The US National Security Agency (NSA) reveals that it is purchasing Americans' internet browsing history data without a warrant

Paul Nakasone , director of the National Security Agency (NSA), the intelligence agency of the U.S. Department of Defense, purchased a huge amount of commercially available 'American Internet browsing history data' without a warrant. I revealed what I was doing.

Wyden Releases Documents Confirming the NSA Buys Americans' Internet Browsing Records; Calls on Intelligence Community to Stop Buying US Data Obtained Unlawfully From Data Brokers, Violating Recent FTC Order | US Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon stop-buying-us-data-obtained-unlawfully-from-data-brokers-violating-recent-ftc-order

NSA is buying Americans' internet browsing records without a warrant | TechCrunch

In a letter to Senate Intelligence Committee member and Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden, Nakasone said the NSA does not purchase commercially available Internet browsing history data of Americans without a warrant. It is revealed that

Nakasone said the NSA purchases various types of information from data brokers for use in foreign intelligence, cybersecurity, and authorized missions. Some of the data being purchased is collected from devices used outside the United States, but it also appears to include data collected from devices used within the United States.

'The NSA purchases and uses commercially available Netflow data related to entirely domestic Internet communications and Internet communications where one side of the communication is a U.S. Internet Protocol address and the other side is overseas,' Nakasone said in the letter. 'I'm working on it.'

Netflow contains non-content information (metadata) about the flow and volume of Internet traffic on a network, revealing things like where an Internet connection came from and which servers a server passed the data to. Become. Netflow can also be used to track network activity traffic through VPNs, which can help identify servers and networks used by malicious hackers.

In a response letter to

the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), which oversees U.S. intelligence agencies, Wyden said, 'Metadata on the Internet can potentially identify Americans, so location information 'It may be highly confidential as well.' Additionally, 'Internet browsing history data is collected from sites on the Internet, such as mental health-related websites, websites for victims of sexual assault and domestic violence, and even websites related to telehealth providers specializing in childbirth. 'They can reveal sensitive information about individuals based on where they access them,' he said, criticizing the NSA's practices.

Wyden said he learned in March 2021 that the NSA was collecting internet browsing history data, but could not make the information public until the information was declassified. . As a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Mr. Wyden is authorized to receive and read classified information but cannot share it publicly. Wyden said the NSA declassified the information after he put the nomination of the next NSA director on hold.

The fact that American intelligence agencies purchase large amounts of commercially available data from private data brokers was first made

public by ODNI in June 2023. However, at this point, details such as ``Which American intelligence agency was purchasing the data?'' were not disclosed. In disclosing the facts, ODNI also noted that the off-the-shelf data it purchases from private data brokers 'offers clear intelligence value' and 'raises serious privacy and civil liberties questions.' was doing.

In addition, foreign media TechCrunch said, ``The NSA is not the only one that uses commercially available data for intelligence gathering and research. Previous reports have stated that the Defense Intelligence Agency will use commercially available data to collect information on Americans in 2021.'' Commercial databases have been shown to be accessed without a warrant . Elsewhere, the Internal Revenue Service has used location information purchased from data brokers to identify suspects , and Homeland Security The department also uses data from tracking illegal immigrants without a warrant .

The use of commercially available data by American intelligence agencies has raised questions about the legality of their actions. In a letter to ODNI, Wyden cited the Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) latest enforcement actions against data brokers, calling into question the 'legality' of government agencies purchasing access to Americans' data. raises serious questions about the

In January 2024, the FTC barred data broker I ordered it deleted . A week later, the FTC filed a similar lawsuit against another data broker, InMarket, barring it from selling consumers' precise location information .

TechCrunch points out that because of these cases, it is ``legally gray'' for the NSA to purchase and use commercially available data.

Government agencies typically must secure a court-approved warrant to obtain American personal information from cell phones and tech companies. However, US government agencies claim that precise location information and Netflow data are commercially available, so they do not need a warrant to obtain them. However, this theory has not yet been tried in an American court at the time of writing.

In his letter, Wyden called on ODNI to implement policies that would allow intelligence agencies to only purchase data that meets the FTC's lawful data sales standards, and if this cannot be accomplished, agencies must claims that it needs to be removed. Mr. Wyden also argues that if American intelligence agencies need this data, there is no need to broadly notify the public, but they should at least notify Congress.

The NSA has not disclosed which providers it purchases commercially available Internet data from, and although a spokesperson for the agency acknowledged that it purchases commercially available Netflow, Director Nakasone's statement refuses to comment.

in Note, Posted by logu_ii