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NSA Security 'Backdoors' Feasible, Require Legal Framework - NSA Director

© Flickr / o.maloteauIn 2008, the FBI assumed the authority to review email accounts the NSA collected through its “PRISM” system, which collects emails of foreigners.
In 2008, the FBI assumed the authority to review email accounts the NSA collected through its “PRISM” system, which collects emails of foreigners. - Sputnik International
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US National Security Agency Director says that access to technology and communications systems through security backdoors set up by US and international security agencies is feasible, but should be done according to a legal framework.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Access to technology and communications systems through security backdoors set up by US and international security agencies is feasible, but should be done according to a legal framework, US National Security Agency (NSA) Director Admiral Michael Rogers said.

“I think that overwhelmingly this is technically feasible, but it needs to be dealt with in a framework,” Rogers said on Monday when asked whether the NSA should have the authority to circumvent security and encryption challenges to data collection. “We can create a legal framework.”

Rogers made the comments at a cybersecurity conference hosted by the New America Foundation in Washington, DC.

NSA Headquarters, Fort Meade, MD. - Sputnik International
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Rogers explained framework guiding as to when and where the NSA or the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) can gain access to private data should be overseen by US Congress or some other civilian agency. The NSA and FBI should not be “unilaterally deciding” the terms of access to data, he added.

Yahoo Inc.’s chief information officer Alex Stamos confronted Rogers asking whether other countries, such as Russia, China or Saudi Arabia, should be granted access to consumer data through security “backdoors.”

The NSA Director fundamentally disagreed with Stamos’ characterization, arguing that the term backdoor sounded “shady.” But Rogers did not directly acknowledge that NSA is using security compromises, yet said that such backdoors are “not something we have to hide per se.”

Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden exposed the NSA practice of degrading private technology and communications companies’ hardware to gain access to private data in a series of high-profile leaks beginning in 2013. The most recent Snowden revelation appeared in the internet publication The Intercept, pointing to a major NSA hack of the largest SIM card producer, Gemalto.

 

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