The 10 Biggest Revelations From Edward Snowden's Leaks

Former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden poses for a photo during an interview in an undisclosed location in December 2013 in Moscow, Russia.
Former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden poses for a photo during an interview in an undisclosed location in December 2013 in Moscow, Russia.
Image: Barton Gellman/Getty Images

One year ago, the Guardian published its first bombshell story based on leaked top-secret documents showing that the National Security Agency was spying on American citizens.

At the time, journalist Glenn Greenwald and the Guardian never mentioned that they had a treasure trove of other NSA documents, nor that they came from one person. Then three days later, the source surprisingly unmasked himself: His name was Edward Snowden.

Journalist Glenn Greenwald and the Guardian won a Pulitzer Prize for reporting based on Snowden's information.

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I experienced this pessimism personally in Davos in January 2014. Several leading western intellectuals asked me whether war would break out between China and Japan. I was so confident that there would be no war in east Asia that I offered to take bets with ten-to-one odds against myself with eminent western journalists. Two took up my bets. And I will be collecting on these bets when I return to Davos in January.
adj. 娴熟的,有造诣的,完成的,有成就的,毫无疑问的
立场:为LGBT(指同性恋、双性恋和变性人)群体争取工作权益
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1. Secret court orders allow NSA to sweep up Americans' phone records

The very first story revealed that Verizon had been providing the NSA with virtually all of its customers' phone records. It soon was revealed that it wasn't just Verizon, but 粤派家具集中进京 北京家具抱团推广“北京品牌” in America.

This revelation is still one of the most controversial ones. Privacy advocates have challenged the legality of the program in court, and one Judge deemed the program unconstitutional and "almost Orwellian," while another one ruled it legal.

The uproar caused by this first story has led President Barack Obama to endorse a reform to the program, and the House of Representatives to pass the first law that tries to change it.

2. PRISM

The existence of PRISM was the second NSA bombshell, coming less than 24 hours after the first one. Initially, reports described PRISM as the NSA's program to directly access the servers of U.S tech giants like Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Apple, among others.

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PRISM, we soon learned, was less less evil than first thought. In reality, the NSA doesn't have direct access to the servers, but can request user data from the companies, which are compelled by law to comply.

PRISM was perhaps as controversial as the first NSA scoop, prompting technology companies to first deny any knowledge of it, then later fight for the right to be more transparent about government data requests. The companies ended up partially winning that fight, getting the government to ease some restrictions and allow for more transparency.

3. Britain's version of the NSA taps fiber optic cables around the world

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数百所国内高校的2017届、2015届和2013届毕业生、共281万人参与了这项调查。
The study relied on a dataset of hundreds of millions of secret answers and millions of account recovery requests.

Tempora is one of the key NSA/GCHQ programs, allowing the spy agencies to collect vasts troves of data, but for some reason, it has sometimes been overlooked. After a couple of months from the Tempora revelation, a German newspaper revealed the names of the companies that collaborate with the GCHQ in the Tempora program: Verizon Business, British Telecommunications, Vodafone Cable, Global Crossing, Level 3, Viatel and Interoute.

4. NSA spies on foreign countries and world leaders

U.S. President Barack Obama, right, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel are seated together at a G7 dinner in Brussels, on June 4. Their relationship has been tense since reports revealed that the NSA tapped Merkel's phone.

"All I got was an extra hour on the bus to work, but I can't get a seat at the stadium," she said as she directed cars toward a mall's parking garage in Rio's wealthy southern zone.
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However, in season two Friends took a big leap toward equality by featuring a gay wedding when Carol married her girlfriend Susan. Behind the scenes, executive producer Marta Kauffman said, "NBC expected thousands and thousands of phone calls and hate mail." However, after the episode aired, they received only four antagonistic letters. As it turns out, people just didn't care that much.

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The German newsweekly Der Spiegel revealed that the NSA targets at least 122 world leaders.

Other stories over the past years have named specific targets like German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Brazil's President Dilma Roussef, and Mexico's former President Felipe Calderon, the French Foreign Ministry, as well as leaders at the 2010 G8 and G20 summits in Toronto.

