Nightspore

Reflections on fantasy, SF, writing, music, technology, life…

PRISM: Orwellian surveillance and the Cloud

The recent disclosure of the extent of US covert electronic surveillance through PRISM (and, one must assume, that of other governments via access to PRISM data or through their own tools – Yes, China, we’re looking at you!) shows the paranoid had it right about living in an Orwellian dystopia where one’s every utterence (presumably, including this post!) is scooped up into the maw of the US intelliegence machine to search for key words that ring their alarm bells.

Americans themselves appear to have some (probably scant) constitutional protection from all this. The rest of us suckers appear to be fair game. This is a “wake-up call” for anyone who has placed any faith in Google, Yahoo, Facebook, Microsoft, IBM and all those other US-based providers of data storage and cloud services. Do they deny PRISM because they knew but couldn’t tell (due to secrecy orders) or because they really didn’t know? Either way, this is bad news for privacy and security.

For a British technology writer’s take on the imlications for Cloud computing see this Computerworld article on Why PRISM kills the Cloud.

1 Comment so far

  1. Mike Keyton June 18th, 2013 9:41 am

    Interesting link. I think it will me more my children’s problem than mine and – on an optimistic note I’m sure they’ll find ways of circumventing things. Puts me in mind of antibiotics and bacteria, Medievial castle builders and siege weapon designers. Tom and Jerry

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