Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
March 28, 2015

Can We Trust the NSA With Our Secrets?

While much of the focus in the recent revelations about the National Security Agency has been on the breadth of the government’s ability to collect information, Farhad Manjoo wonders whether the leaks highlight the government’s inability to keep that information a secret.

“The worst part about the NSA’s surveillance is not its massive reach. It’s that it operates entirely in secret, so that we have no way of assessing the sophistication of its operation. All we have is the word of our politicians, who tell us that they’ve vetted these systems and that we should blindly trust that the data are being competently safeguarded and aren’t vulnerable to abuse.”

“The scandal isn’t just that the government is spying on us. It’s also that it’s giving guys like Snowden keys to the spying program. It suggests the worst combination of overreach and amateurishness, of power leveraged by incompetence.”

  • Krusher

    Considering that 90% of our Congressional politicians are congenital liars and 58% of them are certifiably stupid, this is not reassuring. I wouldn’t believe them, as a group, if they told me water was wet. The NSA is a scary, scary outfit, apparently completely unaccountable and with no oversight from anybody, LEAST of all Congress.

  • Delphine

    If it turns out that Snowden isn’t just a delusional jagoff, I’m more concerned about that last quoted paragraph. I mean, infuriating as it is depending on the idiocy of the current crop of congresspersons, they more or less have to have secret programs. They could be reading our email, they could be broadcasting messages into our dental work, we JUST DON’T KNOW. But every clown with an ID badge shouldn’t be able to pore through whatever he likes.

  • molosky

    They’re not secrets anymore after you give them to the companies.

  • Felonious Grammar

    Booz Allen Hamilton

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