|ACLU & Truthout images|
|ACLU & Truthout images|
Since 9/11, the government has directed dramatically expanded powers of surveillance at all of us, not just people suspected of wrongdoing. Our international phone calls, our emails, our financial records, our travel itineraries, and our images captured on digital cameras now swell a mountain of data that is being collected in the name of mining for suspicious patterns and associations.
Mechanisms of transparency, accountability and effective oversight must be established at the federal and state levels, so that people can have access to information about fusion centers and other elements of the domestic surveillance system, and have some way of redressing power abuses.
Individuals should be able to learn what information the government maintains about them, and any exemptions should be narrowly tailored to protect individuals from harm or maintain appropriate secrecy about ongoing investigations.
Robust laws should be passed protecting First Amendment rights, and prohibiting law enforcement agencies from collecting information about individuals’ political and religious views, associations or activities, unless that information directly relates to an investigation based on reasonable suspicion of criminal conduct.
Profiling on racial, religious and ethnic grounds should be barred as counterproductive and unjust, and serious steps taken to build genuine communities of trust that will enhance public safety.
Total Information Awareness
Part I. Introduction and History of Spying
|Image at Truthout website|
|Image at http://intlawgrrls.blogspot.com|
Uprising lead: “The activities of Americans are now watched by around 800,000 individuals at the local and state levels, who may file reports to federal agencies on citizens without any warning or explanation.
“U.S. residents carry out the most mundane, personal activities at risk of being recorded in one way or another by taps on phones, emails, and faxes.
“The infamous illegal wiretapping program started under President Bush (code-name Echelon) is explored by Truthout’s Jason Leopold, who also details the lesser known satellite spying program ‘Tempest.’
“Tempest allows data to be collected by satellites that can capture images from half a mile away — from computer monitors to the ATM screen at the bank.
“Most recently, the Associated Press uncovered collaboration between the New York Police Department and the CIA to monitor ‘ethnic communities.’
“The ACLU of Massachusetts and Truthout hope their series on surveillance ‘will help stimulate debate about whether we are on the right track in the war against terrorism.’” http://uprisingradio.org/home/
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