HUGE NAVY DRONE THAT IS BIGGER THAN A 737 TAKES TO THE SKIES FOR FLIGHT ACROSS AMERICA

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By PETE D’AMATO FOR MAILONLINE
PUBLISHED: 09:15 EST, 19 September 2014 | UPDATED: 12:39 EST, 19 September 2014

An airliner-sized Navy surveillance drone made its first transcontinental flight Wednesday night, flying 11 hours across the United States before landing Thursday morning at a Navy base in Maryland.
The cross-country test was the first for the MQ-4C Triton, which will play a role in the Navy’s planned Broad Area Maritime Surveillance program.
The Triton left from an airfield in Palmdale, California, at Northrop Grumman, which manufactures the aircraft, crossing the Gulf of Mexico before tracking up the Atlantic coast and landing at Naval Air Station Patuxent River in Maryland.
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Safe landing: The massive MQ-4C landed Thursday morning in Maryland after flying overnight from California, showing off the long-range capabilities of the aircraft
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Safe landing: The massive MQ-4C landed Thursday morning in Maryland after flying overnight from California, showing off the long-range capabilities of the aircraft
A Navy press release stated that the unmanned aircraft flew above 50,000 feet to avoid commercial air traffic and that after 11 hours and 3,290 miles landed safely in Maryland.
MQ-4C Triton
Wingspan: 130.9ft (39.9m)
Length: 47.6ft (14.5m)
Height: 15.4ft (4.6m)
Gross Take-off Weight: 32,250lbs (14,628kg)
Max. Internal Payload: 3,200lbs (1,452kg)
Max. External Payload: 2,400lbs (1,089kg)
Max. Altitude: 56,500ft (17.22km)
Max. Velocity: 331 knots
Max. Flight Endurance: 28 hours
• Rolls-Royce AE3007H turbofan engine
• 360-degree field of regard sensors
• Multi-function electronically steered radar
• Electro-optical and infrared targeting system
• Electronic Support Measures to track and identify electronic signals
(source: Northrop Grumman)
The Washington Post reports that the drone can provide blanket surveillance for the Navy as part of the branch’s Broad Area Maritime Surveillance program.
Triton uses ‘radar, infrared sensors and advanced cameras to provide full-motion video and photographs’ to Navy personnel.

Coverage: Unmanned aircraft do the ‘dull, dirty or dangerous’ work for the military, including surveillance of large swaths of empty ocean
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Coverage: Unmanned aircraft do the ‘dull, dirty or dangerous’ work for the military, including surveillance of large swaths of empty ocean
Big bird: The largest Boeing 737s have a wingspan of 112 feet, which can’t compete with the 130-foot wings of the MQ-4C Triton
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Big bird: The largest Boeing 737s have a wingspan of 112 feet, which can’t compete with the 130-foot wings of the MQ-4C Triton
According to Ars Technica, the Navy is also looking for carrier-based attack drones, with Naval Air Systems Command soliciting proposals for an unmanned aircraft capable of both surveillance and air strikes in April.
Surveillance drones have attracted their share of criticism as the military has been reluctant to offer transparency on their use or safety record.
The ACLU says both the military and the FAA refuse to release data on drone crashes.
In 2012, a RQ-4A Global Hawk, an earlier unmanned aircraft built by Northrop Grumman, crashed during training exercises in an unpopulated area near Naval Air Station Patuxent River.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2762481/The-Navy-s-huge-surveillance-drone-completed-cross-country-test-flight-Wednesday-night.html#ixzz3DngfLJ9j
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Mysterious unidentified spying cell towers found across Washington, DC

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Washington, DC is littered with surveillance devices designed to trick surrounding mobile phones into logging onto signal-lifting networks, thereby allowing for tracking or call-monitoring purposes.

While traveling around the capital city with Washington Post reporters, a top executive using his company’s mobile-security technology detected as many as 18 such devices mimicking legitimate cell towers around the city, especially in sensitive areas around the likes of the White House, the US Capitol building, and foreign embassies.

