Monday, September 09, 2013

The NSA is in Your Smartphone

Think your smartphone is secure? Think again:

SPIEGEL has learned from internal NSA documents that the US intelligence agency has the capability of tapping user data from the iPhone, devices using Android as well as BlackBerry, a system previously believed to be highly secure. 

The United States' National Security Agency intelligence-gathering operation is capable of accessing user data from smart phones from all leading manufacturers. Top secret NSA documents that SPIEGEL has seen explicitly note that the NSA can tap into such information on Apple iPhones, BlackBerry devices and Google's Android mobile operating system.

 The documents state that it is possible for the NSA to tap most sensitive data held on these smart phones, including contact lists, SMS traffic, notes and location information about where a user has been.
The documents also indicate that the NSA has set up specific working groups to deal with each operating system, with the goal of gaining secret access to the data held on the phones.
In the internal documents, experts boast about successful access to iPhone data in instances where the NSA is able to infiltrate the computer a person uses to sync their iPhone. Mini-programs, so-called "scripts," then enable additional access to at least 38 iPhone features.
 There is an obvious national security interest in being able to access data on the smartphones of people with terror ties, but this can be done by warrant after evidence is presented. There is no national security interest in collecting data from every smartphone and being able to access the data on those phones. It's an unconstitutional breach of the privacy of every American with a smartphone brought to you by the administration of Barack the Terrible.

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