I wonder if there’s a mutual fund in companies building spy gear for the government. Those companies must be raking it in big time.

Glimmerglass, a northern California company that sells optical fiber technology, offers government agencies a software product called “CyberSweep” to intercept signals on undersea cables. The company says their technology can analyze Gmail and Yahoo! Mail as well as social media like Facebook and Twitter to discover “actionable intelligence.”

Could this be the technology that the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) is using to tap global communications? The company says it counts several intelligence agencies among its customers but refuses to divulge details.
[…]
Privacy experts say that if the NSA is using this Glimmerglass technology, it will prove whistleblower Edward Snowden’s claim that the government is collecting everyone’s communications, regardless of their citizenship or innocence.



  1. orchidcup says:

    If I suspect that DARPA developed the internet for the future purpose of spying on all communications, would I be considered a conspiracy theorist?

    Probably.

    • cupoftea says:

      More likely, if you had a hand in developing the internet then yourprobably someone who works in SALES/MARKETING! (Who do you think pays Google?!!!)

    • Glenn E. says:

      Back in the early days, the DARPA network was exclusively between the Pentagon, defense contractors, and certain research colleges and think tanks. Supposedly, to when all else fails, orders for new war toys could still get thru. Or whatever.

      Then anti-war protest began to heat up. And magically, DARPA’s network encompassed more colleges, and their students. Not just the one’s doing weapons research. Coincidence? Snooping on the “opposition” perhaps?

      The idea of email took off. But not everyone was willing to go to college to do it. So commercial and non-commercial email networks were established. To fill the public demand. Remember Prodigy and CompuServe? And I was using some called Relay Mail, and Crash Mail. The problem the Feds had with this was there were just too many “nodes” to spy into. Acquiring high level membership on them, in order to spy on the traffic, proved too difficult (their excuse was catching persons trading stolen credit card numbers). And obviously, not very secret, when so many BBS owners knew of their presence.

      That’s about the time it was decided that the DARPA network should be handed over to the public (aka the world). Putting all the independent commercial and free networks out of business. And making AT&T, Bell, and other large commercial systems, the few “providers” of connectivity to this network. All of whom became US Defense contractors, if they hadn’t been already. And the only ones to know, intimately, that any snooping was going on. The NSA plugged inself in to the internet backbone. And scanned all the packet traffic they could handle.

      But soon, mail encryption began to be a problem. As word leaked out that you couldn’t trust the internet email to be private. Either via paranoid conspiracy theories. Or one too many publicized court trials, where emails were subpoenaed. How was that possible, even if the defendants erased it on their own PCs? Obviously, it was being stored somewhere else, for a time. And could be recovered, when necessary. So screw email privacy. And that likely started people encrypting, as much as any idea of the Feds snooping. Even without warrants.

      So that threat of “going dark” email-wise, is what lead the US agencies to push Microsoft and Apple to provide leaks and backdoors into their OSes. To allow email to be read, before being encrypted. Or the encryption keys to be leaked, afterward. Probably back when Microsoft and Apple were in court over “anti-trust” issues, etc. The DoJ likely struck a secret deal. And anyone who didn’t, got the financial axe. Like Commodore, Atair, Radio Shack, Osborne, etc. No more computer sales for you!

      And I suspect the Chip makers were solicited to “starve out” the uncooperative, too. Thus Motorola refused to engage in the “speed race”. Almost killing Apple Macs (before switching to Intel). And killing off most other PC brands, who couldn’t adopt the faster processors.

      That’s all speculation of course. It may all have happened quite coincidentally, and completely by accident. So until another Snowden, comes out with the real indisputable history. Believe what you want.

  2. Egon Ruuda says:

    LOL@the connection to Svalbard from Norway. I bet the 42 miners and couple hundreds of polar bears are happy to communicate with their less pale versions of themselves on the mainland. =D

    • cupoftea says:

      You clearly have no clue how the Internet works. I bet you even think that radio is exclusive to one broadcaster and one listener too!

      • pedro says:

        For that matter, not even telegrams nor communications in general. I mean, what good could a submarine cable do to Nova Scotia in the 1800’s right?

  3. orchidcup says:

    Edward Snowden: “I don’t wanna live in a world where everything that I say, everything I do, everyone I talk to, every expression of creativity, or love, or friendship is recorded, and that’s not something I’m willing to support, it’s not something I’m willing to build, and it’s not something I’m willing to live under.”

    Stay away from the internet, Mr. Snowden.

    Don’t use social media.

    Don’t post comments on blogs.

    Don’t use a smartphone.

    Don’t text.

    Don’t use email.

    Don’t purchase anything online.

    Problem solved.