Aaron Turner’s company Integricell is one of many outfits that has developed technology to indicate surveillance devices – known as ISMI catchers – used by police, intelligence entities, private individuals, and others to track surrounding devices or to even spy on phone calls.

ISMI catchers are named after a “unique identifying phone code called an ISMI,” according to the Post, and can hijack phone signals, tricking an average mobile phone attempting to hook into established cell networks such as Verizon or AT&T.

While Integricell found at least 18 such ISMI catchers, others believe that is simply the beginning.

“I think there’s even more here,” said Les Goldsmith, top executive with ESD America, a tech company partnering with Integricell to promote the company’s GSMK CryptoPhone. “That was just us driving around for a day and a half.”

Others expressed doubt to the Post that the CryptoPhone – currently marketed at $3,500 apiece – can accurately identify individual ISMI catchers.

“I would bet money that there are governments that are spying in DC,” said Christopher Soghoian, principal technologist for the American Civil Liberties Union. “Whether you can detect that with a $3,000 device, I don’t know.”

Goldsmith said that though there are ISMI catchers in the locations identified by Integricell’s technology, CryptoPhone cannot very well determine the source of espionage, whether it is the US government, local police, a foreign intelligence entity, or an individual.

The Federal Communications Commission has taken notice of ISMI-catching technology, as even skilled hobby technologists could build a surveillance device for less than $1,500. This summer, the FCC organized a task force to study potential use and abuse of ISMI catchers by foreign governments or private citizens. The FCC does not have authorization to police US government use of the catchers – which are illegal to use without a search warrant or other legal clearance.

Meanwhile, researchers across the globe are racing to counter ISMI catchers with a device known as “ISMI catcher-catcher.” These efforts include the development of free or inexpensive apps that could offer some protection from surveillance.

CryptoPhone looks for three indicators when attempting to identify an ISMI catcher: when a phone moves to a 2G network from a more-secure 3G one; when a phone connection “strips away” encryption; and when a cell tower does not offer a “neighbor’s list” of other cell towers in the area. ISMI catchers will not provide such lists, hoping to capture any phone that it comes in contact with in a general area.

When cruising around DC with the Post, Integricell’s Turner reported one or two of the three indicators. Only once in 90 minutes were all three indicators detected.

While there is a surge of interest in the likes of the CryptoPhone, researchers contend that makers of IMSI catchers will boost their own technology to outwit ISMI catcher-catchers, signaling an arms race in surveillance and counter-surveillance technology.

Earlier this month, Popular Science published a story – citing ESD America’s CEO Goldsmith – reporting that the CryptoPhone had found 17 different fake cell phone towers, or interceptors, across the United States in cities such as New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle, and more.

“Interceptor use in the US is much higher than people had anticipated,” Goldsmith told Popular Science. “One of our customers took a road trip from Florida to North Carolina and he found 8 different interceptors on that trip. We even found one at South Point Casino in Las Vegas.”

Although these interceptors act as fake cell phone towers, they are not necessary large, physical structures. They could simply be small mobile devices that act exactly like a real tower, deceiving phones into giving up information. Such devices are known as ‘Stingrays,’ after the brand name of one popular type of interceptor.

Police agencies across the country are increasingly relying on Stingrays to conduct investigations, but the powerful tools aren’t often discussed in public.

In June, the US Marshals Service intervened in a dispute between a Florida police department and the state’s ACLU chapter, with the Marshals sweeping in at the last minute to seize controversial cell phone records obtained with a Stingray device before the ACLU was able to review them.

The ACLU has asserted that a Stingray enables the “electronic equivalent of dragnet ‘general searches’ prohibited by the Fourth Amendment,” and convinced a court to force the Sarasota police to make the documents available for review.

Spying and storing: Assange says ‘Google works like NSA’

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WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange equated Google with the National Security Agency and GCHQ, saying the tech giant has become “a privatized version of the NSA,” as it collects, stores, and indexes people’s data. He made his remarks to BBC and Sky News.

