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1 Thanos  Mar 23, 2015 2:14:54pm

Major problem with that diagram: it makes it appear that all domestic traffic is examined, which we know is false. The place this surveillance happens is at STP’s (or “Signal Transfer Points”) which is where traffic bidirectionally jumps over the national borders. That’s wrong and needs to be fixed to my mind, but there’s no need for them to create exaggerations like this to make a point.

2 Great White Snark  Mar 23, 2015 4:01:55pm

re: #1 Thanos

What exaggeration? It says copied, and that’s how it works.

Based on the black boxes/closet rooms they put at ISP’s there is good reason to think it works just like the diagram says, albeit supposedly with filters to discard strictly domestic communications. The idea is they grab it all and only look at what they are allowed to under the law. Well I’m not prepared to take them at their word. That’s why we need a DOJ to step up where a self governing / self disciplining organization does not do so.

is it smart to take a very powerful agencies word at what all they do and how they do it? Nope. I do not agree it is legal for them to examine my emails just because the recipient is not in the United States. What is the probable cause? It’s my private communication same as an overseas phone call to Grandma in Israel. (If I had one)

FISA has got to be trimmed back. The Patriot Act has gotta go as promised. The 100 mile border no warrant search zone is bullshit. The ACLU is right, we are getting screwed over. Time and time again. It’s a real shame Edward ran like the coward he is. He reduced the credibility of these accusations. Even the strongest of them.

Put another way, let’s ask the chief of Ferguson if he agrees with the DOJ report on his department. Now, let’s imagine we all just took his word for it, and not only that, he has the authority to classify the evidence to the contrary. Well played NSA well played.

3 Thanos  Mar 23, 2015 5:16:30pm

re: #2 Great White Snark

I spent the last 25 years working for a major telecom company, I think I know exactly how it works, and it’s not as depicted. most domestic traffic never touches the STP’s and other step off points.

It’s technology, it doesn’t racially profile, it’s nothing like Ferguson, so why bring that up?

4 Great White Snark  Mar 23, 2015 6:14:41pm

re: #3 Thanos

I spent the last 25 years working for a major telecom company, I think I know exactly how it works, and it’s not as depicted. most domestic traffic never touches the STP’s and other step off points.

It’s technology, it doesn’t racially profile, it’s nothing like Ferguson, so why bring that up?

It’s technology run by and for people. Which includes all their foibles. The point is taking the NSA’s word for how careful and law abiding they are is in principle just like listening to Ferguson PD, LAPD about excessive force incidents or the FBI about stingray. Outside verification is required for credibility. Frankly I trust the ACLU to be reasonably thorough before they file a lawsuit alleging what I said and the chart indicates. Traffic copied, filtered then read.

Okay you have the hands on experience. Does email traffic stay point to point. or does it route around based on traffic and bandwidth? How iis it your experience tells you what the black boxes nobody can touch or get the specs on even work? How is it you can be so certain domestic traffic is not ever copied?

You gave me the down ding, fine. Now back your assurance please. Educate me on network flow of emails so I can say I was wrong and back up. Not sarc, serious.

5 Great White Snark  Mar 23, 2015 7:01:43pm

Thanos, I don’t get why you conflate copied with examined. it’s the heart of our disagreement today.

6 Thanos  Mar 23, 2015 8:11:09pm

You don’t understand that the bulk of the domestic traffic doesn’t pass through the points. Only traffic destined for exit does. Picture a ring that circles the country… now picture other countries with other rings. For the rings to talk to each they talk through separate connections — the domestic traffic runs around the ring and never touches the connections to foreign rings unless it’s destined for foreign countries. It’s at the connections that the data is sniffed or whatever you wish to call it. Most border crossings I’ve seen have the egress routers firewalls etc. in a separate building, floor, or cage than the domestic traffic. There are many other reasons for that besides just the normal privacy laws (e.g. carriers can get in trouble & fined for dodging LEC access charges if they pump VOIP across borders and then back in.)

Ferguson PD, NSA: one of these things is not like the other. NSA has oversight from congressional committee, Ferguson PD does not. NSA requires FISA warrants, small town Ferguson PD does not. I could go on, but it’s just ludicrous to make that comparison, and that’s why you got the downding.

7 Great White Snark  Mar 23, 2015 8:36:10pm

re: #6 Thanos

You don’t understand that the bulk of the domestic traffic doesn’t pass through the points. Only traffic destined for exit does. Picture a ring that circles the country… now picture other countries with other rings. For the rings to talk to each they talk through separate connections — the domestic traffic runs around the ring and never touches the connections to foreign rings unless it’s destined for foreign countries. It’s at the connections that the data is sniffed or whatever you wish to call it. Most border crossings I’ve seen have the egress routers firewalls etc. in a separate building, floor, or cage than the domestic traffic. There are many other reasons for that besides just the normal privacy laws (e.g. carriers can get in trouble & fined for dodging LEC access charges if they pump VOIP across borders and then back in.)

Ferguson PD, NSA: one of these things is not like the other. NSA has oversight from congressional committee, Ferguson PD does not. NSA requires FISA warrants, small town Ferguson PD does not. I could go on, but it’s just ludicrous to make that comparison, and that’s why you got the downding.

inadequate oversight is inadequate

8 Great White Snark  Mar 23, 2015 9:06:57pm

re: #3 Thanos

It’s technology, it doesn’t racially profile, it’s nothing like Ferguson, so why bring that up?

Racial profiling is not the only thing wrong there.

9 Dark_Falcon  Mar 24, 2015 4:01:19pm

re: #8 Great White Snark

Racial profiling is not the only thing wrong there.

No one is saying that’s the only thing wrong. It’s just that domestic traffic between you and DL, for example, doesn’t pass through the collection points, while traffic heading out of the country does. That’s what Thanos is trying to say, and it makes the situation notable less dire than the displayed graph depicts it as being. At best, the graph has a significant error, at worst it is using deliberately ‘cooked’ data in order to get more attention.


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