According to the latest report revealed by NSA leaker Edward Snowden, The National Security Agency has a secret program that allows it to see just about everything a person does on the Internet.
The slides show an NSA tool called DNI Presenter, used to read the content of stored emails, and appears to enable an analyst using XKeyscore to read the content of Facebook chats or private messages.
An analyst can monitor such Facebook chats by entering the Facebook user name and a date range into a simple search screen.
XKeyscore looks to provide the technological capability, if not the legal authority, to target even US persons for extensive electronic surveillance without a warrant provided that some identifying information, such as their email or IP address, is known to the analyst.
While the entire presentation can now be found online, the Guardian has published the following slides:
The NSA documents show that as of 2008, the XKeyscore platform was used to nab 300 alleged terrorists around the world. Another describes how the NSA determines identities of alleged terrorists who access Internet forums.
At least 41 billion records were collected and stored in a single 30-day period in 2012, according to the report, which also says XKeyscore collects more than 20 terabytes of information daily, including emails, chats, social media interactions, and even browsing histories all in real-time.
For anyone out there who still thought their Facebook chats were private, that ship had clearly sailed by 2008.