“Google’s business model is the spy. It makes more than 80 percent of its money by collecting information about people, pooling it together, storing it, indexing it, building profiles of people to predict their interests and behavior, and then selling those profiles principally to advertisers, but also others,” Assange told BBC.

“So the result is that Google, in terms of how it works, its actual practice, is almost identical to the National Security Agency or GCHQ,” the whistleblower argued.

‘Google deeply involved in US foreign policy’
Google has been working with the NSA “in terms of contracts since at least 2002,” Assange told Sky News.

“They are formally listed as part of the defense industrial base since 2009. They have been engaged with the Prism system, where nearly all information collected by Google is available to the NSA,” Assange said. “At the institutional level, Google is deeply involved in US foreign policy.”

Google has tricked people into believing that it is “a playful, humane organization” and not a “big, bad US corporation,” Assange told BBC. “But in fact it has become just that…it is now arguably the most influential commercial organization.”

“Google has now spread to every country, every single person, who has access to the internet,” he reminded.

Police stand guard during a news conference by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at the Ecuadorian embassy in central London August 18, 2014.(Reuters / Toby Melville)Police stand guard during a news conference by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at the Ecuadorian embassy in central London August 18, 2014.(Reuters / Toby Melville)

During his interviews, Assange also touched on his own situation at the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where he has been trapped since June 2012, after being offered asylum.

The embassy is watched around the clock by British police who are ready to place Assange under arrest should he attempt to leave.

Assange said that his stay there has impacted his work, as surveillance makes certain tasks very difficult.

“The 7.3 million pounds (US$12 million) of police surveillance admitted outside this embassy. It is a difficult situation. It is not a situation that is easy for [a] national security reporter. You can’t read sources. It is difficult to meet some of my staff because of that surveillance,” he said.

“On the other hand, there are no subpoenas, there are no door knocks in the night, unlike [for] other national security reporters. So in some ways there are benefits to the situation,” Assange noted. “Other people are in more difficult situations. Chelsea Manning for example, who was sentenced last year to 35 years in prison, my alleged co-conspirator.”

Attitude shift
Assange spoke optimistically about recent changes made to Britain’s extradition laws.

“Early this year, the UK passed modifications to ban extradition without charge, to insist on if you want to speak with someone you have to come to the UK or charge them. You can’t just say, ‘I want to speak to that person and I am not willing to use any standard mechanisms.’”

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange (R) speaks as Ecuador’s Foreign Affairs Minister Ricardo Patino listens, during a news conference at the Ecuadorian embassy in central London August 18, 2014. (Reuters / John Stillwell)WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange (R) speaks as Ecuador’s Foreign Affairs Minister Ricardo Patino listens, during a news conference at the Ecuadorian embassy in central London August 18, 2014. (Reuters / John Stillwell)

Meanwhile, the situation has also been changing in Sweden, with general elections taking place over the weekend. According to Assange, there is a shift in attitude there, which could mean a significant change for him as early as next year.

“The Swedish election was on Sunday. We don’t know yet what the formation of the government will be. It will probably be a center-left government. And there is attitude changes there. We have appeal in Sweden in just two weeks’ time.”

Assange filed an appeal against a Swedish warrant for his arrest earlier in September. His lawyers are arguing that the prosecutors are acting “in gross breach of Swedish law.”

“We argue against the district court’s decision and believe they do not properly take account of the situation,” said Assange’s Swedish attorney, Thomas Olssen, according to Swedish daily Svenska Dagbladet.

The WikiLeaks founder is wanted for questioning in Sweden, for allegedly sexually assaulting two women in Stockholm in 2010.

Assange denies the allegations, but will not travel to Sweden to be questioned because he says the charges are politically motivated for his work with WikiLeaks and he will be extradited to the US. WikiLeaks enraged Washington by publishing thousands of leaked diplomatic cables in 2010.

