GCHQ taps fibre-optic cables for secret access to world’s communications

Exclusive: British spy agency collects and stores vast quantities of global email messages, Facebook posts, internet histories and calls, and shares them with NSA, latest documents from Edward Snowden revealBritain’s spy agency GCHQ has secretly gained access to the network of cables which carry the world’s phone calls and internet traffic and has started to process vast streams of sensitive personal information which it is sharing with its American partner, the National Security Agency (NSA).The sheer scale of the agency’s ambition is reflected in the titles of its two principal components: Mastering the Internet and Global Telecoms Exploitation, aimed at scooping up as much online and telephone traffic as possible. This is all being carried out without any form of public acknowledgement or debate.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2013/jun/21/gchq-cables-secret-world-communications-nsaAlso see:Mastering the internet: how GCHQ set out to spy on the world wide web
The memo was finished at 9.32am on Tuesday 19 May 2009, and was written jointly by the director in charge of GCHQ’s top-secret Mastering the Internet (MTI) project and a senior member of the agency’s cyber-defence team.The internal email, seen by the Guardian, was a “prioritisation and tasking initiative” to another senior member of staff about the problems facing GCHQ during a period when technology seemed to be racing ahead of the intelligence community.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2013/jun/21/gchq-mastering-the-internetThe legal loopholes that allow GCHQ to spy on the world
William Hague was adamant when he addressed MPs on Monday last week. In an emergency statement forced by the Guardian’s disclosures about GCHQ involvement with the Prism programme, the foreign secretary insisted the agency operated within a “strong framework of democratic accountability and oversight”.The laws governing the intelligence agencies provide “the strongest systems of checks and balances for secret intelligence anywhere in the world”, he said.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2013/jun/21/legal-loopholes-gchq-spy-worldHow does GCHQ’s internet surveillance work?
Learn more about the system for collecting content and metadata, and what GCHQ can do with it
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2013/jun/21/how-does-gchq-internet-surveillance-workOperation Tempora: GCHQ in fresh snooping row as it eavesdrops on phones and the internet
Britain’s electronic eavesdropping centre, GCHQ, has started collecting data from the network of fibre-optic cables carrying the world’s telephone calls and internet traffic, it was reported tonight.The massive programme of surveillance allows the agency to store vast volumes of information for up to 30 days which it can then study for evidence of terrorist and criminal activity.

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