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How The NSA Spies On Your Google And Yahoo Accounts

Tyler Durden's picture


It's quite simple really, and as the WaPo explains, the NSA "has secretly broken into the main communications links that connect Yahoo and Google data centers around the world, according to documents obtained from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden and interviews with knowledgeable officials. By tapping those links, the agency has positioned itself to collect at will from among hundreds of millions of user accounts, many of them belonging to Americans. The NSA does not keep everything it collects, but it keeps a lot."

In a nutshell - 181,280,466 new records in 1 month:

According to a top secret accounting dated Jan. 9, 2013, NSA’s acquisitions directorate sends millions of records every day from Yahoo and Google internal networks to data warehouses at the agency’s Fort Meade headquarters. In the preceding 30 days, the report said, field collectors had processed and sent back 181,280,466 new records — ranging from “metadata,” which would indicate who sent or received e-mails and when, to content such as text, audio and video.


The NSA’s principal tool to exploit the data links is a project called MUSCULAR, operated jointly with the agency’s British counterpart, GCHQ. From undisclosed interception points, the NSA and GCHQ are copying entire data flows across fiber-optic cables that carry information between the data centers of the Silicon Valley giants.


The infiltration is especially striking because the NSA, under a separate program known as PRISM, has front-door access to Google and Yahoo user accounts through a court-approved process.

So, front door for whatever the "court" allows, back door MUSCULAR for everything else.


It gets better:

In an NSA presentation slide on “Google Cloud Exploitation,” however, a
sketch shows where the “Public Internet” meets the internal “Google
Cloud” where their data resides. In hand-printed letters, the drawing
notes that encryption is “added and removed here!” The artist adds a smiley face, a cheeky celebration of victory over Google security.


Two engineers with close ties to Google exploded in profanity when they saw the drawing. “I hope you publish this,” one of them said.

And a comprehensive schematic:


Keith Alexander's response was simple: it would be illegal for the NSA to break into Google or Yahoo databases. Because the threshold of illegality always stopped the NSA before and because spies never lie...


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Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:21 | 4105905 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

So Al Gore invented the Internet to spy on us?

<Conspiracy theory is now conspiracy fact. Al Gore is an alien after all.>  :)

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:22 | 4105906 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

"Government, like fire, is our most useful servant, if fully controlled by us, its citizens; and government, exactly like fire, becomes our most destructive master if not fully controlled by the open majority of its productive working Citizens! Only united-armed-vigilant & trained. Swiss 6,000 year Peace & Freedom reigned! Exception? None"

--- from 'The Army of Principles' by George Washington (American General during Revolutionary War & 1st President of the United States of America)

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:24 | 4105918 alphamentalist
alphamentalist's picture

Hey, NSA, I've got something you can spy on right here.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:27 | 4105936 Zer0head
Zer0head's picture

but ZH uses Google Analytics / Ads etc -

the page source is hot and cold running Google

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:32 | 4105952 James-Morrison
James-Morrison's picture

How do I delete the NSA virus from my iCrap?

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:53 | 4106042 Arius
Arius's picture

al gore is a real american hero for inventing the internet ... what you do with it its entirely up to you!

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:19 | 4106101 augustusgloop
augustusgloop's picture

Fuck all the 'do no evil' doublespeak. Did Vint Cerf say that when he was inventing Arpanet for the DoD? Did Bob Noyce think twice about inventing the the integrated circuit at Fairchild Semiconductor? The tech industry has been in bed with the miitary industry complex from its inception. No matter that some geek pixie tells you that you can just lean in, tweet, think different, or be a Yahoo! and feel good about yoursel. it's the fate that man was born for, it is margaret that you morn for.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:28 | 4106519 thisandthat
thisandthat's picture

You can take your phone out of the NSA, but you can't take the NSA out of your phone.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 19:35 | 4106897 King_Julian
King_Julian's picture

you must eat it.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 20:20 | 4107022 thisandthat
thisandthat's picture

You must hit it.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:09 | 4105966 Joe Davola
Joe Davola's picture

Just verifying what Google/Yahoo hand over directly, always good to make sure your sources are honest.


Also, at what point do they run afoul of the DMCA?

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:03 | 4106117 Running On Bing...
Running On Bingo Fuel's picture

"but ZH uses Google Analytics / Ads etc"

ZH is a NSA project run in conjunction with GS and Bloomberg.


Wed, 10/30/2013 - 21:29 | 4107237 Ranger4564
Ranger4564's picture

Pretty much.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 18:44 | 4106733 BigRedRider
BigRedRider's picture

I have Google Analytics blocked through Lightbeam and I can still load ZH.  But if I block in Lightbeam, ZH will not load.  So no matter what you do, you need Google to load ZH.  I connect to ZH through Feed Demon RSS Reader and I use Firefox 25 for my browser.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 21:30 | 4107241 Ranger4564
Ranger4564's picture

Firefox has been entirely compromised by the industry. Why else is Google the default search engine?

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:48 | 4105934 Ying-Yang
Ying-Yang's picture

What is so ironic is that Yahoo and Google have been giving users information to the NSA. Now with this news both companies will feel the blowback from users.

