03:03 PM
Connect Directly

NSA Prism: Google, Facebook Want More Transparency

Fearing loss of customer trust, Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Twitter ask for permission to share more information about government data demands.

The Syrian Electronic Army: 9 Things We Know
(click image for larger view)
The Syrian Electronic Army: 9 Things We Know
Although there might be national security benefits to the NSA's collection of phone and Internet data, there also might be national economic costs.

U.S. Internet companies are now being viewed in a different light, one that could dim the prospects of business from abroad.

Already, according to Russian media company RT, Russian MP Ilya Kostunov has sent letters to the heads of the country's defense and communications ministries seeking support for punishing civil servants' use of U.S. social networks and Internet services under a recently broadened treason law.

Viviane Reding, Commissioner of Justice for the European Union, meanwhile announced on Wednesday that she intends to raise the issue of U.S. data collection at a meeting with U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder on Friday. In a statement, she expressed concern about the business implications of mass surveillance. In other words, loss of individual privacy is not the only thing at stake.

[ Would knowing more about how the NSA combs data ease your privacy concerns? Read Defending NSA Prism's Big Data Tools. ]

"Trust that the rule of law will be respected also is essential to the stability and growth of the digital economy, including transatlantic business," she said. "This is of paramount importance for individuals and companies alike."

Time will tell whether this is political posturing or a sea change that limits the commercial opportunities of U.S. technology companies abroad in the same way that national security concerns last year limited the ability of Chinese telecom equipment maker Huawei to compete for U.S. government contracts. But the U.S. companies implicated in the NSA surveillance scandal are not waiting to find out whether they need to address a loss of customer confidence.

Google on Tuesday asked Attorney General Eric Holder and FBI Director Robert Mueller to allow the company to publish information about the full range of government demands for user data that it receives.

Google already publishes partial information in its semi-annual transparency report, but it does not include data demands related to national security, apart from a count of National Security letters received.

1 of 2
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
User Rank: Apprentice
6/12/2013 | 11:34:04 PM
re: NSA Prism: Google, Facebook Want More Transparency
Google and Facebook are truly amazed the NSA has less information on you than they do.
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
Dark Reading Tech Digest September 7, 2015
Some security flaws go beyond simple app vulnerabilities. Have you checked for these?
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
Published: 2015-10-08
** REJECT ** DO NOT USE THIS CANDIDATE NUMBER. ConsultIDs: none. Reason: This candidate was withdrawn by its CNA. Further investigation showed that it was not a security issue. Notes: none.

Published: 2015-10-08
Cybozu Garoon 3.x through 3.7.5 and 4.x through 4.0.3 mishandles authentication requests, which allows remote authenticated users to conduct LDAP injection attacks, and consequently bypass intended login restrictions or obtain sensitive information, by leveraging certain group-administration privile...

Published: 2015-10-08
The REST interface in Cisco Unified Communications Manager IM and Presence Service 11.5(1) allows remote attackers to cause a denial of service (SIP proxy service restart) via a crafted HTTP request, aka Bug ID CSCuw31632.

Published: 2015-10-08
Cisco Wireless LAN Controller (WLC) devices with software 7.0(240.0), 7.3(101.0), and 7.4(1.19) allow remote attackers to cause a denial of service (device outage) by sending malformed 802.11i management data to a managed access point, aka Bug ID CSCub65236.

Published: 2015-10-06
libstagefright in Android before 5.1.1 LMY48T allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary code or cause a denial of service (memory corruption) via a crafted media file, aka internal bug 21335999.

Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
What can the information security industry do to solve the IoT security problem? Learn more and join the conversation on the next episode of Dark Reading Radio.