Meanwhile, Assange has released a new book titled ‘When Google Met WikiLeaks.’ In the book, the WikiLeaks founder describes his vision for the future of the internet and recounts a meeting with Google chairman Eric Schmidt in 2011.

Mystery Surrounds Unexplained Cellphone Tower in NC

Tower not being used by any major communications company

by Paul Joseph Watson | September 18, 2014

Questions are being asked about a strange communications tower disguised as a tree which was discovered by a resident of Charlotte, North Carolina after media reports of fake cellphone towers popping up across the country which are being used at surveillance devices.

The tower is not listed as being operated by any of the major telecommunications firms, AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, T-Mobile or Cricket – and the firm that built the tower is refusing to answer questions as to who operates it and for what purpose.

Intelligence Director Clapper insists he didn’t lie to Congress — but ‘misspoke’ about NSA spying

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The United States’ top intelligence official said Thursday that he’s disappointed to continuously have his integrity disputed over an unsound remark he made before Congress more than a year ago concerning the National Security Agency’s spy tactics.

Eighteen months after he told lawmakers that the NSA does “not wittingly” collect and store data pertaining to US citizens, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said during an event Thursday morning in Washington, DC that he still takes heat for his infamous answer.

The gaffe in question occurred when Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) asked DNI Clapper during an intelligence hearing in March 2013 if American citizens are immune to surveillance programs undertaken by the NSA. Although Clapper responded “not wittingly,” classified documents leaked to the media by former contractor Edward Snowden later that year proved that Americans’ communications are indeed collected by the NSA.

“It has been very disappointing to have my integrity questioned because of a mistake,” Clapper said during an event on Thursday, according to the Associated Press.

Dan Froomkin, a reporter for The Intercept, tweeted that Clapper complained “bitterly” of being “accused of lying.”

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The DNI’s latest remarks were made during a summit at a DC ballroom that occurred in concert with his office’s release of a new strategic plan intended to outline the intelligence community’s mission for the next four years. At that event, Clapper claimed that “the theft and leak of NSA documents and the associated loss of collection capabilities” is one of four significant factors contributing to what he called a “perfect storm” that’s eroding the intelligence community’s ability to collect details, according to Politico.

After Snowden’s leaks revealed to the world that NSA routinely collects information on the phone calls placed to and from millions of Americans on a daily basis, among other operations, Clapper wrote to Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-California), the chair of that chamber’s intelligence committee, to apologize for what he admitted to be a “clearly erroneous” response made under oath to Sen. Clapper. His answer, Clapper insisted, was the “least untruthful” response he could provide lawmakers in an unclassified hearing.

Soon after Clapper said he was sorry, though, Sen. Wyden issued a statement saying he provided the DNI’s office with a copy of his questions a day in advance “so that he would be prepared to answer.”

“[M]isleading statements by intelligence officials have prevented our constituents from evaluating the decisions that their government was making, and will unfortunately undermine trust in government more broadly,” a bipartisan group of 26 senators wrote to Clapper in July 2013, weeks after the first Snowden leaks surfaced.

According to Politico’s Josh Gerstein, Clapper said during Thursday’s event that the “perfect storm” affecting the intelligence community is forcing the US to take “more risk” as a nation.

“In many cases, we’ve chosen where we’re taking risk, cutting specific programs, stopping specific collections and declassifying specific documents. All of those are good choices, as long as we recognize that we — as a nation — have to manage the attendant risks,” Clapper said.

On his part, Snowden said previously that the “breaking point” with regards to deciding to leak classified documents came when Clapper lied under oath last March.

“[T]here is no saving an intelligence community that believes that it can lie to the public and to legislators who need to be able to trust it and regulate its actions,” the former NSA contractor told a German television network in February this year. “Seeing that really meant for me there was no going back. Beyond that, it was the creeping realization that no one else was going to do this. The public had a right to know about these programs. The public had a right to know that which the government is doing in its name.”

“I think I was reading it in the paper the next day, talking to coworkers, saying, can you believe this…?” Snowden later told Wired.

