"There is a massive apparatus within the United States government that with complete secrecy has been building this enormous structure that has only one goal," journalist Glenn Greenwald recently told Piers Morgan (who knows all about spying and hacking people's private data). "And that is to destroy privacy and anonymity not just in the United States but around the world."
Tech companies rush to issue (false) denialsImmediately after these revelations surfaced over the past few days, all these companies began denying any involvement with the NSA. "Google CEO Larry Page and Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg are denying reports that depict two of the Internet’s most influential companies as willing participants in a secret government program that gives the National Security Agency unfettered access to email and other personal information transmitted on various online services," reports the San Francisco branch of CBS News.
But what nobody is yet revealing is that all these companies are required by law to LIE to their own customers about secret government surveillance.
The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, you see, makes it a federal crime for any company participating in the surveillance to publicly acknowledge the existence of that surveillance. Thus, executives at Facebook, Google, Skype and others would all face arrest and federal prosecution as "terrorists" if they admitted the truth to their own users.
That's just how far down the rabbit hole this government surveillance program goes: Not only does the government spy on you and everything you do -- "they quite literally can watch your ideas as you type" -- the government can also force all the tech companies cooperating with the spying to publicly deny the existence of the program.
But the New York Times -- yes, the NYT which hardly ever engages is actual journalism -- has gone public with an article confirming that these tech companies did, indeed, concede to the NSA surveillance program. "They opened discussions with national security officials about developing technical methods to more efficiently and securely share the personal data of foreign users in response to lawful government requests. And in some cases, they changed their computer systems to do so," says the NYT in an article titled Tech Companies Concede to Surveillance Program.
Except it wasn't just "foreign users," it turns out. The program quickly ballooned to encompass users in the United States, too. The NYT goes on to report:
In at least two cases, at Google and Facebook, one of the plans discussed was to build separate, secure portals, like a digital version of the secure physical rooms that have long existed for classified information, in some instances on company servers. Through these online rooms, the government would request data, companies would deposit it and the government would retrieve it, people briefed on the discussions said.
This is how companies like Google and Facebook can claim, with a straight face, that the NSA doesn't have "backdoor access to our servers." They don't need it! What actually happens is that Google, Facebook, Yahoo and others simply deposit all user data at another location -- a "gateway" where the NSA copies it off.
Now you understand how to correctly parse this fake denial by Google's chief executive Larry Page, who says, "The U.S. government does not have direct access or a 'back door' to the information stored in our data centers."
It doesn't need "direct access." It has INDIRECT access that was set up by Google!
Here's the slide from the top secret PRISM program that tells the truth. (Click here for the original source page at the Washington Post).