From the “Oh and by the way” Department:
The National Security Agency and the FBI are tapping directly into the central servers of nine leading U.S. Internet companies, extracting audio, video, photographs, e-mails, documents and connection logs that enable analysts to track a person’s movements and contacts over time.
The highly classified program, code-named PRISM, has not been disclosed publicly before. Its establishment in 2007 and six years of exponential growth took place beneath the surface of a roiling debate over the boundaries of surveillance and privacy. Even late last year, when critics of the foreign intelligence statute argued for changes, the only members of Congress who knew about PRISM were bound by oaths of office to hold their tongues.
Reaction has been both subtle and nuanced.
Taste the rainbow. Data mine the rainbow.
Oh, and the tech companies supposedly involved are 100% flatly denying everything about this story, too.
[UPDATE] Annnnnnd there’s apparently more.
The National Security Agency’s monitoring of Americans includes customer records from the three major phone networks as well as emails and Web searches, and the agency also has cataloged credit-card transactions, said people familiar with the agency’s activities.
So, outraged members of Congress will sunset the Patriot Act rather than renewing it with veto-proof margins, right?