As our privacy continues to be invaded by the out-of-control NSA, more details continue to surface about their questionable actions. Released by Edward Snowden, a new report reveals that the agency has repeatedly posed as Facebook in order to install malware capable of spying on computer users. They’ve also been hacking into virtual private networks, and between 85,000 and 100,000 computers have been affected worldwide.
Using a program known as TURBINE, the agency has been contaminating computers and networks with implants that can spy on users. They agency also rerouted orders of online computer purchases in order to install spy-ware and other malicious hardware as well. These new operational details, revealed by Snowden, add to a growing list of worrisome trends that the agency will continue to work in violation of the law and demands of the public who have repeatedly called for an end to the unconstitutional spying. They do this despite mountains of psychological research showing the importance of privacy and the negative effects of panopticism.
By using automated systems, the agency can covertly hack into and monitor computers, and phones, on a mass scale. If your computer is targeted, they could retrieve your personal files and information, activate your web camera, record audio from your microphone, and more. Facebook has denied that they were aware of any such actions by the NSA.
The agency has also denied the allegations, despite the detailed illustrations from the NSA’s presentation demonstrating how the implants operate, which was released by former analyst Edward Snowden. Keep in mind that NSA public statements aren’t tantamount to the truth, this denial is coming from the same agency that denied the existence of the PRISM spying program to the American public and authorities, right before Snowden started to released the evidence proving otherwise. Within this system: problems and mistakes are simply denied, thrown down the memory hole, instead of actively investigated or fixed.
Following the expose, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg lashed out at Obama over the NSA spy program by posting a plea on his account, pressing the need for government transparency:
“As the world becomes more complex and governments everywhere struggle, trust in the internet is more important today than ever,…. The internet is our shared space. It helps us connect. It spreads opportunity. It enables us to learn. It gives us a voice. It makes us stronger and safer together…
This is why I’ve been so confused and frustrated by the repeated reports of the behavior of the US government. When our engineers work tirelessly to improve security, we imagine we’re protecting you against criminals, not our own government,… The US government should be the champion for the internet, not a threat.” Zuckerberg stated.
Regardless of Zuckerberg’s attempt at damage control, an increasing number grow weary of using and posting personal information on the site or internet in general; those aware of the spying revelations. But, until the full development of more advanced AI capable of truly understanding all our data, we need not cower in our boots. In fact, the period of time between the exposure of these programs, and the implementation of a largely automated police state, might be the only time we have available to change the course.