This will cost Yahoo and Google mucho dollars. How does it feel Google?

Yahoooooooo up your butt!

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 18:14 | 4106654 NaN
NaN's picture

Ironic? Actually, they have no choice and are not allowed to talk about it.

The forever war must be stopped.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 21:35 | 4107259 Ranger4564
Ranger4564's picture

Good Cop Bad. This is a charade. There was no breach because Google was a CIA front, and CIA is an NSA front. In the end, it's like the French spying on themselves, ooh the outrage.  Don't buy into this BS... realize that Google, the big fucking civilian spy agency, can't, logically, protest.


Anyway, it's time people realized the entire corporate infrastructure is like in the former East Germany... state controlled.

Thu, 10/31/2013 - 02:21 | 4107764 omi
omi's picture

Government is never controlled by the people. Why is that myth kept getting propagated?

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:26 | 4105923 knukles
knukles's picture



PS.  He invented Global Warming, also.  See if it were not for the Reptilians, things'd be better than just OK.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:41 | 4106349 jimmytorpedo
jimmytorpedo's picture

But the reptilians are from another planet/dimension so,..


Al Gore also invented the "Kill Hondurans and plant trees for carbon sink profit" business model.

When all the lights finally go out, I hope A.G. bumps into Chuck Norris.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:26 | 4105930 AlaricBalth
AlaricBalth's picture


Whenever I use Google Cloud i just share everything with the NSA, to save them a step.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:50 | 4106023 dick cheneys ghost
dick cheneys ghost's picture

Im now sending full stool samples to the following depts/agencies:


















wont all Americans join with me and send your stool samples to the above mentioned agencies, because it wont be long before big brother will be demanding them

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:54 | 4106048 kralizec
kralizec's picture

Why bother with the Post Office, let's just skip the middle man and crap on them direct!

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:12 | 4106173 Jonas Parker
Jonas Parker's picture

Sending stool samples to those government agencies is like carrying coal to Newcastle... they're already full of shit!

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:22 | 4106496 unrulian
unrulian's picture

Hmmm....gonna need moar beans

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:55 | 4106058 Bryan
Bryan's picture

Yeah, I think I might start just CC'ing on all my emails from now on.  They love that.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:02 | 4106107 TruthInSunshine
Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:19 | 4106472 falak pema
falak pema's picture

And, that isn't Socialism that's Capitalist Oligarchy.

To be a socialist oligarch you have to be French OR a Chinese Commie potentate; band of the NINE!

Semantics; kings, czars and Socialist Oligarchs all use the state as absolutist matrix.

Pity we haven't found a substitute other than false perfect market; God of greed.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:32 | 4105954 NoTTD
NoTTD's picture

And he is Super Serial about it.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:44 | 4106003 MayIMommaDogFac...
MayIMommaDogFace2theBananaPatch's picture

So Al Gore invented the Internet to spy on us?

He also invented the mother of all computing: The Al-Gore-Rhythm Algorithm.

Can you feel it?  I'm feelin' it.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:54 | 4106045 hidingfromhelis
hidingfromhelis's picture

It sounded good at the time, and it felt wonderful, but the child support payments were quite painful.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:03 | 4106047 augustusgloop
augustusgloop's picture

<double post> sorry.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:04 | 4106433 Crash Overide
Crash Overide's picture

So right now there are several efforts to build new inter-webs that shut out the NSA. They may have the goods on everyone now but the people win in the end, stay tuned...

Oh wait, forgot about DARPA/DOD Quantum computing :(

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:15 | 4106467 falak pema
falak pema's picture

Anybody who invented the Internet AND global warming can't be all bad!

Especially if he suffered the indignity of the Hanging Chad! 

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 18:37 | 4106715 geologyguy
geologyguy's picture

All I do is email porn to myself over my Gmail whichever NSA team is assigned to me should be sending me a thank you note & munchies every holiday season.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 21:21 | 4107216 Angus McHugepenis
Angus McHugepenis's picture

geologyguy: That's not a bad idea. Create two fake gmongrel or Yahjackoff accounts, set them up with automatic "vacation" responses loaded with certain "keywords" on the auto response, then send a single email from one to the other and let the games begin. They will keep emailing each other with vacation response notices until they are shut down.

Those of you who know what I'm talking about need not reply.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 21:31 | 4107247 reTARD
reTARD's picture

As former insider, Jordan Maxwell said they call it the interNET and the world wide WEB for a reason.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:22 | 4105907 insanelysane
insanelysane's picture

How long will it be till we learn that they are actively adding/editing/deleting people's data???

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:26 | 4105933 knukles
knukles's picture

You haven't learned that yet?



Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:30 | 4105943 outamyeffinway
outamyeffinway's picture

I knew it! I knew she wouldn't say that to me! TO ME?!?

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 22:25 | 4107382 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

They only get restraining orders to prove how much they luv ya!

