Internet Spying and You: What’s With All the Spying?
Ever wonder how long the various intelligence agencies in the United States have been spying on the Internet? This question has often been asked in the most paranoid corners of the Internet on blogs and tweets from comment sections of very questionable sites. With this said, and with the knowledge that information is areas difficult to attain, we will attempt to answer this question.
Is a common myth that the Internet in the form that is now slowly evolved over time to produce what we see and what we have available to us today. This is somewhat true however what was behind the initial spark that created the Internet? Well that would be national defense, the NSA, and the CIA. They were all there from its inception and presumably throughout its growth and today. Everyone knows that the military was behind the birth of the Internet, but how has the intelligence community influenced its growth?
It should be noted that surveillance of ARPANET, the seed from which our current Internet grew, was absolutely legal as it was wholly owned by the US military. The defense intelligence communities built ARPANET as a means of communication should normal means be disrupted due to nuclear war. So this of course means it makes sense that the above-mentioned agencies would spy on. This in of itself is not a problem but since ARPANET is the framework for the current Internet how has this monitoring continued?
ARPANET was the first packet switched network and was born on October 29, 1969 when UCLA made the first connection with researchers at Stanford University. ARPANET was not immediate success, and had a very difficult time getting started altogether. In the early 70s its funding was nearly pulled due to lack of results and was referred to as "a highway system with no cars”.
What is clear is that the intelligence agencies of the United States were directly involved in building the largest interconnected network in history, or that shall ever be, and that they were instrumental in creating the tools that we use today on the Internet. That being said it should be no surprise when read about collaborations between ISPs and the NSA, or how the government might be reading your e-mails. This type of government intrusion may be a shock to some Americans who are used to a certain degree of privacy, but to the technicians working with the NSA and other government agencies is no shock at all.
Remember that the technology that these Internet companies are using to do business, and the tools that they use to provide services, were either built directly or indirectly by the intelligence group of the United States. That doesn't mean that the US government's hands are on everything what it means is the seed from which everything grew was directly created by the US military. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, but it does mean that if you're on the Internet is not private. Don't be surprised.