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Does the NSA track your internet traffic?

 

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I found this first in the German 'Spiegel' magazine, then in English on http://blog.wired.com/27BStroke6/
I added some notes.


It's not surprising that an expert hired by EFF should produce an analysis that supports the group's case against AT&T. But last week's public court filing of a redacted statement by J. Scott Marcus is still worth reading for the obvious expertise of its author, and the cunning insights he draws from the AT&T spy documents.

An internet pioneer and former FCC advisor who held a Top Secret security clearance, Marcus applies a Sherlock Holmes level of reasoning to his dissection of the evidence in the case: 120-pages of AT&T manuals that EFF filed under seal, and whistleblower Mark Klein's observations inside the company's San Francisco switching center.

If you've been following Wired News' coverage of the EFF case, you won't find many new hard revelations in Marcus' analysis -- at least, not in the censored version made public. But he connects the dots to draw some interesting conclusions:
  • The AT&T documents are authentic. That AT&T insists they remain under seal is evidence enough of this, but Marcus points out that the writing style is pure Bell System, with the "meticulous attention to detail that is typical of AT&T operations."
  • There may be dozens of surveillance rooms in AT&T offices around the country. Among other things, Marcus finds that portions of the documents are written to cover a number of different equipment rack configurations, "consistent with a deployment to 15 to 20" secret rooms.
  • The internet surveillance program covers domestic traffic, not just international traffic. Marcus notes that the AT&T spy rooms are "in far more locations than would be required to catch the majority of international traffic"; the configuration in the San Francisco office promiscuously sends all data into the secret room; and there's no reliable way an analysis could infer a user's physical location from their IP address. This, of course, directly contradicts President Bush's description of the "Terrorist Surveillance Program."
  • The system is capable of looking at content, not just addresses. The configuration described in the Klein documents -- presumably the Narus software in particular -- "exists primarily to conduct sophisticated rule-based analysis of content", Marcus concludes.

My bullet points don't come close to conveying the painstaking reasoning he lays out to back each of his conclusions.

Perhaps the most interesting -- and, in retrospect, obvious -- point Marcus makes is that AT&T customers aren't the only ones apparently being tapped. "Transit" traffic originating with one ISP and destined for another is also being sniffed if it crosses AT&T's network. Ironically, because the taps are installed at the point at which that network connects to the rest of the world, the safest web surfers are AT&T subscribers visiting websites hosted on AT&T's network. Their traffic doesn't pass through the splitters.

With that in mind, here's the 27B Stroke 6 guide to detecting if your traffic is being funneled into the secret room on San Francisco's Folsom street.

Note: This room is physically only accessible to NSA (National Security Agency) staff.

If you're a Windows user, fire up an MS-DOS command prompt. Now type tracert followed by the domain name of the website, e-mail host, VoIP switch, or whatever destination you're interested in. Watch as the program spits out your route, line by line.
C:\> tracert nsa.gov

1 2 ms 2 ms 2 ms 12.110.110.204
[...]
7 11 ms 14 ms 10 ms as-0-0.bbr2.SanJose1.Level3.net [64.159.0.218]
8 13 12 19 ms ae-23-56.car3.SanJose1.Level3.net [4.68.123.173]
9 18 ms 16 ms 16 ms 192.205.33.17
10 88 ms 92 ms 91 ms tbr2-p012201.sffca.ip.att.net [12.123.13.186]
11 88 ms 90 ms 88 ms tbr1-cl2.sl9mo.ip.att.net [12.122.10.41]
12 89 ms 97 ms 89 ms tbr1-cl4.wswdc.ip.att.net [12.122.10.29]
13 89 ms 88 ms 88 ms ar2-a3120s6.wswdc.ip.att.net [12.123.8.65]
14 102 ms 93 ms 112 ms 12.127.209.214
15 94 ms 94 ms 93 ms 12.110.110.13
16 * * *
17 * * *
18 * *

In the above example, my traffic is jumping from Level 3 Communications to AT&T's network in San Francisco, presumably over the OC-48 circuit that AT&T tapped on February 20th, 2003, according to the Klein docs.

The magic string you're looking for is sffca.ip.att.net. If it's present immediately above or below a non-att.net entry, then -- by Klein's allegations -- your packets are being copied into room 641A, and from there, illegally, to the NSA.

Of course, if Marcus is correct and AT&T has installed these secret rooms all around the country, then any att.net entry in your route is a bad sign.


Note:
I found this article on Wired.com and performed the test on my machine, with the same result.



Comments:

2006-12-10, 16:57:48
[hidden] from Netherlands  
rating
Hi There hmmm interesting artikle. You schould go to www.infowars.com end send them this. alo go to www.revereradio.net is quite good radio, about politics and look for archives of radio show done by Jone C, called openseason_2006-04-26 and openseason 2006-04-27 its obout hidden History of USA you can finde thouse by clicking on ARCHIVES >> 2006 Archives >> Openseason >> Aprilm, from the homepage of revereradio.net

Maybe this is interesting to you ;o) any way have a good one



Keywords: censorship
2007-03-03, 16:11:21
anonymous from United States  
its outstanding. they should do this. if have nothing to hide what is the harm. but if you a libreal. then you have to cry. so dont take the liberal postion.


Keywords: nice cat
2007-06-28, 10:13:56
anonymous  
rating
yes of course the nsa fbi cia mi5 mi6 and so on keep cheques on the internet traffic and not money cheques see what i mean at the moment there only interested in terrosists bombers .sex peedysget yourself a mac why do you think the mi5 6 have them.
2007-08-20, 14:04:48   (updated: 2007-08-20, 14:14:15)
anonymous from United States  
To whom this concerns a bit of profetic knowledges...A profit once wrote a book that spoke of anti christ and where he would be coming from...and this was not a nostrodomus proficy. When this perticular gentleman wanted to copy write this book, the us library of congress refused to let him publish this book and thus caused it to go underground. All in all, I happened through un be nounced peoples,to come across said book. After reading this book it was to no surprise of mine that it was ever so clear about not some dude with a pitch fork, but about our government and it's rulers to be. Now there lies the path to their demise and to allow it to be published is acceptance of their plans to come, thusgiving away their locations as well as their names(i.e., likened unto a small tree...who's our president?) Need I say or ask for more? The book by the way is called 'SMOKESCREENS'. I passed the book on and now wished I'd made coppies....for many I tell of this story think I'm a nut case, but that okay cuz this nut case has spent the last almost 8 years seeing it unravvle, just as it was stated in this book......let's hear it for those folks who listen and are obbediante to the holy ghost in which we were made of his immage, and not of cyborg or any other man made intellect, including computors. I cant tell this trueth enough, sort of like a for-runner of that which is to come.Thank you for letting me express this issue and God Bless You Greatly. P.S. The book also reffered the anti christ as coming through the will of the gates in Eastern Europe. Who developed the computor.....william gates and where is the mainbrain that we've fought 2 wars over. And is it to anybodys guess, that it's name is called the BEAST, because of it'ss size and it's number is 666 due to the fact that all configurations and languages are configured from the numbers 666, the bionary codes as it were. Is there any one out there listening...and the fact that we are going global with the chip thing that hooks us via satelite to said computor that is trained by the way in tacticle commands. Meaning you get chipped, you get outta line and dont do what the mansays and you get zapped right where you stand..Immagine that.
2012-07-23, 22:37:34
anonymous from United States  
2013-09-02, 03:11:51
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