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:23 | 4105913 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

It's safe to assume that the NSA is intercepting everything and that Google and the other companies heel when told and wag their tails with tongues lolling as they go along.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:35 | 4105962 DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture


Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:23 | 4105915 asteroids
asteroids's picture

Why the hell doesn't Google and Yahoo encrypt their traffic going over international links? That would stop this dead cold.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:48 | 4105939 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

Because it is intentional. The engineers may not know why or agree but they usually are on a need to know basis with this sort of stuff. If the engineers in google really are not complicit they would be running Schimdthead out of town as fast as they could and implementing real reforms to save the company before no one will do business with them ever again. If I was a shareholder I'd want this guy out before I lose my shirt when market share goes to shit and earnings tank because everyone is avoiding anything google like the plague.

If there is any sanity there will be a shareholder revolt against Schmidthead.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:32 | 4105948 Ying-Yang
Ying-Yang's picture

Yahoo and Google don't give a rat's ass about your security. All they want to do is monetize your data.

Power and money...

Score 10 for Snowden and -2 for NSA

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 21:13 | 4107186 Angus McHugepenis
Angus McHugepenis's picture

Ying-Yang: EXACTLY!

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:40 | 4106344 css1971
css1971's picture

They do. The links will be encrypted point to point.

However, you don't get this kind of access wthout permission. I.e. someone allowed the NSA to plug their system in behind the SSL.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:23 | 4105916 knukles
knukles's picture

Just like my buddies told me.
With their sly grins.
They essentially front and back run any encryption for all intents and purposes.
As they told me, if it's even linked to the net, they own it.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:37 | 4105975 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

Yep it is not encryption cracking they excel at. Not that they can't but, figure it takes about a week or so (so I am told anyways, the general algorithm and time frames are out on the internet used for quantum computers) to brute force crack AES 256 using a Quantum computer it is not very practical since keys are changed every message so you'd need to know exactly what messages to target not just general data streams when you are doing needle in a haystack searching. There is more to it than that but that is scope of the problem in a nutshell.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:49 | 4106012 MayIMommaDogFac...
MayIMommaDogFace2theBananaPatch's picture

Look at the diagram.  Smiley face at Front-End == no more SSL.  Simple.  Right?  </sarc>

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:03 | 4106115 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

Sounds like a lazy man's MITM to me looking at it from the surface here. They don't even have to hack the GFE in this case since Google is already in bed with them.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:55 | 4106406 MrPalladium
MrPalladium's picture

SSL is cracked because nsa sets up an SSL verification mimic (Verisign) that checks the key for every SSL transmission.

GnuPG cannot be cracked in this way unless they extract your secret key from your computer.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:37 | 4106327 seek
seek's picture

They simply aren't cracking AES256, period. Snowden even confirmed real encryption fucks them up.

The reality is they're just hacking anything they can get their hands on with impunity and without regard to any law whatsoever. The system security is more important than the encryption used.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 18:35 | 4106670 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

They are if it can be done in the private sector aka universities, you can bet your sweet ass they are doing it also when it suites their needs. It is just not practical to do in most cases.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 20:58 | 4107133 seek
seek's picture

AES256 isn't getting cracked in the private sector, either.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:25 | 4105921 Skateboarder
Skateboarder's picture

My condolences to those who willingly share their private info with YaGoog. (starting with myself)

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:24 | 4105922 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

i hope someone gets ahold of the nsa personnel files and publishes them

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:29 | 4105940 Ms. Erable
Ms. Erable's picture

Including and especially their home addresses and cell phone numbers.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:39 | 4105984 Z_End
Z_End's picture

Indeed... Imagine the chaos and panic were such a hypothetical event to happen. Especially if it wasn't just November Sierra Alpha...

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:01 | 4106110 geewhiz
geewhiz's picture

Anonymous types might branch out into minutemen work in addition to their digital resistance. Those lists would be helpful when the unconnected (except by uncompromising principles of freedom) resistance cells of one need to find justice. Won't be long before the ussa stasi have to start wearing masks.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:25 | 4105924 Pig Circus
Pig Circus's picture

Illegally spying on us, taxing us thru inflation and Obumbler Care. Killing jobs, killing coal, jacking up taxes and fee's at all levels of Gov. Manipulating markets I mean the shit just don't end.

A friend stated yesterday it really is 1984, I responding with some late 70s malaise thrown in for good measure. What a fucking joke it has all become. A real Pig Circus.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:28 | 4105938 knukles
knukles's picture

All the Conspiracy Theories have become Fact.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:38 | 4105977 gmrpeabody
gmrpeabody's picture

It does appear to be so...

That was easy.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:28 | 4105937 LawyerScum
LawyerScum's picture

Once they see my penchant for Asian porn, my job at the SEC is secured.  Thanks NSA!

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:41 | 4105993 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Sorry pal, but they're into midget trannies.

Hedge accordingly.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:37 | 4105942 Winston Smith 2009
Winston Smith 2009's picture

NSA's MUSCULAR program (document)

"MUSCULAR is the cover name for a WINDSTOP operation to intercept data traffic from the private links connecting Yahoo and Google servers, among others. The access point is known as DS-200B, which is outside the United States. It relies on an unnamed telecommunications provider to offer secret access to a cable or switch through which the Google and Yahoo traffic passes."

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:53 | 4106329 Lumberjack
Lumberjack's picture

I suspect the unnamed telecom comapny is Liberty Global/UPC.....

