NSA pulls in data from 50 companies

Marc Ambinder is reporting that the NSA internet surveillance program mines the data from at least 50 companies, including major credit card corporations, as part of the PRISM program. From the different types of data, including their credit card purchases, the locations they sign in to the internet from, and even local police arrest logs, the NSA can track people it considers terrorism or espionage suspects in near-real time. An internet geo-location cell is on constant standby to help analysts determine where a subject logs in from. Most of the collection takes place on subjects outside the U.S, but a large chunk of the world's relevant communication passes through American companies with servers on American soil. So the NSA taps in locally to get at targets globally. It is not clear how the NSA interfaces with the companies. It cannot use standard law enforcement transmission channels to do, since most use data protocols that are not compatible with that hardware....(Read Full Post)