Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
christo-f

Google to enlist NSA to help it ward off cyberattacks

Recommended Posts

I don't know much about domestic security in the US and other secret squirrel stuff. But I am aware that the US is pushing hard against China for a number of reasons right now and this does fit quite well in to that mould. You draw your own conclusions though.

 

 

 

Google to enlist NSA to help it ward off cyberattacks

 

 

 

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/02/03/AR2010020304057.html?hpid=topnews

 

By Ellen Nakashima

Thursday, February 4, 2010

The world's largest Internet search company and the world's most powerful electronic surveillance organization are teaming up in the name of cybersecurity.

Under an agreement that is still being finalized, the National Security Agency would help Google analyze a major corporate espionage attack that the firm said originated in China and targeted its computer networks, according to cybersecurity experts familiar with the matter. The objective is to better defend Google -- and its users -- from future attack.

Google and the NSA declined to comment on the partnership. But sources with knowledge of the arrangement, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the alliance is being designed to allow the two organizations to share critical information without violating Google's policies or laws that protect the privacy of Americans' online communications. The sources said the deal does not mean the NSA will be viewing users' searches or e-mail accounts or that Google will be sharing proprietary data.

The partnership strikes at the core of one of the most sensitive issues for the government and private industry in the evolving world of cybersecurity: how to balance privacy and national security interests. On Tuesday, Director of National Intelligence Dennis C. Blair called the Google attacks, which the company acknowledged in January, a "wake-up call." Cyberspace cannot be protected, he said, without a "collaborative effort that incorporates both the U.S. private sector and our international partners."

But achieving collaboration is not easy, in part because private companies do not trust the government to keep their secrets and in part because of concerns that collaboration can lead to continuous government monitoring of private communications. Privacy advocates, concerned about a repeat of the NSA's warrantless interception of Americans' phone calls and e-mails after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, say information-sharing must be limited and closely overseen.

"The critical question is: At what level will the American public be comfortable with Google sharing information with NSA?" said Ellen McCarthy, president of the Intelligence and National Security Alliance, an organization of current and former intelligence and national security officials that seeks ways to foster greater sharing of information between government and industry.

On Jan. 12, Google took the rare step of announcing publicly that its systems had been hacked in a series of intrusions beginning in December.

The intrusions, industry experts said, targeted Google source code -- the programming language underlying Google applications -- and extended to more than 30 other large tech, defense, energy, financial and media companies. The Gmail accounts of human rights activists in Europe, China and the United States were also compromised.

So significant was the attack that Google threatened to shutter its business operation in China if the government did not agree to let the firm operate an uncensored search engine there. That issue is still unresolved.

Google approached the NSA shortly after the attacks, sources said, but the deal is taking weeks to hammer out, reflecting the sensitivity of the partnership. Any agreement would mark the first time that Google has entered a formal information-sharing relationship with the NSA, sources said. In 2008, the firm stated that it had not cooperated with the NSA in its Terrorist Surveillance Program.

Sources familiar with the new initiative said the focus is not figuring out who was behind the recent cyberattacks -- doing so is a nearly impossible task after the fact -- but building a better defense of Google's networks, or what its technicians call "information assurance."

One senior defense official, while not confirming or denying any agreement the NSA might have with any firm, said: "If a company came to the table and asked for help, I would ask them . . . 'What do you know about what transpired in your system? What deficiencies do you think they took advantage of? Tell me a little bit about what it was they did.' " Sources said the NSA is reaching out to other government agencies that play key roles in the U.S. effort to defend cyberspace and might be able to help in the Google investigation.

These agencies include the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security.

Over the past decade, other Silicon Valley companies have quietly turned to the NSA for guidance in protecting their networks.

"As a general matter," NSA spokeswoman Judi Emmel said, "as part of its information-assurance mission, NSA works with a broad range of commercial partners and research associates to ensure the availability of secure tailored solutions for Department of Defense and national security systems customers."

Despite such precedent, Matthew Aid, an expert on the NSA, said Google's global reach makes it unique.

"When you rise to the level of Google . . . you're looking at a company that has taken great pride in its independence," said Aid, author of "The Secret Sentry," a history of the NSA. "I'm a little uncomfortable with Google cooperating this closely with the nation's largest intelligence agency, even if it's strictly for defensive purposes."

The pact would be aimed at allowing the NSA help Google understand whether it is putting in place the right defenses by evaluating vulnerabilities in hardware and software and to calibrate how sophisticated the adversary is. The agency's expertise is based in part on its analysis of cyber-"signatures" that have been documented in previous attacks and can be used to block future intrusions.

The NSA would also be able to help the firm understand what methods are being used to penetrate its system, the sources said. Google, for its part, may share information on the types of malicious code seen in the attacks -- without disclosing proprietary data about what was taken, which would concern shareholders, sources said.

