The Edward Snowden stuff just keeps on coming. Its becoming almost like an industry for those involved. I suppose we should be thankful for the efforts of the security services, to keep us safe from home grown terrorism and a host of other dangers. But at what point are we going to say enough is enough.?
This week we learned that the Canadian Security Establishment, by means of an operation dubbed ‘Levitation’ has been trolling File Hosting Sites on the web for ‘interesting download events’ whatever that may mean. When they find such an event (0,0001 % of the time) ‘special sources’ are asked to provide the ‘Establishment’ with details as to the origination of the data (IP address et al)
It is almost certain that the ‘special sources’ in this case are the Telcos and the Cable Companies who, we are told, may ask for Judicial Review before complying with any request. Details of any such judicial review are rather like Black Holes ( Talked about but never seen)
This may seem like just another example of meta data scramble, until the users of file hosting sites are revealed. The activists, lawyers, journalists, and a few business types. Try as I might, I cannot recall any example of home grown or foreign terrorism that included people such as this.
I believe the real purpose of project Levitation may well be nothing more than the preservation of the Security Establishment itself. Surely what they are looking for is another potential Edward Snowden.
It does not require a great conspiracy theory to figure why this might be the case. The people who work for the Security Establishment are thought to be very well paid (another secret) and have tenure, that normal working slobs can only dream of. All they have to do is look busy and keep the fear level up.
The business of national security has become an industry, a juggernaut that threatens to get totally out of control. Just consider what happened with C.C.T.V. (the practice of video recording public places)
It started in the center of London, when the IRA ( Irish Republican Army a terrorist organization) was at virtual war with Margaret Thatcher, then Prime Minister of Great Britain. The justification for this war- time measure was clear to all and the results, we are told, saved countless lives. But of course it did not end there.
Following 9/11 and long after the cessation of hostilities with the IRA, the practice spread to most public places all over the World as a measure for fighting crime and terrorism. The results of this colossal invasion of privacy are mixed. It would appear that its’ use in solving crime is greater than that as a deterrent to crime. For instance it did not deter the London Subway and Bus bombings by British Muslims nor the train bombings in Spain. Closer to home the Boston Bombers were clearly seen dropping off their bomb laden back packs and were apprehended largely because of C.C,T.V
Regardless of the efficacy, or results, the practice of video taping all public places is now acceptable to the vast majority of the population as a necessary evil. It is therefor here to stay.
Will the same thing happen with Internet Snooping.? My guess is yes, if for no other reason than its far better than the alternative that would be control of the medium itself.