How do I love thee? Let the National Security Agency count the ways. On at least twelve occasions in the past ten years, NSA employees illegally listened in on phone calls of girlfriends, boyfriends, husbands, wives, spouses, and engaged in other "intentional" authority abuses, according to a letter just released from the agency's inspector general. Michael Isikoff at NBC News reports that the NSA also has two open investigations into alleged misuse of its eavesdropping authorities and is reviewing a third one for possible investigation.
[Dr. George Ellard]'s letter – in response to an inquiry by GOP Sen. Charles Grassley – was prompted by media reports that NSA employees at times have been caught in what is informally known as "loveint" – collecting intelligence on love interests. But until now, the specific examples and the frequency of such cases have never been disclosed by the NSA.
In one case revealed by Ellard, an NSA employee for five years snooped on the phone calls of nine female foreign nationals "without a valid foreign intelligence purposes." In another, 2011 instance, an NSA employee admitted it was "her practice" to eavesdrop on foreign phone numbers "she obtained in social settings" in order to ensure she was not talking to “shady characters.'' Both employees resigned before any disciplinary action could be taken.
Full story: 'Loveint': NSA letter discloses employee eavesdropping on girlfriends, spouses - Investigations.
Previously: "LOVEINT: NSA spooks illegally stalking their romantic interests."
More in Boing Boing's NSA archives.
What we already know is bad. But it’s worse than we know. Senator Mark Warner, ranking Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, says Russia’s attacks on our election systems were more broad in scope, and targeted more states, than what the leaked NSA documents published yesterday by The Intercept indicate.
Reality Leigh Winner, 25, has been arrested over charges she leaked top secret National Security Agency documents referenced in this Intercept story about Russia’s cyberwar on U.S. voting infrastructure. She is identified as an NSA contractor.
An anonymously leaked Top Secret NSA report on Russian state hackers interfering with the US elections has been published by The Intercept, which had the documents independently analyzed by a who’s-who of America’s leading security experts.
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