By Soham Chatterjee

Wall Street Journal

Mon Oct 28, 2013 2:48pm EDT


(Reuters) - AMC Networks Inc said it would buy Chellomedia, the international content unit of John Malone's Liberty Global Plc, for about $1.04 billion, giving it greater control over the global distribution of its programs.



Liberty Global, the largest cable operator in Europe, said the deal would help it simplify its business and allow it to focus on its core market, the United States... ---------------------------- About UPC:
history and fall of UPC-and the birth of UPC Chello broadband-

UPC began to put its Triple Play strategy into place. In March 1999 the company launched the "chello" broadband internet service in the Netherlands, Norway, France, Belgium, and Austria, before rolling it out to the rest of its European network. The company also prepared to launch chello as a separately listed public company. At the same time, UPC boosted its cable network, acquiring 100 percent of Time Warner Cable France, which had operations in Paris, Lyon, and Limoges. After the introduction of its broadband Internet service, UPC put the next piece of its triple play strategy into effect, launching Priority Telecom, offering telephony services to the Netherlands market based on its UTH subsidiary's backbone. Meanwhile, the company's cable business continued to grow with the purchase of a cable television provider in Bratislava, from Siemens, for $41 million. The company also entered Poland in 1999, buying that country's @Entertainment, a provider of cable, direct-television, and programming, including ownership of local sports channel Wizja. In France, UPC expanded its network with the acquisition of Videopole and Réseaux Cables de France, giving it the fourth and fifth largest cable television companies in that country. Throughout 1999, UPC added a number of other acquisitions to its belt, including Stjärn TV in Sweden and 13.3 percent of SBS Broadcasting, as part of a partnership agreement to develop joint-programming initiatives. Paying for this activity was a EUR 1.5 billion bond offering, the largest ever in Europe; a secondary offering of 13.5 million shares, at EUR 59.75 per share; and a private debt offering of $1 billion in senior discount notes. At the same time, UPC teamed up with Microsoft and Liberty Media to form a joint-venture content and distribution partnership for the European market. UPC appeared unstoppable as it rounded into the new century. At the end of 1999, the company announced its 50,000th chello subscriber (or, in UPC parlance, "revenue generating unit," as each customer represented the potential for multiple revenue streams depending on the number of UPC services to which they subscribed). In January 2000, the company's Priority Wireless division launched a broadband fixed wireless access network in Norway, marketing telephony and Internet services under the Priority and chello brand names. The company then increased its position in the Netherlands, buying K&T Group for $1.15 billion, and Telecal, a cable television provider, for $77 million. After increasing its position in SBS Broadcasting, UPC made an offer for a full takeover of that company in March 2000 (abandoned soon after, however). That partnership meanwhile was preparing to launch a new series of themed television channels. At the same time the company completed the acquisition of Intercom France, and EITele Ostfold and Vestfold in Norway. Meanwhile, UPC appeared to be finally making headway in its effort to break into the all-important German cable market, which had been dominated by Deutsche Telekom, when it announced its acquisition of EWT/TSS. The company also made its entry into the United Kingdom, with the acquisition of 25 percent of Telewest. UPC had, in addition, boosted its telecom branch, announcing its acquisition of global network services provider Cignal Global, based in the United States. The company also announced a plan to merge chello with fast-rising Excite@Home in order to create internationally operating broadband access and content provider "Excite chello." UPC appeared to be riding high at the turn of the century. Yet by the beginning of 2001, the company was beginning to unravel. Saddled by a debt load topping EUR 8 billion, the company's shares were hammered by the collapse of the technology sector in general and an economic slowdown that appeared to be heading towards a new recession. Meanwhile, the company's da Vinci set-top had been delayed by Microsoft's inability to complete a product that worked--UPC was forced to abandon that system temporarily in favor of a different system. Yet set-top services had failed to excite the subscriber base--the company signed just 50,000 customers among a pool of more than seven million. UPC had added problems at its fast-growing chello broadband Internet service, where Internet access speeds were increasingly becoming bogged down by an oversaturated network (that problem was shortly to be solved by the introduction of the DOCSIS protocol). But chello's dream of going public was forced on hold as the stock market continued to reject technology stocks. The company did go through with a public offering of 16 percent of Priority Telecom in order to comply with requirements involved with its Cignal Global purchase. UPC restructured its operations at the beginning of 2001, combining its transactional television and broadband Internet operations into a single division, UPC Media, alongside its UPC Distribution and Priority Telecom divisions. The company began to show signs of rising sales by the end of the first quarter of that year; but it was too little too late for Mark Schneider. With the company announcing net losses of more than EUR 750 million, Schneider resigned from his CEO position. UPC's fortunes continued to slip through the year. By the end of 2001, UPC's share price had dropped to just 25 Euro cents. The company was forced to abandon its plan to merge with Excite when that company's stock too had lost its value. By the end of 2001, UPC had gained a new majority shareholder, as John Malone-led Liberty Media once again bought out a Gene Schneider company. Taking control of UIH--and a major share in UPC as well--Liberty Media was building on its newfound interest in the European broadcasting and communications market. With John Riordan, a former associate of Malone, placed in the CEO spot at UPC, the two companies' relationship was certain to strengthen as the future unfolded. In the meantime, UPC, which faced financial ruin at the beginning of 2002, managed to stave off collapse as it entered negotiations with its major creditors to convert its massive debt--its legacy from its explosive growth in the 1990s--into restructured equity. Principal Subsidiaries: @Entertainment, Inc. (Poland); @Entertainment Programming, Inc. (U.S.A.); A2000; BESY Praha s.r.o. (Czech Republic); chello broadband Australia Pty Ltd; chello broadband Chile Ltda; chello broadband do brasil Ltda; chello broadband GmbH (Austria); chello broadband S.A./N.V. (Belgium); chello broadband SRL (Argentina); chello broadband USA Inc.; Cignal Global Communications; Cignal Global Communications (Bermuda) Ltd.; Cignal Global Communications Australia Pty Limited; Cignal Global Communications Austria GmbH; Cignal Global Communications Belgium S.A.; Cignal Global Communications Canada Holding, Inc.; Cignal Global Communications Canada U.L.C.; Cignal Global Communications Carrier Services, Inc. (U.S.A.); Cignal Global Communications, Inc. (U.S.A.); Cignal Local Communications, Inc. (U.S.A.); Czech Link s.r.o. (Czech Republic); DattelKabel (Czech Republic); Dattelkabel a.s. (Czech Republic); ElTele stfold/Vestfold (Norway); Eneco K&T Group; Gelrevision; INNET, spol. s.r.o. (Czech Republic); Intercomm Holding (France); Kabel Haarlem B.V.; Kabel Net Brno A.S. (Czech Republic); Kabel Plus A.S. (Czech and Slovak Republics; 95%); Kabel Plus Tel a.s. (Czech Republic); Melita Cable P.L.C. (Malta; 50%); Poland Communications, Inc.; PrimaCom AG (Germany; 25%); Priority Telecom (84%); Sat Net spol. s.r.o. (Czech Republic); SBS (13%); StjarnTVnatet AB (Sweden); Tebecai; Telekabel Graz Gesellschaft mbH (Austria); Telekabel Klagenfurt Gesellschaft mbH (Austria); Telekabel Wien Gesellschaft mbH (Austria); Telekabel-Fernsehnetz Region Baden Betriebsgesellschaft mbH (Austria); Telekabel-Fernsehnetz Wiener Neustadt/ Neunkirchen Betriebsgesellschaft mbH (Austria); Tevel Israel International Communications Ltd. (47%, ); UCI Enterprises, Inc. (U.S.A.); United International Investments GP (U.S.A.); UPC Belgium S.A.; UPC Ceska republika a.s. (Czech Republic); UPC Germany; EWT/TSS Group (Germany); UPC Magyarovszag Kft (Hungary); UPC Romania, Inc. (U.S.A.); UPC Sport s.r.o. (Czech Republic); UTH; Videopole (France). Principal Divisions: UPC Media; UPC Distribution; Priority Telecom. Principal Competitors: British Sky Broadcasting Group plc; Deutsche Telekom GmbH; Digitale Telekabel AG; France Telecom SA; Globo Cabo S.A.; Inmarsat Ventures plc; Matav-Cable Systems Media Ltd.; New Skies Satellites N.V.; PrimaCom AG; Telewest Communications plc; Yes Television plc.

