A few days ago, a new unprecedented scandal came to light, according to which the biggest internet giants such as Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Yahoo, Apple, etc. are required to share data about their users' electronic communications with the NSA and the FBI based on the secret program PRISM.
Such scenarios have been circulating for many years, but for the first time in public, tentative evidence has been given that US security services derive mass information from the servers of the aforementioned companies.
The attitude of Google
While initially - like most companies - Google denied any agreement with the two government agencies, it later changed its mind and decided to talk directly about how it provides access to its users' data.
According to company spokesman Chris Gaither, the search giant does not provide direct access to its servers but has a dedicated dropbox server for the NSA where files are transferred via FTP, while more rarely printed and delivered by hand. -hand.
Google then asked US Attorney General Eric Holder and FBI Director Robert Mueller to let her make public all the government mandates about the PRISM secret program. As she mentions in her letter, her purpose is to clarify to the public that her involvement is not as great as the reports so far.
Who is PRISM?
It can PRISM related to communications within the US, but this does not mean that it is an American affair and does not concern Europe. After all, as long as we use services of American origin and communicate with US residents, we can in no way assume that we remain unaffected.
In order to clear up the cloudy landscape, European Commissioner Viviane Reding asked for clarifications on PRISM and other "secret" monitoring programs through a letter sent to Eric Holder. Among the questions he raised was whether the program also targets citizens of the European Union, what kind of data the US authorities have access to, and how to prevent the monitoring of its communications. The European Commissioner is expected to meet with Eric Holder in Dublin in the days to discuss all these crucial issues.
Besides, in addition to the US, many countries are asking technology companies to provide data to their users, with examples of Great Britain, France, Germany, Turkey and the other countries listed below :
On the other hand, there is little and the EU members reacting to PRISM saying they are against their legislation and asking the European Commission to mediate, first and foremost, Finland.
What does it matter if I do not have something to hide?
Some may wonder why PRISM can do so badly if you do not have something to hide. The point is that everyone has something to hide even if it is not about a criminal or terrorist act and should be an inalienable right to be able to protect his privacy and personal data. In other words, even if you do not have something to hide and never deal with your phone conversations, messages and emails, you should live with the thought that this can happen at any time.
Who benefits from PRISM?
It is obvious that those that benefit mainly are encryption companies, as users now perceive the risk and turn to their products. Companies like Silent Circle, GNUPG, and Cryptocat provide end-to-end encryption, which means that in order to gain access to your data, you will need to request it directly from yourself.
How can I protect my data?
Unfortunately, if you want to keep your data safe, you should forget about smartphone conversations, Google search, Facebook visits, Skype, YouTube, Gmail, Yahoo Mail, and Google Drive and search for other less common alternatives. Otherwise, we should hope that the reactions of more than 85 large organizations and the overwhelming majority of simple users will be able to end the US secret monitoring program.