There is a new scam featuring the phone number 202-599-9670. So far, the call is coming from 710-201-2246.
Lavabit, the secure email service that offered an encrypted email service, says it was forced to close rather than “commit crimes against the American people.” Lavabit was Edward Snowden’s email provider of choice, and many are convinced that this is no coincidence, and that the crimes against the people (violations of the constitution and free speech are also cited) have to do with demands by the Feds. And, mere hours after Lavabit shut down, another encrypted email provider, Silent Circle, also folded, citing “legal battles”.
Microsoft has disclosed that it has sought permission from the U.S. government to disclose to the public how it handles requests from the Federal government for user data. Microsoft says “We believe the U.S. Constitution guarantees our freedom to share more information with the public, yet the Government is stopping us.”
Today Google posted some news on their blog, along with the release of their Transparency Report, which shows increasing requests from the government for private user data. In fact, the report shows that, of all the governments in the world, the U.S. leads the pack in personal information requests.
The Iranian government has blocked Gmail and Google until further notice. In an announcement, that included sending a notice to citizens via text message, government officials stated that the services would be filtered, and indeed it appears that, while Google is accessible, it doesn’t actually work for searching purposes.
A rumour has been circulating that people should not use the URL shortening service Bit.ly because, the rumour goes, Bit.ly somehow benefits the Libyan government. Other than the fact that the government of Libya gets the registration fee for the domain ($75.00 a year), Bit.ly does not benefit the regime of Moammar Gadhafi.
According to government officials and insiders, the Federal government is seeking broad authority and discretion to monitor all Internet communications, including communications on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter, instant messaging systems, and even (or hey, perhaps especially) encrypted emails.