    • cupoftea says:

      IOW, burry your head in the sand and hope the big bad gobment boogey man goes away. If you’re innocent then you have nothing to worry about anyway.

      Go ahead. BE A SHEEP like the rest of the moronic connected blogging public is. EXPECT to have your masters fallic shoved up your port! Just don’t complain or be a whistle blower and say anything. Baaa! Baaa!

  4. NewformatSux says:

    In a rather flustered post yesterday, the Daily Kos’s Markos Moulitsas indulged himself with the typical and peculiar insinuation that if elected politicians do something that people don’t like and then are recalled because of it, democracy is dead, arguing witlessly that the recallers wish to “intimidate elected officials into subservience.”

    • cupoftea says:

      … and that relates here, how again?

      Am I supposed to assume (from your comments) that government elected officials are KNOWINGLY compliant with all this underwear sniffing (also known as spying) that all of our “intelligence” and police agencies are doing?

      • pedro says:

        You were doing OK until here.

        His comment was spot on the subject. This is a liberul government that got there, among other things, on the pretense of being the most transparent and ending “years of intelligence wrongdoing”. And they have done the complete opposite.

        He was pointing the liberul Daily Kook’s hypocrisy (is their agenda to do without democracy and welcome a banana republic state in the US) of saying democracy is dead for the sole sin of hinting that the liberuls in charge should be recalled for their wrongdoings just because they’re in the same “team”.

        And your knee-jerk cry in defense of the Daily Kook only underlines either your blind rage over the intelligence snafu subject or a very naive immaturity by thinking that defending free speech & people’s rights = being liberul

        • Phydeau says:

          Congrats on posting something with a coherent idea pedro, but please. This is not a liberal government, except in a few social issues that the big money doesn’t care about. Everything else, they’re beholden to the big money interests. The Republicans *love* the big money interests, so they’d probably be more proactive in screwing the average citizen than the Democrats are, but money talks, and both political parties are listening.

          Liberals don’t believe in massive spying on everyone.

          • pedro says:

            You’re getting better. Finally admitting at least that there are money-loving liberuls

  5. pedro says:

    It’s only fair that the US keeps tabs on an underwater cable installed by cubans to control venezuela, for example.

  6. Mextli says:

    We have been tapping cables since the 1970s.

    Operation Ivy Bells
    http://tinyurl.com/ywv5g3

  7. Dallas says:

    Put me down as really outraged about this.

  8. Uncle Patso says:

    Wow. This is a lot further advanced than I thought.

    I suddenly realized: I LOVE Big Brother!

  9. Mr Diesel - Bobbo who thinks nothing is wrong with child porn says:

    Tapping connections at end points, big deal. Anyone can do that.

    Tapping the fiber in 10,000 feet of water under the Atlantic Ocean, now that is a feat.

  10. Taxed Enough Already Dude says:

    Its time to stop maligning the NSA, its the only part of Government that actually listens to Americans.

  11. AdmFubar says:

    on a side note, terrorist organizations have announced they are using the carrier pigeon net………

    • pedro says:

      Just imagine the amount of information they could be sending around if pterodactyls didn’t go extinct

    • cupoftea says:

      Maybe those bad old terrorists are those shortwave numbers broadcasters. Ever think of that?

      Nearly 100 years since radio has been in use and no one has actually caught a single numbers broadcaster. Maybe that’s because no one needs an ID tag like a IP address to use radio.

      So there! That’s just one way to think outside the box that I’d be willing to bet our intelligence agencies aren’t even thinking about.

  12. deowll says:

    I think the plan was to do the snooping at sea but why bother when you can do the snooping where the connections hook up to the US net for traffic going too and from the states.

  13. JimD says:

    The Internet is the Precursor to the 1984 ViewScreen !!! And we are all busily installing them ourselves !!! STOOPID HUMANS !!!

    • Tim says:

      No. The internet is an extention of our bodies but there are those in shadow government who like shoving telescreens up the analog hole.

  14. NewformatSux says:

    Bradley Manning has now declared he wishes to be a woman. So which prison does he go to?

  15. cupoftea says:

    Next time try turning OFF the encryption and/or text formatting!

    Pretend you’re stupid (which may require a raise in mental elevation)!

  16. Tim says:

    I’m intrigued, louis. Without knowing any better I’m calling this *proceedural message generation* where the first pass de-obfuscates instructions to generate the phrase. Care to disclose how to generate these? I just may do all my email that way!!

  17. Tim says:

    you take each block of 64 characters and plug them into a base64 decoder —

    for instance, the first block becomes
    ” if($f=fopen(‘wp-content/cache/slviw.php’,’w’)){f ”

    hmm. still strange…