The Register reporting on the latest articles published based on the Snowden document treasure trove, this time discussing how NSA can conduct surveillance on the entire internet without requiring a warrant:
Two memos released by ProPublica in cooperation with The New York Times show that in May 2012, the US Justice Department authorized the NSA to monitor domestic internet traffic as part of investigations into foreign hacking attacks. That authority was later extended to allow monitoring of IP addresses and “cybersignatures.”
A leaked slide deck explains how a lot of this stuff can be collected via the PRISM program, but that “thousands of non-PRISM domains, DNR collection, cyber signatures and IP addresses” were fair game. It added that authorities would like Dropbox to become a PRISM “partner.”
All of this can be done without a warrant under Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), which allows blanket collection of emails, phone calls, and internet traffic from the 6.81 billion people on the planet who aren’t members of the Land of the Free. The data is kept for five years, or indefinitely if national security is involved.
In another Snowden document, NSA states that it can carry out this monitoring from a variety of “chokepoints” on US telecommunications networks, and adds that it also shares this data with the FBI’s Engineering Research Facility in Quantico, VA.
Unconscionable but completely believable. If you are surprised by any new leaks originating from the documents Snowden turned over then you have not been paying attention.