Despite claims to the contrary coming from the intelligence community at large, private security firm Flashpoint Global Partners said in an analysis released earlier this month that the terror groups whose communications are commonly sought by the NSA have not altered the way they share messages.

“Nothing has changed about the encryption methodologies that they use,” Evan Kohlmann, a Flashpoint partner, told NBC last week. “It’s difficult to reconcile with the claim that they have dramatically improved their encryption technology since Snowden.”

“While we’ve made mistakes, to be clear, the [intelligence community] never willfully violated the law,” Froomkin quoted the director as saying.

Navy Illegally Hacking ‘All Civilian Computers’ in Several States

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“So far as we can tell from the record, it has become a routine practice for the Navy…”

by Mikael Thalen | Infowars.com | September 15, 2014

The Navy’s primary law enforcement agency has been conducting illegal surveillance operations against countless civilian computers for the past several years, a federal appeals court found last week.

Documents obtained by the Courthouse News Service reveal a 2010 case in which a Naval Criminal Investigative Service Agent in Georgia used an advanced surveillance software program known as “RoundUp” to scan every civilian computer in Washington state for child pornography.

NCIS Agent Steve Logan was able to locate one suspect, Washington-resident Michael Dreyer, and immediately turned the information over to police, who subpoenaed Dreyer’s internet service provider with the FBI. Dreyer was charged in federal court after the officers, and Homeland Security at a later date, used the illegally-obtained data to acquire a search warrant for his house.

After Dreyer’s lawyers questioned the search warrant’s legitimacy, Navy representatives claimed that the initial surveillance operation was justified due to Washington state’s heavy “saturation” of Navy personnel and Dreyer’s prior military service.

A panel of the Ninth District Court of Appeals in San Francisco disagreed, stating that the search never targeted specific military bases or personnel but instead searched millions of computers not associated with the military.

“To accept that position would mean that NCIS agents could, for example, routinely stop suspected drunk drivers in downtown Seattle on the off-chance that a driver is a member of the military, and then turn over all information collected about civilians to the Seattle Police Department for prosecution,” wrote Judge Marsha Berzon.

While possession of child pornography is undoubtedly the most vile of offenses, the government’s use of dragnet surveillance against millions of Americans not suspected of a crime still remains unconstitutional.

“This is, literally, the militarization of the police,” defense attorney Erik Levin told the San Francisco Chronicle. “They have enough funding that they can go out and stray from the core mission of national security and get into local law enforcement.”

Unsurprisingly, the case also revealed the illegal surveillance practice to be a regular occurrence inside the Navy.

“So far as we can tell from the record, it has become a routine practice for the Navy to conduct surveillance of all the civilian computers in an entire state to see whether any child pornography can be found on them, and then to turn over the information to civilian law enforcement when no military connection exists,” the ruling states.

“We have here abundant evidence that the violation at issue has occurred repeatedly and frequently, and that the government believes that its conduct is permissible, despite prior cautions by our court and others that military personnel, including NCIS agents, may not enforce the civilian laws.”

The Navy, like countless other government agencies, may also be engaged in “parallel construction,” a technique used by law enforcement to conceal when data is provided illegally by federal agencies.

Speaking with Infowars earlier this month, NSA whistleblower Kirk Wiebe explained how the federal government routinely engages in the practice.

“Now we have NSA collaborating with FBI and DEA doing something called ‘Parallel Construction.’ In such a scenario, NSA sends information to a law enforcement agency, such as Drug Enforcement Agency and that agency uses the information secretly to investigate individuals, circumventing the law. No warrants,” Wiebe said.

“In fact, the agency actively covers up the source of the information to make it look like the information came out of classical law enforcement investigatory techniques. DEA has a special unit called the ‘SOD’ – Special Operations Division that does the cover up work. The legal consequence of doing this kind of surreptitious collaboration between intelligence and law enforcement is to deny an accused person their legal rights under the Constitution. They are denied the opportunity to face their accuser because the source of the information is kept under wraps/hidden.”