News

NSA surveillance covers 75 percent of internet traffic

NSA surveillance covers 75 percent of internet traffic

The NSA's surveillance network has the capacity to reach around 75 percent of all U.S. Internet communications. Photo: Reuters

(Reuters) – The National Security Agency’s surveillance network has the capacity to reach around 75 percent of all U.S. Internet communications in the hunt for foreign intelligence, the Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday.

Citing current and former NSA officials, the newspaper said the 75 percent coverage is more of Americans’ Internet communications than officials have publicly disclosed.

The Journal said the agency keeps the content of some emails sent between U.S. citizens and also filters domestic phone calls made over the Internet.

The NSA’s filtering, carried out with telecom companies, looks for communications that either originate or end abroad, or are entirely foreign but happen to be passing through the United States, the paper said.

But officials told the Journal the system’s broad reach makes it more likely that purely domestic communications will be incidentally intercepted and collected in the hunt for foreign ones.

In response to a request for comment, NSA said its intelligence mission “is centered on defeating foreign adversaries who aim to harm the country. We defend the United States from such threats while fiercely working to protect the privacy rights of U.S. persons.

“It’s not either/or. It’s both,” NSA said in an email statement to Reuters.

The Journal said that these surveillance programs show the NSA can track almost anything that happens online, so long as it is covered by a broad court order, the Journal said.

Edward Snowden, a former NSA contractor, first disclosed details of secret U.S. programs to monitor Americans’ telephone and Internet traffic earlier this summer.

Latest Stories

in Entertainment, Sports, Trending, Viral Videos

WATCH: Super Bowl commercials

Fresh
25-overlay7

A 30-second commercial on Super Sunday will cost $4.5 million, but is it money well spent?

in Sports

PHOTOS: Best of Super Bowl XLIX

Fresh
AP613912458775_6

The most exciting plays and best shots from football's biggest night.

in National, Sports

SUPER BOWL XLIX: Patriots, Seahawks tied up at halftime

Fresh
menzel

A sea of navy, green and grey Seahawks jerseys mixed with the blue, white and red Patriots colors.

in Albemarle County, Charlottesville City, Local, Surrounding Counties, UVA

Investigators Say Arsonist Caused Georgetown Road Fire

Alb Co Fire Rescue

Investigators say an arsonist is responsible for a Saturday night fire on Georgetown Road.

in Local Sports, Sports, UVA Sports

Duke Ends ‘Hoos Winning Streak, Defeating UVA 69-63

VSabre for web~1240x800 copy

Three point shooting down the stretch pushes Duke past Virginia.