A top secret court order (top secret doesn't seem to have the same ring to it when you find out about it) requiring Verizon to hand over all call data shows scale of domestic surveillance under the Obama Administration.
The National Security Agency is currently collecting the telephone records of millions of US customers of Verizon, one of America's largest telecoms providers, under a top secret court order issued in April.
The order, a copy of which has been obtained by the Guardian (UK Newspaper), requires Verizon on an "ongoing, daily basis" to give the NSA information on all telephone calls in its systems, both within the US and between the US and other countries.
The document shows for the first time that under the Obama administration the communication records of millions of US citizens are being collected indiscriminately and in bulk – regardless of whether they are suspected of any wrongdoing.
So that's us normal people - which are all apparently capable of turning terrorist at any second.
- Also: Telephone metadata and what it can tell the authorities about you -- The Guardian
- Bonus: The Verizon court order in full is here
Here's why there's some meat to this scandal: Verizon was choke held to give out the "meta data" following the Boston Bombing. But rather than taking, say, Boston area customer's data, they took all of it. All of it. And guess what? It's all totally legal thanks to the Patriot Act of 2001. I'm kind of shocked they don't have all the phone calls since the dang bill passed, actually. What's a little 4th and 5th amendment? Just a minor speed bump to leap over. But why is this scandal the one that people start caring about? Just look at your Facebook feed this morning (yes, the dripping irony of that could only be funnier if I said your google+ account...)
Plus, Mr. Obama - he HAD to know this one was happening - and approve of it. A sign off, if you will. Will it hurt him? Nah. This one slides easily into the Bush's Fault® canned response.
BTW - the government knows who you called and where you were when you called them. If you didn't already know this - all of your calls (and your GPS coordinates ) are being monitored and stored by the your U.S. government. You know, for your own good. You'd think with all this data, the government would be much better at the war on terrorism?
Thank goodness the British newspaper The Guardian for doing their job - Lord knows the American press isn't up to the task. And double plus good to the unknown patriot who exposed this U.S. government Verizon spy program. Unknown, until they pour over all that metadata, that is.