NSA Campaigning To Get Trump Onboard For More Tracking Powers
The NSA is campaigning to get hold of more tracking powers.
The NSA is campaigning to get hold of more tracking powers. Their next stop is an audience with current president Donald Trump.
With the current complex US intelligence situation, it’s easy to doubt the amount of knowledge and understanding Donald Trump currently has about the NSA and what kind of work they do. Despite this, Trump did see the resurrection of the same civil liberties body that aimed to share the privacy breaching techniques the NSA was using back in 2014.
The body, which is called the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB), was originally shut down in 2016 – Congress passed a bill that prohibited the body from looking into the undercover activity of the NSA or other US intelligence agencies. For a long time, the body was frozen in time – members left the cabinet and no work was being done within it.
Interestingly, in the same month that the NSA has started to campaign for more control over the tools they have in their arsenal for tracking US citizens, Donald Trump has nominated a new chair for the PCLOB. The new chair of the board is Adam Klein.
Whilst somewhat unknown in US politics, Adam Klein has some history behind him: “Mr. Klein is the Robert M Gates Senior Fellow at the Center for a New American Security, where his research centers on the intersection of national security policy and law. He previously served as a law clerk to Justice Antonin Scalia of the US Supreme Court and Judge Brett M Kavanaugh of the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit. He has also worked on national security policy at the RAND Corporation.”
Mr. Klein is best known for his controversial statement on the powers the NSA has. Klein tried hard to defend Section 702 of the FISA Act, something that previous members of PCLOB tried to fight against. In his argument, Klein mentioned that “Keeping officials from searching this data would make it more difficult to prevent homegrown terrorist attacks.”
It’s shocking to think that a body that once existed to provide opposition against the powers NSA has at its arsenal is now lead by a man that believes NSA deserves all of the powers they can get their hands on.
No details were given about what kind of deal happened to get Mr. Klein in a leadership role for PCLOB, but it certainly sounds unscrupulous and against everything the PCLOB originally stood for.
With this shocking change in US politics, the PCLOB now has very little power to stop the NSA from gaining access to more tools to track United States citizens. Going forward, US citizens should be ever-increasingly more worried about how their data is tracked by government backed organizations.
For the foreseeable future, or at least as long as Donald Trump remains in office, it looks as if there will be no opposition for the NSA. The intelligence agency now has free reign over the tools they use (Which includes SMS tracking, internet tracking, and much more) and how they operate their tracking strategies across the United States and perhaps even into other countries.