You're taking American policies and practices and assuming that they're present throughout the Western world, I can assure you that is not the case. In Britain and most -if not all- of Europe simply claiming something is a 'matter of national security' doesn't give anyone licence to do whatever they want at any cost.
British police do not need to claim anything. Britain has the most intrusive laws governing ISP logging of their customers, the English were pioneers in this area.
As I explained in my previous post, putting logging into end user's software is impossible to hide, there aren't any governments in Europe who would want to risk the kind of backlash that would come about when the public realised that they were being monitored from their own computer by their own government.
What backlash are you referring to? The ACLU freely admits that the American people by huge majorities do not support the First Amendment of their Constitution. I recall someone from the ACLU saying that 90% of the American people do not support free speech when challenged.
I know that a majority of people will openly support the monitoring of their activities to prevent crime and "terrorism".
Most of the so-called "civil libertarians" in America are either such frauds or of such grand incompetence that often I feel compelled -for a split second- to side with their jackboot opponent because their arguments are so weak.
It's like listening to an NRA spokesman claim that he needs his rifle or handgun to "hunt deer".
The writers of the Constitution did not give the public of 1776 the right to own guns so they could hunt for food, but to defeat any attempt at government tyranny. A proper reading of the Constitution thus means that today we would all have the right to bear Stinger anti-aircraft missiles so we could shoot down jet fighters and helicopters and anti-tank rounds to defeat armored personnel carriers and tanks such as what were used at Waco.
Essentially the Founders of America gave the citizenry the right to say whatever they wanted, and the right to kill anyone who would deny them this right.
I think right here is where you left the rails. You honestly believe that there are tens of thousands of employees of government agencies just surfing the net contradicting people's conspiracy theories? It simply wouldn't happen. Not because they couldn't or due to any moral reason, but simply because they don't care. If a bunch of people posting on http://some.random.forum.com
think that the government is spying on them and want to talk about it do you think someone at MI5 or the FBI suddenly thinks "we've got to stop them before they start a revolution! I know, let's call them paranoid!"? I think you grossly overestimate the importance placed by the government on your or anyone else's opinions. At most a single employee might glance over it's content and dismiss it as immaterial after having been caught, processed, and tagged as possibly noteworthy by some large-scale monitoring system.
No, that's too many. Perhaps eight hundred to a thousand or so, that's all that's necessary. In fact, given the prevalence of bots used to monitor traffic in conjunction with supercomputers a few hundred may be all that is needed.
Most Web forums are populated by idiots and thus would be flagged so. No need for any input. With pooling of resources (people) a few hundred cops is all that is needed.
I don't know of any western nations which do not work with the FBI and CIA. Private corporations in all these nations also work with them and do not talk about it. Most people are scared of losing their jobs at a minimum and some of us know the answer to the question posed to Robert Redford in "Three Days of the Condor".
"Will they print it?
They work very hard to make us believe they will, but the answer -if it's really significant- is "no".
Articles such as this one give the game away if you remember it.
I have never read a truly critical article about the FBI and their inability to arrest real Internet criminals.
For instance: Business Week magazine ran an article about two years ago about identity information and credit cards being traded over IRC. Business Week gave up the names of the chat rooms on DALnet which were being used.
I logged onto them a week later and found all of this to be true. I was further stunned a couple of months later when I tried again and everything was operating as usual. We are talking about people's full identities being given away in the open channel.
True this is not going on in DALnet channels anymore, but it is still going on via IRC two years later.
The New York Times and all other media outlets are obviously aware of this, but they write nothing about it. That is proof of a working relationship between the FBI and the so-called "mainstream" media.
This hacker/cracker/identity thief who keeps this going runs his Web site teaching the trade two years on. He calls himself (or herself I suppose) "GSD". This individual should be more famous than Kevin Mitnick, but is not because the FBI can't find him, and until they do -if they do- he will get not a drop of ink in the media from those who know about him.
Here's something else to think about: Only one virus writer has ever been caught. The rest are "script kiddies" who altered another existing virus.
Your virus/Trojan scanner is only useful against known viruses and Trojans which are "in the wild". Nothing is ever mentioned about that by the media. Truly malicious trojans used to gather real information from someone are probably in broad use by police and intelligence agencies. Private dicks probably use them as well for illegal purposes. No doubt individuals -true hi-tech crooks- have written and successfully used their own.
Was the Justice Department's (top control of FBI) suit against Microsoft really about anti-trust violations or was it about gaining backdoor access to Windows? Is that why so many backdoors to Windows keep popping up, and after discovery remain unfixed up to seven months later despite the bad publicity eventually generated?
Why does it take so many months for the media to report on such vulnerabilities? If a noted Web site with ties to big corporations and law enforcement reports on its Web site that total access to Windows XP can be gained -but withholds the info- why would the "mainstream" media not immediately report this news? Does the FBI share security info with the media to prevent their being victimized and thus assure them of their own security while the vulnerability goes unfixed?
So the answer to the question posed to Robert Redford is definitely "no