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Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, Facebook, and LinkedIn will now be able to report on national security letters


 The US Justice Department announced Monday that it has agreed to allow tech companies to publicize - in limited capacity - how often they are required to hand over sensitive customer information to the government.

Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, Facebook, and LinkedIn will now be able to report on national security letters - in which information is demanded independent of court authority - as well as requests ordered by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court. Yet how they report will be limited to broad numerical ranges on the volume of orders and the number of accounts affected. More on this @RT   http://rt.com/usa/government-data-requests-disclosures-269/

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By Richard Esposito, Matthew Cole and Mark Schone, with Glenn Greenwald, Special Contributor  "The British government can tap into the cables carrying the world’s web traffic at will and spy on what people are doing on some of the world’s most popular social media sites, including YouTube, all without the knowledge or consent of the companies.

Documents taken from the National Security Agency by Edward Snowden and obtained by NBC News detail how British cyber spies demonstrated a pilot program to their U.S. partners in 2012 in which they were able to monitor YouTube in real time and collect addresses from the billions of videos watched daily, as well as some user information, for analysis. At the time the documents were printed, they were also able to spy on Facebook and Twitter"

http://investigations.nbcnews.com/_news/2014/01/27/22469304-snowden-docs-reveal-british-spies-snooped-on-youtube-and-facebook

Experts told NBC News the documents show the British had to have been either physically able to tap the cables carrying the world's web traffic or able to use a third party to gain physical access to the massive stream of data, and would be able to extract some key data about specific users as well.

Representatives of Facebook and Google, which owns YouTube, said they hadn't given the British government permission to access data and were unaware the collection had occurred. A source close to Google who asked not to be identified when discussing company policy said the company was "shocked" to learn the U.K. could have been "grabbing" its data.

Stashed in: privacy, Digital Age, social media, security, Privacy does not exist.

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This feels like progress. At least now companies are allowed to offer transparency.

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