Foiled 2009 Plot Involved Emails Sent to an Al Qaeda Email Account

One day after the story broke about the NSA’s PRISM program, Reuters reveals the NSA email gathering effort helped foil a 2009 terror plot.

This new leak of information from unnamed administration sources seems designed to defend the efficacy of the PRISM program. After all, who could find fault with a program that successfully foiled a terrorist plot against New York’s subway system.

According to Reuters, the “Zazi plot” was foiled when authorities discovered “an emailsent to a rarely used al Qaeda address that was associated with anotorious bomb-maker based in Pakistan.”

As with the phone metadata, it’s difficult to see why it is necessary to capture everyone’s information in order to keep an eye on accounts associated with al Qaeda and foreign terrorists.