Thursday, June 18, 2009


New York Times catches up to another bit of NSA domestic email surveillance

by Larry Geller

Yes, your emails are being collected and spied on.

NSA Database Collects Millions of Intercepted Emails

The New York Times has revealed that the National Security Agency is operating a secret surveillance database that contains millions of intercepted foreign and domestic emails. The NSA’s database, codenamed Pinwale, allows the NSA to search through millions of email messages, including correspondence to and from Americans. The Times reports the NSA database even includes some intercepted personal correspondence of former President Bill Clinton. [Democracy Now headlines, 6/18/2009]

This come as no surprise to Disappeared News readers. Articles here from at least as far back as February 2008 have pointed out that in order to find out whether an email is going to some terrorist overseas, the NSA has to open each and every email and read its headers. That’s how emails are routed through the system, by what it says in the headers inside the email. And they are storing them in a database because they are trying to deal with 40 trillion bits of data per second, which means putting them away to be checked as they can get to them.

Your email to Mom may be checked right away, in a couple of days, or who knows, in a couple of years. So be careful what you write to Mom about your political views [dear NSA: when you read this, no, I’m not using “Mom” as a secret code word, it’s a common abbreviation for one’s mother].

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