U.S. stopped terror atack planned for New York City's subway in 2009 thanks to NSA phone program
On Thursday, the Republican chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Mike Rogers, hinted that the program thwarted a major terrorist attack, although he said no more than that. On Friday, Senior U.S. intelligence officials said that a combination of the phone records program and other intercepts, helped prevent the attack on New York's subway from going into effect. The praise of the phone records program in stopping the attack comes despite court testimony that it originally was an email that led investigators to the plot.
Saying that he was recruited by an al-Qaida leader in Pakistan, Afghan-American Najibullah Zazi pleaded guilty in the 2009 plot. He had sent an email to a Yahoo email address seeking help with his bomb recipe. Both British and U.S. intelligence operations were monitoring this Yahoo account. This still doesn't explain how the phone program helped with the investigation unless Zazi's calls were being monitored, which would have helped the U.S. and U.K. know what he was up to. The problem with obtaining records about the incident is that the program is classified. The PRISM program allegedly allows the NSA to collect metadata on calls over the Verizon, AT&T and Sprint networks.
This story is part of:NSA data collection - PRISM (19 updates)
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17 June Apple issues official statement: “we do not provide government with direct access to our servers”Apple has just issued an official statement to deny allegations that the U.S. government has direct access to its servers and can spy on people’s conversations without a warrant…
16 June WSJ: NSA does not gather cellphone-location records despite authorization to do soIn what is quickly becoming a pesky topic that just won't go away, no less than the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday night that even though the NSA is legally authorized to collect information that can pinpoint the location of cellphone callers, it refuses to do so; T-Mobile is majority owned by a foreign company, Deutsche Telekom, which appears to preclude it from directly providing information...
16 June The NSA can listen to your calls without a warrantBefore Congress could make comments against the NSA, the agency told lawmakers in a secret meeting that interpretation of federal surveillance law allows the NSA to listen to domestic and international callsl; we're not just talking about metadata here, but both sides of a full conversation. This most likely includes your texts and emails...
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