We have long accepted that the government will spy on people when it becomes necessary. What we have not accepted is that every day citizens could soon become the object of this practice. Enter the newest addition to the NSA; Cryptologic Centers. These centers will be the official NSA centers that both gather and hold information from telephone calls, internet use and any data from the Deep Web. Regardless of whether or not the person using the service is doing some detriment to our country’s government, his/her data will be collected and kept for possible use against that person. What is this all about?
We have accepted that certain words are known triggers of NSA recordings. If the person who is monitoring the web sees anything that could possibly pertain to National Security he flags that information and it is passed on to the appropriate person. We all know not to make comments that could be misconstrue. It is the same principal as not being able to shout “Fire” in a crowded theater.
These new facilities are outfitted with the most modern equipment. The crypto analysis department made great inroads into the ability to break codes and break encrypted messages. These facilities have been built by the standards of Homeland Security and each one is reported to have cost more than $10 million for just the security system.
Facilities have been identified in Utah (new)Utah Data Ctr. , Washington state (Yakima Research Ctr.),NSA HQ in Maryland (old & new), Georgia Regional Security Op. Ctr. In Georgia, Kunia Regional Security Op Ct. (old) in Hawaii (new), Moycock Naval SIGINT Sta. in North Carolina, Hawaii Regional Security Op. Ctr. In Hawaii (new). There is also the NSA facility begun in 2010 in San Antonio, Tx. (new). Each private person in the United States is now under scrutiny through these facilities. What does this mean to you? It means that the normal person who writes a newspaper column or a blog on the internet is subject to this scrutiny and that their mildest criticism of the government’s handling of a problem could be misconstrued and that person, therefore, could be potentially charged as an enemy of the state. It is reminiscent of the television program currently on CBS entitled “Person of Interest” where clandestine cameras are positioned to “spy” on individuals and their data downloaded into a supercomputer that identifies them as a person-of-interest for some reason or other.
Many fans of suspense novels have heard of the Echelon program. Echelon is the Signals Intelligence collection and analytical program and network operated by five countries that are signatories to the security agreement of the UKUSA and passed in the year 2000. The use of satellites has made intelligence gathering an easier task than it was during WWII. The use of fiber optics has also made intelligence gathering easier. People may not be aware that even the electrical outlets in your home may be used by the intelligence community to gather data.
We have never been faced with the conundrum we have before us today. Through the auspices of the Homeland Security Act, Americans are living in an age when their privacy is no longer quite as private as before.
Since 9/11 we have been living in a world where things are quite different. The Homeland Security Act of 2002 was passed because of that terrible day.