 

 

 

Greg Nojeim, senior counsel for the Center for Democracy & Technology, a privacy advocacy group, said companies have statutory authority to share information with the government to protect their rights and property.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow, I am of 2 minds on this... I can see Google's position based on their own survival/protection and even protection of Google subscriber's rights but with the already shady rep of the NSA... We've all heard about alleged NSA abuses of privacy since 2001... I'm uncomfortable at best.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There's a hard political edge to this in terms of US-Sino relations as well.

 

 

 

In the last month:

 

- Google accuses Beijing of hacking, Clinton makes speech regarding free speech and HR in China, along with cyber security. Obama gives China a "please explain". Also keep in mind that the only question that the US volunteered at the Town Hall meeting in Shanghai was in regards to internet censorship and freedom of information.

 

- US approves arms sales to Taiwan

 

- US questions China on exchange rates and pressures China to revalue the RMB

 

- Obama confirms he will meet the Dalai Lama

 

 

 

 

This is all done on a multi-tiered backdrop of:

 

- the US trying to get a reluctant China on board to pressure Iran on nuclear enrichment

 

- The US re-engaging with Myanmar/Burma as China deepens it energy relations with Rangoon (or wherever the fuck the new capital is) and also experiences unrest in the Wa state region bordering China's south

 

- SKor, Japan and China talking of a North East Asian community (yesterday they spoke of an agreement to open a tripartite secretariat in Seoul to facilitate the issue)

 

- DPRK nuclearisation and regime instability (failed revaluation of currency last month, diminishing health of KJI, all but confirmed naming of successor to KJI, famine conditions re-emerging)

 

- US mapping the South China Seabed, which China claims sovereignty over (think submarine operations)

 

- China attempting to get an EU arms embargo lifted

 

- China floating the concept of setting up a military base in Pakistan

 

 

 

 

I'm aware of the shady shit that the NSA has been accused of/done and I too keep that in mind when I view this issue. But also be aware of the climate where this issue is taking place.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am also aware of the climate but, in re: China proper I'm dubious of their domestic efforts to curb the hacking, if I'm not outwardly pointing out that these high level hackers seem like possible govt. employees. Damn right we sell arms to our allies, as we have in the past. Plus the valuation of the currency IS suspect (plus trade deficits and govt. subsidies). Further, really, the Dalai Lama issue AGAIN? Fuck them, he's a world leader, deal with it, we meet who we want.

 

The backdrop, China actively selling arms to 'mid-east' powers and Africa AND providing tacit support for N. Korean arms manufacturers who in turn smuggle arms to west Asia,the Mid-East and Africa.

 

*switching to bullets

 

-personally, no real opinion on the Burma talks (It'll ALWAYS be Burma to me), I'm uninformed at best.

 

- That's probably just posturing from Beijing to gain political capital when the talks fail.

 

- Yeah!

 

- Shitfire son, we can practically do that from spcae, mapping I mean, and if you think there aren't Chinese subs in other's territorial waters all over the globe it's only because China can't make a decent sub. (or buy enough from the Ruskies [who can't afford to produce them] or manage to steal the blueprints)

 

- Not gonna happen, the EU wants concessions that China will never give.

 

- We'll see how that goes, the Paks need money but they have the US and the EU with open checkbooks (to an extent) PLUS the Chinese persecution of indigenous muslims.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You seem to think that I have a personal opinion on these matters.

 

I'm only framing the issue in order to clarify the situation not pass judgement on any of it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BTW, you may wish to readjust your view of Myanmar and North East Asia. And in pursuit of being a picky wanker, an open check book, to an extent doesn't make sense. But if you're referring to the Kerry Lugar Bill, I get what you're saying.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No, I don't ascribe a personal opinion to you on these issues any more than I subscribe to one of my own, this, as with almost all of my posts (AOD related notwithstanding) it's all just 'news analysis'... sometimes my opinions show through but as much as I can I save that for paying customers and very close friends. If you look back you'll find I've argued vehemently for positions I fully disagree with based entirely on the fact that I was arguing with someone like AOD or DAO.

 

I am interested in Myanmar but I just focus on places that are actively exploding and my other pet projects (the Americas), I'll look into it more though, promise.

 

Yes the Kerry Lugar bill but also the tacit support we're going to owe the entire region, they know we can't afford to disappear the way we did when the Russians pulled out of Afghanistan, especially with the particularly dicey detente between Pakistan and India.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ha, not trying to be argumentative but I wouldn't say there is any detente between India and Pak right now. They've been openly shooting at each other across the border in the last two weeks. If anything I'd say tensions are up right now rather than easing.

 

 

Anyway, Google and NSA sitting in a tree....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

re: detente... I was being pretty generous with my language, based on the fact that neither party has yet nuked the other.

 

But I digress...

 

NSA and Google

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You knwo it's funny.

Out of al the issues you aguys realyy shouold care about this is a big one,

 

But it slides by you all al withouyt fauck all commen because you aren't awqre of what is really going on arounf you.