Further Reading:

  • Baker, Stephen, "Mark Schneider, United Pan-Europe Communications," Business Week, February 7, 2000.
  • ------, "A 'Triple Play' for Control of Europe's Net," Business Week, December 13, 1999, p. 64.
  • Bickerton, Ian, "UPC Begins Critical Talks to Avoid Collapse," Financial Times, February 3, 2002.
  • ------, "UPC's Rapid Rise and Fall," Financial Times, December 12, 2001.
  • Blau, John, "The Son Also Rises,", February 21, 2000.
  • Borowski, Christopher, "UPC out of Index and Near All-Time Lows," Reuters, February 14, 2002.
Source: International Directory of Company Histories, Vol. 47. St. James Press, 2002.


Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:32 | 4105951 soopy
soopy's picture

Yea it needs to be MUSCULAR to get everyone in the back door. =)

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:46 | 4106368 jimmytorpedo
jimmytorpedo's picture

I thought that was ZORBA which went in the backdoor.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:33 | 4105953 economessed
economessed's picture

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

And since Barry O willfully chooses to violate his oath to uphold the Constitution, he should be impeached, removed from office, and suffer the harsh consequences (whatever they may be) for his treasonous behavior.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:37 | 4105976 DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture

Well said, we can dream it...

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:56 | 4106063 Took Red Pill
Took Red Pill's picture

Agreed, except it's been going on much longer than the current administration.

“I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:33 | 4105956 dontgoforit
dontgoforit's picture

Run amok.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:33 | 4105959 AGORACOM
AGORACOM's picture

What is the Over / Under on the year in which Americans start burning down government?



