Edward Snowden will be having a live Q&A at 11:00 am Eastern US time today. I will not be able to follow it live but it should be interesting, especially since he is in hiding and you can be sure that the NSA will be trying to track him down. They likely already know where he is but there is nothing they can do at the moment.
Meanwhile, there are more revelations from Snowden that the heads of state and their entourages at past G20 meetings had all their communications monitored by the British government that set up elaborate systems to do so.
- Setting up internet cafes where they used an email interception programme and key-logging software to spy on delegates’ use of computers;
- Penetrating the security on delegates’ BlackBerrys to monitor their email messages and phone calls;
- Supplying 45 analysts with a live round-the-clock summary of who was phoning who at the summit;
- Targeting the Turkish finance minister and possibly 15 others in his party;
- Receiving reports from an NSA attempt to eavesdrop on the Russian leader, Dmitry Medvedev, as his phone calls passed through satellite links to Moscow.
Before everyone adopts the jaded ‘So what’s new? Didn’t we already know that they did this?” attitude, we have to realize that plausible deniability has always been an important element of government actions. As long as there is no confirmation of their wrongdoing, governments can refuse to acknowledge them and maintain the high moral ground.
So having confirmation of suspicions is an important step forward in creating greater accountability.