 

 

Sleeping beauty was given a kiss but she is abcipusly sleeping too depply.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The mere possibility of any government agency, but most of all the NSA, having access to the Google database, ie EVERY email you have ever sent or received in a Gmail account and web browsing history, is probably the biggest potential for mass privacy violation in human history.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The mere possibility of any government agency, but most of all the NSA, having access to the Google database, ie EVERY email you have ever sent or received in a Gmail account and web browsing history, is probably the biggest potential for mass privacy violation in human history.

 

 

 

 

Yep. We'll probably let it get pissed away, too. I hope not, but it's looking that way.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I introduce a website !

 

hi,everybody, take your time and a little bit.Now I introduce a website http://www.oppell.com is specialized in online service on Prada Shoes,Christian Louboutin Shoes,Coach Shoes,Ed Hardy,Gucci Shoes,Jimmy Choo Shoes,Lacoste Shirts,Lacoste Shoes,LV Shoes,Paul Smith Shoes,Sebago Fashion Shoes and UGG boots. Air jordan(1-24)shoes Save: 32% offUGG boota Save: 40% offTshirts (Polo ,ed hardy,lacoste) Save: 38% offBikini (Ed hardy) Save: 32% offFREE SHIPPING============ http://www.oppell.com =============

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But can the NSA just piggy back with google to get a foot in the door regarding china? Could they just bring NSA agents to their offices in China? Or would that just be fucking crazy and make China shit?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well China already claims that this is the case in a number of Western corps working in China right now.

 

But you're talking openly rather than covertly. No, I can't see China being too cooperative on that idea.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not to go too far off subject here but google already has a policy in place to share info with law enforcement without a warrant.

If the government wants info all they have to do is ask google and they don't need a warrant.

Same thing with Facebook, rumor has it Yahoo requires a warrant and I'm not sure about hotmail/msn.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Not to go too far off subject here but google already has a policy in place to share info with law enforcement without a warrant.

If the government wants info all they have to do is ask google and they don't need a warrant.

Same thing with Facebook, rumor has it Yahoo requires a warrant and I'm not sure about hotmail/msn.

 

 

Cryptome.org has all the lawful spying guides for the telecom companies.

All of them cooperate with LE.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are field agents from every agency on the streets. FBI likes anarchist groups and such. CIA likes college campuses, businesses (fronts), etc. NSA....they have agents out there in the wild but who knows what areas they like to haunt? DIA- I don't even want to know where they are.

 

Google is based on old CIA tech. They're in bed with NASA, CIA, FBI, etc. They love the gummint cock.

 

The gov likes to hire hackers it convicts (the ones worth a shit, anyhow) of crimes against it.

 

Google would be better off hiring Mitnick out. I'm guessing they have done this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
CIA suave but deadly James Bond types,

 

Really??!!

 

I prefer an old friend of mine's opinion: nerds with guns.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yeah you would think the FBI was run by right wing extremists by their actions during 60s against the civil rights movements. I'd like to think they have outgrown this and diversified but there always seems to be an entrenched old boy network. I wasn't aware that CIA spooks were haunting college campuses, I thought that was more FBI territory. I had heard the CIA was doing domestic spying these days though. I agree about the DIA spooks.

 

For some reason, I was under the impression that Google was based on the ingenuity of its founders rather than old CIA tech. It wouldn't surprise me if they were in bed with the alphabet soup companies though. They seem to be inordinately interested in their users and the data they generate.

 

 

Yeah and by this logic they must not be the really good hackers if they got caught.

While Mitnick is a genius I'm afraid he would probably be rusty because he's probably been under observation since he got caught, and thus not able to truly spread his wings.

 

 

Mitnick rusty? Are you kidding? http://mitnicksecurity.com/

 

 

As for Google and its tech...think about it for a second. What kind of internal search engine would an intelligence agency have?

 

The CIA is everywhere. FBI does like college campuses, but that's for a number of reasons. Recruiting being one, but think about the types of groups that form on campuses.

 

If you really want in on the fun, figure out the agencies that don't have names. "Black Ops". Curiosity killed the cat, as they say. Don't look too hard.

 

read these for fun http://www.cryptome.org

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Haha...

My brother worked with some CIA in Afghanistan and he said they were plain clothed stone cold killers. Really bold.

I actually personally met a guy who worked for the CIA once while I was in the army. I don't think he was a field agent. I don't know. He was a republican so we had some political disagreements. Maybe I should've just smiled and nodded!

 

 

 

Maybe he met a JACKAL?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just heard another one from a different horse's mouth:

 

"CIA: Imagine the Post Office with a foreign policy...."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Register for a 12ozProphet forum account or sign in to comment

You need to be a forum member in order to comment. Forum accounts are separate from shop accounts.

Create an account

Register to become a 12ozProphet forum member.

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×