George ... The Greek ... From Canada

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:35 | 4105960 6th of May
6th of May's picture



How about a nice proxy, noscript, no google nor yahoo accounts, no cloud usage;

Or maybe TOR? Little slow though


Or better... having a computer which is not able to connect to the internet with offline wikipedia on it! YAAAY!!!

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:55 | 4106053 sky wing 2010
sky wing 2010's picture

I heard TOR has been compromised.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:46 | 4106364 seek
seek's picture

Not completely, but they discovered a big enough security risk that I wouldn't trust it for the time being.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 21:03 | 4107145 Angus McHugepenis
Angus McHugepenis's picture

Seek: What are you using? I keep hearing Tor is compromised but haven't found any alternative that works well enough yet.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:35 | 4105963 sudzee
sudzee's picture

Yahoo and Google now too connected to fail.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:35 | 4105965 FieldingMellish
FieldingMellish's picture

I, for one, am shocked. Shocked, I say.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:37 | 4105973 AGoldhamster
AGoldhamster's picture

As a child (50years earlier) I was told the biggest threat in general comes from Chinese and Russians.
Day in day out. 

Today I have to tell my kids the biggest threat in general comes from the US.
Day in day out.

What a sad world we have become.
Due to our own leaders. Criminals.

Too much freedom obviously leads to more criminals.
Especially at the top of the food chain. 

And democracy obviously first serves our corrupt leaders.
As obviously it is used as a free pass for whatever they want.
While the majority ends up as slaves and taxpayers for a handful of moneylords.

At some point our kids wished they were born in Russia or China.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:44 | 4105999 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Well, it's all YOUR fault for believing that criminals running the mafia are "our leaders."

How about you stop supporting them for once?

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:54 | 4106037 Took Red Pill
Took Red Pill's picture

Yes, we've been told that our whole lives. The entire time it's been our country that's been the bad guys or at least just as bad.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:39 | 4105983 RaceToTheBottom
RaceToTheBottom's picture

OK, this really fries my chaps.....

Tell you what I am going to do, Mr NSA guy....

I am going to go out and buy a Nikon D800E DSLR camera.  This camera takes photos which each are 40-45 mgbytes. 

Then I am going to stitch them together and load them all in Google+. 

Each picture will have the face shots of hundreds of random people.

Their facial recognision SW and storage SW will be taxed to the max.

So there.  How come you are not laughing now, funny guy!!!!

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:49 | 4106011 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

I guess you don't realize that Google is practically the largest server manufacturer in the world? Yet the don't sell a single one.

All you're doing is providing them with the reason why they need a bigger, better operation.

Besides, they aren't analyzing all of this traffic, they are merely capturing it all for use later, once you're targeted.

Oh, and silicon never sleeps.

And if it gets too difficult, they'll likely distribute the load to your own PC, ala SETI. For all we know, Google is the biggest botnet ever created.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:06 | 4106140 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

I think you have your H/W and S/W crossed; you do know the difference ... right?

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:50 | 4106382 seek
seek's picture

Google really is one of the largest server manufacturers in the world -- it's not just software. They have supply agreements with the major CPU manufacturers and deep confidentiality agreements. Google likely accounts for over 10% of all server CPUs sold today.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:48 | 4106016 Took Red Pill
Took Red Pill's picture

Good idea. I have one of those cameras. Let's all try to overload their computers.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:13 | 4106460 RaceToTheBottom
RaceToTheBottom's picture

OK, thanks for getting the joke.  I was just trying to justify the purchase to the wife.

But honey, we would be sticking it to the man.....

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:50 | 4106024 sky wing 2010
sky wing 2010's picture

if everyone starts using PGP to encrypt emails, NSA will be overwhelmed.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 21:08 | 4107165 RaceToTheBottom
RaceToTheBottom's picture

I should learn how to do so.  I have never encrypted emails.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:40 | 4105989 PR Guy
PR Guy's picture



The Pres and Joe discuss the NSA crisis

Or some lighthearted Halloween fun here if you prefer



Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:44 | 4105990 HamRove
HamRove's picture

They have the goods on ya ladies and gentleman. All the porn you don't admit to, all the online casino losses, all the candy crush top scores....

Snowden is our MVP.

Eat my ass Holder

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:44 | 4106002 adr
adr's picture

A lot of people think the internet is a jumble of connected computers that is anonymous and untraceable. That P2P connections are actually direct like they used to be with a dialup modem.

Nearly all internet traffic flows through a handful of nodes. If you control the nodes, you control the internet. Then you have your ISP tracking everything sent to your IP. Most of the new services have cataloged proprietary hardware, like Verizon FIOS and AT&T U-verse. Data can be easily tracked and restricted.

Sure you can use browser redirects and proxy servers to try and hide, but all the traffic still goes through a local box. You might set up your browser to clear it's cache and browsing history after you close it, but the DNS record of what you typed is still there while you are browsing.

Really the internet is about as private as striking up a conversation in a crowded McDonald's.

If the government wants to filter traffic through the main nodes, they can. Like setting up your router to filter out external connections you don't want.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:58 | 4106083 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

"but the DNS record of what you typed is still there while you are browsing"

You think they know your keyboard strokes?  Then passwords are useless.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:10 | 4106161 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture



but the DNS record of what you typed is still there while you are browsing"


You mean DNS lookups ... right? You're not exactly 'technical', are you?


Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:56 | 4106064 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

Thanks.  I like the last one the best.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:59 | 4106091 Winston Smith 2009
Winston Smith 2009's picture

Yeah, I was amazed to see that even in comic form because of what it implied, even in jest. I wonder if an editor anywhere refused to publish it.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 20:01 | 4106982 Emergency Ward
Emergency Ward's picture

Seditious, I love it.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:49 | 4106021 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

The U.S. Government essentially has unlimited money and resources to bribe intelligent and talented people to turn on their fellow citizens.

There are a nearly endless stream of jobs on that pay between $90K-$120K to start with all the bennies.

Do you think they are going to have trouble finding kids just out of college with $40K in student loans who can't afford healthcare and want to get out of Mom and Dad's basement?  No.

$120K per year at 23 years old is going to make a lot of them into busy little STASI agents.

This makes Edward Snowden even more of a hero for leaving his job, hot girlfriend, and Hawaii to do the right thing.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:55 | 4106043 Winston Smith 2009
Winston Smith 2009's picture

Yep.  The younger generations showing up at hacker conferences and being recruited by fedgov agencies and contractors need to realize that they won't necessarily be working for the "white hats."  Snowden obviously knew this and intentionally infiltrated them.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:09 | 4106163 tvdog
tvdog's picture

And high school dropouts can make $50k a year in the local militarized police. Just need to be totally amoral.

The love of money is the root of all evil.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 20:49 | 4107097 Angus McHugepenis
Angus McHugepenis's picture

All the thugs and NSA whores have to go home and live somewhere. They don't all live in gated communities.

Start talking to your neighbors... find out who they are... wathch their habits when you can... the shear number of .gov workers means you live nearby to many of them.

There's thousands of junior spooks that work in each facility. Do you think they "shelter in place" after their work shift ends? They go HOME, so set up some cameras near the access roads to these facilities and record the makes/models of cars that pass by daily.

There's a hundred little things you can do to find out who the pscyhos are, and believe me, once you find ONE and confront them, they fold like a busted flush without their security cocoon. Then they start looking over THEIR shoulder, especially when you tell them you're going to make them famous on the internet!

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:49 | 4106022 syntaxterror
syntaxterror's picture

How is it spying if they have the passwords?

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:25 | 4106030 falak pema
falak pema's picture

Exuberant Hubris morphs into Cannibalism.

Its time to shave Bernanke's beard, like it was a Comnenos false flag of orthodoxy schismatism, before fall of Constantinople to the Crusaders. Those hungry, angry sons of the  worst strain of the best and brightest tradition of Templars become Waspish  skull and boners breed of Pax Americana paranoia gone viral.

When NSA sodomises Yahoo and Googles' blind faith in empire, Nero must die for setting Rome on fire.

Where are you Galba?

Not that you are worth tuppence! 

Have you heard of John and Lorenna Bobbitt?

She cut off his dick at the base; a bit like NSa!

Google and Yahoos' days as Universal vehicles of Internet are numbered because of this irrational, paranoid hubris! 

When Pax Americana eats its own sons.

John and Lorena Bobbitt - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Thu, 10/31/2013 - 00:31 | 4107649 el Gallinazo
el Gallinazo's picture

That's John Wayne Bobbitt.  Hope he doesn't get True Grit in his stump.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 15:58 | 4106086 Palladin
Palladin's picture

Here's the biggest WTF I've seen regarding Google.

I have posted a few YouTube videos and signed up for Google AdSense. It's not much but last year it was a little over $100, and Google sent me a check for the amount.

This year it's a bit more, but no longer will Google be sending out checks. Noooo, the only way I can get my money is to give Google access to my checking account so they can transfer the funds electronically.

No PayPal, no prepaid Credit Card, no check. Only into my checking account.

Let's see a show of hands that will give Google access to your checking account.  Yea, I thought so....crickets.

I went to the bank and asked them what I could do. They said set up a savings account, the first 2 months are free, and after the transfer hits, close the savings account. OK, I said and when I entered the account information Google said that the information was not valid. So now I'm stuck.

Since I'm such small potatoes, there is not option to send anyone at Google an eMail. That option is "not available" when I click on the support link.

So I'm stuck. Either give Google access to my checking account or what?

I'll tell you what. I'm going to file a claim in Small Claims court. I'll take screen shots of everything and present it to the court and I'm betting that I'll win.

And I'm not going into court alone. I'll be taking a video of the entire proceedings and posting it on YouTube for all to see. 

What a bunch of crap Google has become.


Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:15 | 4106187 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

Thanks for the heads up.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 20:34 | 4107059 Angus McHugepenis
Angus McHugepenis's picture

I actually got a check from Google for about $120 in 08/09 (can't recall which year) after experimenting with Adsense on some websites I built. Took well over a year to generate that whopping amount of Google cash.

