New Leaks show that the UK’s spying agency Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) has been secretly snooping on the activities of the users of social media websites.
The latest leaks by American whistleblower Edward Snowden, which were obtained by the NBC News on Tuesday, are based on a 2012 GCHQ publication titled “Psychology: A New Kind of Sigdev (signals development).”
According to the newly-released documents, Britain’s spying agency used a program codenamed Squeaky Dolphin to tap the cables carrying web traffic and collect data about the users on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Blogger without the companies’ consent.
It was also revealed that the British agency demonstrated for the United States’ National Security Agency (NSA) the way through which it was able to collect the IP addresses of the sites’ uploaders as well as the users’ information real-time.
“It’s one thing to spy on a particular person who has done something to warrant a government investigation but governments have no business monitoring the Facebook likes or YouTube views of hundreds of millions of people,” said Chris Soghoian, the chief technologist for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).
In June 2013, Snowden leaked two top secret US government spying programs, which revealed that the NSA and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had been eavesdropping on millions of American and European phone records and internet data.
The scandal took even broader dimensions later, when the former NSA contractor revealed information about the organization’s espionage activities targeting friendly countries.[Original]