5. XKeyscore, the program that sees everything

XKeyscore is a tool the NSA uses to search "nearly everything a user does on the Internet" through data it intercepts across the world. In leaked documents, the NSA describes it as the "widest-reaching" system to search through Internet data.

6. NSA efforts to crack encryption and undermine Internet security

Encryption makes data flowing through the Internet unreadable to hackers and spies, making the NSA's surveillance programs less useful. What's the point of tapping fiber optic cables if the data flowing through them is unreadable? That's why the NSA has a developed a 郑州首套房贷款利率上浮10%成主流 to circumvent widely used web encryption technologies.

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One of the most discouraging aspects of 2014 for professional investors has been the start-and-stop nature of the recovery. We coasted into January on a trend of strengthening economic reports. Within a few weeks, a nationwide snowstorm seemingly drove the economic data off the side of the road.
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"That of course is in keeping with all of the developments that we have seen in China in recent years, including the current enormous emphasis on innovation as a major component in the transition of the Chinese economy from 'Made in China' to 'Created in China'," he said.

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The fear was over downward mobility and cultural changes; the anger was against immigrants and indifferent elites.
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攻读EMBA也有利于升职。一位毕业生表示:“我获得的技能对我的升职至关重要。”五分之一的学员在毕业3年后担任首席执行官、执行董事或董事。学员们在读EMBA前的平均薪资为11.4万美元,毕业5年后增长52%至17.5万美元。
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The growth has laid a solid foundation for the development of the film industry in China in the future, the experts added.
He added that “almost every major Korean company, including Hyundai Motor and AmorePacific, relies heavily on Chinese sales”.
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For the full year, profits rose 3.3 per cent, the slowest growth since at least 2008, when Chinese manufacturers were slammed by the global financial crisis.

7. NSA elite hacking team techniques revealed

The NSA has at its disposal an elite hacker team codenamed "Tailored Access Operations" (TAO) that hacks into computers worldwide, infects them with malware and does the dirty job when other surveillance tactics fail.

Der Spiegel, which detailed TAO's secrets, labelled it as "a squad of plumbers that can be called in when normal access to a target is blocked." But they can probably be best described as the NSA's black bag operations team.

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As a result, business investment in key areas such as equipment has been historically weak for a U.S. recovery. A slowly improving jobs picture and rising household wealth could spark a virtuous cycle of stronger consumer spending, increased business confidence and rising investment. If it doesn't, the year could be another letdown.
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Justin Bieber's split from Selena Gomez was the most enquired-about relationship bust-up while Victoria Pendleton beat Georgia Salpa as the most searched-for participant in a reality television show.

8. NSA cracks Google and Yahoo data center links

When bulk collection or PRISM fails, the NSA had other tricks up its sleeve: It could infiltrate links connecting Yahoo and Google data centers, behind the companies' backs.

2014年全年工业利润增长3.3%,为2008年以来最慢。

This story truly enraged the tech companies, which reacted with much more fury than before. Google and Yahoo announced plans to strengthen and encrypt those links to avoid this kind of surveillance, and a Google security employee even said on his Google+ account what many others must have thought privately: "Fuck these guys."

9. NSA collects text messages

It's not just about Internet data though. The NSA, following its unofficial motto of "collecting it all," intercepts 200 million text messages every day worldwide through a program called Dishfire.

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Other documents also revealed that the NSA can "easily" crack cellphone encryption, allowing the agency to more easily decode and access the content of intercepted calls and text messages.

10. NSA intercepts all phone calls in two countries

The NSA intercepts and stores all phone calls made in the Bahamas and Afghanistan through a program called MYSTIC, which has its own snazzy logo.

The Bahamas was revealed by The Intercept, Greenwald's new website, while the second was revealed by WikiLeaks, which protested The Intercept's decision to withhold the second country's name.

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Bonus: Edward Snowden's first in-person interview with an American news outlet

(H/T to the site Free Snowden, which has an extensive and detailed list of all the NSA revelations.)