Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Security Expert: Obama Order Resembles Controversial Bush-Era Data-Mining Tool

Aliya Sternstein writes on

The Obama administration has called for the development of a computer network that one security expert said on Tuesday resembles a controversial system that President Bush initiated after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, which was eventually abandoned due to public outcry over invasions of privacy.

In 2002, under the leadership of John Poindexter, former national security adviser to President Reagan, the Defense Department began building the Total Information Awareness system to discover, combine and filter information that may flag incidents indicating terrorist activities. Defense envisioned a program that would probe private databases, including those containing Americans' personal credit card accounts, medical data and cell phone records.

The system, which the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency oversaw, later was renamed the Terrorism Information Awareness program to make it seem less threatening. TIA effectively was killed when Congress refused to fund parts of the program for fiscal 2004 because citizens viewed it as an encroachment on their privacy.

TIA resembles an initiative President Obama called for after the failed attempt to bring down a Detroit-bound jet on Christmas Day, said K. A. Taipale, executive director of the Stilwell Center for Advanced Studies in Science and Technology Policy and a member of the Markle Foundation Task Force on National Security in the Information Age. He revived talk of such a system at a discussion in Washington on using information technology that can make relationships among huge amounts of personal information worldwide to prevent another homeland security disaster.

More here.


At Fri Mar 05, 09:01:00 AM PST, Anonymous Cynthia Beattie Mcgill said...

Everything Obama learned about diplomacy he learned in kindergarten and it is us, the Americans who are paying for him not learing good lessons in the childhood. Hope his putting America on the path of "set a good example and others will follow" philosphy works!


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