NSA snooping keeps tabs on porn habits of alleged ‘radicalizers’

NSA Online Porn Surveillance

A document provided by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden apparently reveals that the NSA has been keeping track of online sexual activity for certain targets that can potentially “radicalize” others through public speeches, videos and articles in which they express their views against America. In addition to keeping tabs on porn habits, the NSA has also been tracking their lifestyle and money spending, including the use of money from donations for personal expenses for these individuals, The Huffington Post reports

The purpose of such operations is to use available information gathered through online surveillance in order to discredit such individuals and prevent their radical messages from spreading to followers that would have ties with terrorist organizations.

Shawn Turner, director of public affairs for National Intelligence, did not deny such NSA operations. “Without discussing specific individuals, it should not be surprising that the US Government uses all of the lawful tools at our disposal,” Turner said, “to impede the efforts of valid terrorist targets who seek to harm the nation and radicalize others to violence.”

The use of personal information to harm or destroy the reputation of a person is not received well by organizations that protect human rights, because the NSA collects a vast amount of personal data, as shown by many recent reports detailing the agency surveillance operations.

“It’s important to remember that the NSA’s surveillance activities are anything but narrowly focused,” Jameel Jafeer, deputy legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union said, adding that “the agency is collecting massive amounts of sensitive information about virtually everyone.”

Of the six persons whose sexual online behavior and lifestyle habits have been followed, only one of them is described as a U.S. person, which means that the person would be entitled to more legal protection against the NSA than other international targets. When studying the contacts these persons had with others, the NSA discovered that only 1% of the contacts, or 7 persons, following three English-speaking radicalizers had ties with extremist or militant groups. The three Arabic-speaking targets have more contacts with known affiliation to extremist groups, but the targets themselves have not been involved in terror plots.

Alleged NSA document | Image source: The Huffington Post

Alleged NSA document | Image source: The Huffington Post

Among the radicalizing opinions expressed by the unnamed six targets, the NSA quotes one person’s opinion that “non-Muslims are a threat to Islam,” another’s person belief that “offensive jihad is justified,” or two other’s statements that the 9/11 attack has been perpetrated by the U.S. against themselves. The damaging information against these targets includes “online promiscuity,” “glamorous lifestyle” or “deceitful use of funds.”

The document does not reveal whether the NSA has actually discredited any of these targets, and the Huffington Post says that their alleged online behavior can’t be verified.

U.S. intelligence agencies have collected similar information about U.S. targets in the past, with the publication listing Martin Luther King, Jr. as one of the most notable targets for J. Edgar Hoover’s similar FBI surveillance operations.

Via:
CNET
Source:
The Huffington Post
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