ZDNetGovWeek: Don't tell me you thought we'd be done with NSA stories

The NSA story just gets more and more out of control, Assange phones it in to the Wikileaks party, Manning gets sentenced, and oh so much more. If this stuff weren't true, you'd think it would be in a bad Bruce Willis movie.
Written by David Gewirtz, Senior Contributing Editor

ZDNet's worldwide team provides global 24/7 technology news and analysis. In addition to my own coverage analysis here in the ZDNet Government column and on ZDNet's DIY-IT, every week I'll bring you a selection of the best government-related articles posted by our intrepid reporters and analysts. Here are some of the most interesting from the last week.

Top stories this week

NSA said to have paid 'millions' to cover costs for tech giants in PRISM program
The tech giants implicated in the PRISM hubbub have repeatedly denied offering access, but new documents reveal the NSA footed the bill for compliance costs.

When authorities confiscate your electronics: The fate of David Miranda's computer and phone
Top security researchers and hackers on device spyhacks explain how UK police are hacking David Miranda's computer and phone, and what to do if it happens to you.

Don't let paranoia over the NSA and TPM weaken your security
Conspiracy theorists are screaming that the NSA and Microsoft are in cahoots to insert a backdoor into all your hardware. The conspiracy is so vast, in fact, that they've even managed to snag Microsoft's most bitter rival.

Secret court 'troubled' by NSA surveillance, ruled illegal
A secret Washington D.C.-based surveillance court found an NSA email and data collection program illegal in 2011, as it collected tens of thousands of American emails each year. 

Bradley Manning sentenced to 35 years for Wikileaks disclosures
The soldier, convicted of leaking classified documents to whistleblowing group Wikileaks, was sentenced to 35 years of jail time by a military judge.

NSA's data reach greater than first thought, says report
The secretive agency has built a surveillance system that can reach three-quarters of all U.S. Internet traffic, according to The Wall Street Journal.

White House asks Supreme Court to rule on warrantless phone searches
Should cops be allowed to search your phone if you've been arrested? The courts can't make up their minds, and the Obama administration wants to find out.

U.K. gov't thought, naively and stupidly, destroying hard drives would prevent NSA leaks
The U.K. government shows exceptional stupidity by destroying hard drives in The Guardian's basement. Thankfully, the newspaper knew better than that.

Other government coverage around ZDNet

Fake social network PRSM demonstrates we're willing to share everything anyway
A spoof social network jokes to share absolutely everything (and then some), but then again, how much are you sharing with the likes of Google and Apple already?

Cisco: Syrian Electronic Army using third-parties to attack media organizations
The networking giant also warned media sites depending on third-parties for content that they might be increasing the chances of their users being compromised by attackers.

$15 million cloud ID pilot another NSTIC milestone
Postal Service spearheading program to create, test Federal Cloud Credential Exchange

Assange says he was too busy saving Snowden to help his Party
Julian Assange has taken responsibility for the apparent disintegration of his WikiLeaks Party, saying he over-delegated to his team while he was busy trying to save the life of US intelligence leaker Edward Snowden.

Watchdog decision on NBN access rules delayed until after election
The key document outlining the regulatory framework and pricing for the National Broadband Network will not be accepted by the ACCC until after the federal election.

Brazilian government launches Silicon Valley office
The launch of the new base coincides with a conference to promote the Brazil tech sector and entrepreneurs touring Silicon Valley to network and attract investments.

Labor won't decide on data retention, copyright infringement until after election
The Australian Labor Party will not rule in or rule out bringing in data retention laws or a copyright infringement deterrence scheme if it wins the September federal election.

Privacy concerns cause 'PJ' to close Groklaw
The well-regarded Groklaw intellectual property law news and analysis site is closing because its founder, Pamela Jones, feels she can no longer trust email for the essential privacy she feels the site needs to continue.

Electrical facilities interfere with real-time tracking of NSW buses
The real-time tracking of Sydney's bus fleet through apps is not always 100 percent accurate, thanks to interference from electrical facilities, according to the NSW government.

Google Glass: Coming soon to a cop near you?
One Connecticut-based firm is touting Google Glass as a technology that can aid and assist in cases of emergency, particularly when used by first responders. But with a rise in cops with cameras in the street, civil liberties groups say it could be a "win-win" for both police and public.


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