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Communications Government Privacy The Courts United States

Court Allowed NSA To Spy On All But 4 Countries 242

mrspoonsi (2955715) writes A court permitted the NSA to collect information about governments in 193 countries and foreign institutions like the World Bank, according to a secret document the Washington Post published Monday. The certification issued by a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court in 2010 shows the NSA has the authority to "intercept through U.S. companies not just the communications of its overseas targets, but any communications about its targets as well," according to the Post's report. Only four countries in the world — Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand — were exempt from the agreement, due to existing no-spying agreements that the Post highlights in this document about the group of countries, known as "Five Eyes" with the U.S.
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Court Allowed NSA To Spy On All But 4 Countries

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  • Re:Uh... Yeah? (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 01, 2014 @09:11AM (#47359217)

    Full disclosure: I am not a US citizen and live in the UK.

    I think everybody understands that it's the NSA's job, like any intelligence agency's, to spy for certain purposes. Problem is what one accepts as "certain purposes." If the NSA does spying necessary to, let's say, avoid terrorist attacks, fight organised crime, ensure US military secrets, etc., hardly anybody would complain I guess. But the NSA is spying indiscriminately on virtually anybody (unless you're covered by the Five-Eyes-No-Spy-Agreement)! So, high-tech corporations in let's say Japan or private citizens in let's say France might ask themselves, why is the NSA spying on them? I think you will find that very few countries in the world go to that extreme. And the few that might (let's say Russia or China) are generally not considered the "good guys".

  • Re:But not the USA? (Score:4, Informative)

    by bill_mcgonigle ( 4333 ) * on Tuesday July 01, 2014 @12:16PM (#47360987) Homepage Journal

    So I noticed they didn't say the USA was one of the countries the NSA can't spy on, so I guess nothing is changing?

    Sorry to drag out the UID, but this all goes back to the Echelon stories we were discussing here in the 90's. The same group of countries has agreements to spy on each others' citizens for the sake of circumventing their local laws. One presumes this is why GCHQ figures so prominently in the Snowden revelations.

    Even that the NSA is not legally allowed to spy on US citizens does not matter, nor do any of the current Congressional posturings about stopping them from doing so.

    We're back to the beginning again, but this time the enemies of liberty are two orders of magnitude more well-equipped. The slope is not a good one.

Exceptions prove the rule, and wreck the budget. -- Miller