a digital warfare force as part of a complete reorganization of its cyber operations, says NSA director and top cyber warfare commander Keith Alexander. In blunt testimony prepared for the House Armed Services subcommittee today, Alexander says the Pentagon’s current cyber training is woefully... More »

17 Stories