- How to stream Bears vs. Redskins on Monday Night Football 6 Years Ago
- What are the best alternatives to the electoral college? Today 6:30 AM
- The best PS4 games you can’t play anywhere else Today 6:00 AM
- How to watch the 2019 Emmy Awards Today 5:00 AM
- How to stream ‘Power’ season 6, episode 5 Today 4:00 AM
- Former developer at software company deletes his code to protest its ties to ICE Saturday 4:21 PM
- A mysterious website is doxing Hong Kong protesters and journalists Saturday 1:44 PM
- The best ‘Skyrim’ followers and how to get them Saturday 1:26 PM
- Why Joel Osteen gets cyberbullied every time Houston floods Saturday 12:40 PM
- How to stream Jets vs. Patriots in Week 3 Saturday 12:39 PM
- 10 indie dating simulator games you should be playing Saturday 12:31 PM
- How to stream Packers vs. Broncos in Week 3 Saturday 12:14 PM
- Saudi crown prince’s former adviser suspended from Twitter Saturday 11:57 AM
- How to stream Cowboys vs. Dolphins in Week 3 Saturday 11:57 AM
- YouTuber to pay restitution after a teen fan died copying her video Saturday 10:36 AM
France’s “Big Brother” collects massive amounts of metadata on citizens
It’s not exactly PRISM, but “Big Brother” collects metadata on all of France’s calls, texts and emails.
Maybe France has PRISM too.
The paper Le Monde dropped a blockbuster report Thursday that France’s DGSE intelligence agency, like the U.S.’s NSA, has a massive Internet program that tracks all French Internet and phone communications.
The crux of the DGSE’s program, unnamed but referred to informally by Le Monde as “France’s Big Brother,” seems to be collecting mass amounts of metadata, according to Le Monde‘s report. That means it tracks information about communications—who you call, how long your conversations last, and who and when you email and text.
This echoes the NSA’s practice, ramped up in the wake of the PATRIOT Act, of collecting massive amounts of metadata on its own citizens. That practice was made explicit at the beginning of June, when the Guardian broke the news that Verizon, and likely every major U.S. phone carrier, reports the metadata of every single call made to or from American soil.
Big Brother is a big operation, according to Le Monde. It has a budget of €600 million ($774.5 million US), and nearly five thousand dedicated employees.
The report doesn’t confirm that France has the equivalent of PRISM, a still fairly mysterious program that lets the NSA legally tap American companies, like Google and Facebook, for their users’ content. But it’s easy to imagine that France, like the U.K. and Netherlands, has a working relationship with the NSA to get that data and supplement it with metadata profiles.
Photo by wonker/Flickr, remix by Fernando Alfonso III
A former senior politics reporter for the Daily Dot, Kevin Collier focuses on privacy, cybersecurity, and issues of importance to the open internet. Since leaving the Daily Dot in March 2016, he has served as a reporter for Vocativ and a cybersecurity correspondent for BuzzFeed.