New leaks show NSA targeting economic regulators and charities

By on December 21, 2013, 10:00 AM
nsa, unicef, edward snowden, economic regulators, joaqun alumnia, us national security

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden has provided us with an enormous wealth of information regarding government spying activities. New leaked documents suggests the agency has been tapping some unusual targets like European economic regulators and charitable organizations that have no apparent connection to US national security.

One target was Joaquín Alumnia, the European Commission vice president. According to the report, Almunia was spied on by the NSA during his time overseeing the European Union's economic and financial affairs. He would later go on to head up antitrust cases against Microsoft, Google and other big tach giants, after taking authority over the European Commission's antitrust department.

As per usual, the NSA has it reasons for keeping a close eye on targets, whether they appear to be of interest to national security or not. When speaking to the Guardian, Der Spiegel and the New York Times, the NSA claimed the intelligence community spied on economic targets in order "to understand economic systems and policies, and monitor anomalous economic activities," which it says are "critical to providing policy makers with the information they need." The NSA continued by saying, "the US government is undertaking a review of our activities around the world – looking at, among other issues, how we co-ordinate with our closest allies and partners."

The recent leaked documents point at political and economic officials targeted across more than 60 countries, including a French energy company, the defense minister and prime minister of Israel, as well as the international charitable organization Unicef.

(Image via AP/Rick Bowmer)




User Comments: 12

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cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I am so not surprised!

Hexic Hexic said:

Why these new 'developments' continue to be surprising is beyond me. Who's surprised the -world's- top spy agency is spying on the rest of the -world?-

ikesmasher said:

Why these new 'developments' continue to be surprising is beyond me. Who's surprised the -world's- top spy agency is spying on the rest of the -world?-

People just like to have hard confirmation.

davislane1 davislane1 said:

In other shocking news: Classified documents leaked from the DoD reveal that the United States has knowingly deployed ballistic weapons in every combat theatre since 1776. Although top officials at the DoD could not be reached for comment, former vice president **** Cheney says that he regrets the leak, adding that, "[the leak] has significantly undermined the United States' interests by revealing to [America's] adversaries a key advantage that has been instrumental to U.S. military victory in every war prior to 1956." He went on to say that those who are responsible for revealing the United States' use of ballistic weapons in combat should be hung above a tank of piraņas and slowly lowered in until the carnivorous fish have devoured "every morsel of their treasonous innards."

When asked if this sentiment was somewhat barbaric, Cheney tersely responded, "No."

1 person liked this | Hexic Hexic said:

In other shocking news: Classified documents leaked from the DoD reveal that the United States has knowingly deployed ballistic weapons in every combat theatre since 1776. Although top officials at the DoD could not be reached for comment, former vice president **** Cheney says that he regrets the leak, adding that, "[the leak] has significantly undermined the United States' interests by revealing to [America's] adversaries a key advantage that has been instrumental to U.S. military victory in every war prior to 1956." He went on to say that those who are responsible for revealing the United States' use of ballistic weapons in combat should be hung above a tank of piraņas and slowly lowered in until the carnivorous fish have devoured "every morsel of their treasonous innards."

When asked if this sentiment was somewhat barbaric, Cheney tersely responded, "No."

Now that would be viral on MSNBC.

Guest said:

Frankly, the only thing they do not spy on are the penguins on the South Pole (and that is only because they have no tech and the deployed NSA agents' asses would freeze overnight).

Everyone else is monitored.

Cherry Punch Cherry Punch said:

I'm just happy we were able to finally identify who the proverbial "They" was in all our lives and musings. All of us weren't crazy.

1 person liked this | davislane1 davislane1 said:

Frankly, the only thing they do not spy on are the penguins on the South Pole (and that is only because they have no tech and the deployed NSA agents' asses would freeze overnight).

Everyone else is monitored.

Yeah, about that: [link]

Forg0t2 said:

Picking up my phone when getting called and always start with: Goodmorning NSA!!!!

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Maybe I should get a ringtone that states "NSA approved insecure incoming call".

1 person liked this | davislane1 davislane1 said:

Maybe I should get a ringtone that states "NSA approved insecure incoming call".

When I get calls, I have my phone delivered to me by tactical teams in a trio of unmarked Suburbans. It creates a spectacle but ensures I don't plot against the state. Though, "Can't talk about that -- gun in my face" tends to annoy most people.

1 person liked this | Guest said:

I think the world needs an international discussion on spying, espionage, supplying weapons, etc. We're all grownups right? This is some kind of childish James Bond fantasy dreamed up by kooks given too much power in our governments and deluding themselves into thinking their doing good for the world. In the next hundred years, the very existence of our civilization will depend upon people working in harmony together. The world has progressed not because of these buffoons, who have done everything to screw things up actually, but because there are hard working people who have integrity and knowledge and aspirations to do what is right. This is the only way society progresses. The CIA, NSA are parasites. Spying is a form of cheating really. Spies should be outed wherever and regardless of whomever they work for.

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