The National Security Agency (NSA) is countering claims of “unchecked analyst access to NSA collection data” on private citizens.
Focusing on the “massive database system” for a program known as “XKeyscore,” the NSA said that while there is such a program with access to the information, it “is limited.” In a statement to Fox News, the NSA suggested the program is “mainly aimed at foreign intelligence agents.”
This information counters claims made in a UK Guardian article, where readers were told the XKeyscore program “allows analysts to search with no prior authorization through vast databases containing emails, online chats, and the browsing histories of millions of individuals.” The Guardian says these things were learned through documentation provided by Edward Snowden.
The NSA has denied this claim specifically:
The suggestion that NSA’s collection is arbitrary and unconstrained is false. NSA’s activities are focused and specifically deployed against–and only against–legitimate foreign intelligence targets in response to requirements that our leaders need for information necessary to protect our nation and its interests.
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