Took me a week to build 5 websites and over a year of pimp-pissing for clicks on Al Gore's intertubes to generate that. Online marketing for the individual is not worth fucking with. I can print flyers and hand deliver them to remote villages in Alaska for less time and effort spent with better results.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:04 | 4106123 Money Squid
Money Squid's picture

not be an ass (this time) but I think its time to just admit the telecoms (which include microsoft, google, yahoo, snapchat and the rest) are the information gathering network for the "NSA". There really is no difference. InQtel is there with the VC funding, the high tech software programmers and hardware are developed by the same group of people who are funded by DARPA and DARPA-like organizations, the university professors teaching the kids an helping them get funding are in the mix. Its like being in a pool and trying to explain how one drop of water is not associated with another drop of water.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:13 | 4106175 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture




Why not take the next logical step and encrypt end-user-data end-to-end? E-mail to begin with.


That seems to be the answer ... then all they have is 'meta-data' (IP address end points and not the contents, at least not easily anyway)

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 16:41 | 4106350 Dr.Engineer
Dr.Engineer's picture

Wow.  The depths a narcissistic psychopathic administration will go through to see that I am checking the price of gold.

This won't last long though.  Now that the computer scientists and engineers are aware, they will defeat this beast.  Computer scientists (generally) have a strong anti-establishment streak and they now have a named enemy.

I give it 6 months before an app  becomes available that defeats this.  Something like spreading out requests and then reassembling them would work.  Or have an option to create random crap within the message that is stripped out.

Go team Comp. Sci.

The beast is now awake.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:30 | 4106530 raki_d
raki_d's picture

"Something like spreading out requests and then reassembling them would work. Or have an option to create random crap within the message that is stripped out."
Keep all the cryptography science aside.. Take our new nobel "engineer's" advice !! Haha

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:11 | 4106441 devo
devo's picture

You can encrypt google chats via pidgin and otr. But, it's hard to get lazy, trusting friends on the other end to install it.


Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:09 | 4106450 SunRise
SunRise's picture

So it's not just the government that's selling out Individual Rights.  It's the contractors accepting payment from the government to provide equipment and services in support of it.  Slavery is a high-profit area.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:13 | 4106461 devo
Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:27 | 4106515 raki_d
raki_d's picture

But hey NSA still cant figure who the real Tyler Durden(s) are..

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 19:50 | 4106952 Emergency Ward
Emergency Ward's picture

......and I can't figure out how to stomp that bug out!

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 20:07 | 4106998 Terminus C
Terminus C's picture

Not only do they know, but at this point they probably already are the "real" Tyler Durden(s).

Ever wonder why this is no longer a totally free speech site?

At this point we may as well call Zero Hedge "Two Minutes of Hate".com

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 17:33 | 4106541 KrugerrandFan
KrugerrandFan's picture

Remember that list of keywords that came out a while back?  Things like ""Dirty bomb" and "Pork"????  I like to kick this little bandwith waster off sometimes when I go to bed just in case they get an aleart with these words.  Spews out UDP packets to random addresses full of interesting words.  Well, some are bound to be picked up with all the alledged monitoring going on yes?  For the Linux geeks: hping3 --rand-dest x.x.x.x -I eth0 -2 --fast -E wordlist.txt -d 100   Let them fill up their data sucking center with crap.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 18:32 | 4106699 chump666
chump666's picture

What a failed empire. 

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 19:09 | 4106810 BigRedRider
BigRedRider's picture

I don't need no stinkin internet.  NSA, here...up yours.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 19:41 | 4106919 gdpetti
gdpetti's picture

But these 'public' companies are Wall Street favorities and not surprising given all that connected startup cash. And doesn't this all start with the OS's? So why expect the cloud to be any different? Someone posted a while back:

" Microsoft's problem with SSD is LSASS.EXE(Local Security Authority Subsystem Service). You can't turn it off, though MS says you can, it is spyware that writes something to disk EVERY 15 to 30 seconds. Apple has pretty much the same setup, while Linux uses something similiar for file backup-- the journal file, so don't enable the journal file! (No longer needed with SSD)."

I imagine that updates help secure this backdoor access for interested parties, be they the NSA, CIA (who never seems to get mentioned) and all other affliated intel agencies in our Free Trade empire. Any complaints might be taken up to HS et al and dispensed with injection of some hollow point shells. Always nice to know what you're paying for isn't it? And they get the sheeple to play their game coming and going up to the end. Perrrrrrfect, until they too find themselves no longer needed, as the virus always dies with its host.

Wed, 10/30/2013 - 21:14 | 4107189 Son of Captain Nemo
Son of Captain Nemo's picture

And all I would say to the Countries on the "Google DC map", is you need to send in your Government IT professionals to each of those POPs to disconnect the service and start your own "Google" w/ (inbound and outbound) secured traffic going to and from your own Country.

This will be a very long drawn out process that will take time to resolve diplomatically with a plethora of new international internet regulations, but it will no doubt increase competition especially in the security protocol services department and may make Google's search capabilities irrelevant one day.

On that last one let's hope it happens sooner rather than later.

Thu, 10/31/2013 - 08:24 | 4108116 Budd aka Sidewinder
Budd aka Sidewinder's picture

Fuck everybody that laughed at me for keeping my AOL account.  Nerds

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!