Secrecy and Security News
Newer News: June 2012
- Lawmakers nudge spy agencies into anti-drug fight on U.S. public land by Michael Doyle, McClatchy Newspapers, May 31. "The nation's spy agencies are drawn deeper into the fight against illegal-drug production on U.S. public land under an intelligence bill that the House of Representatives approved Thursday."
- Congressional fight gives peek at intelligence spending by Stephen Dinan, Washington Times, May 31. "Most of the recent battles over government spending have been dramatic, bloody and excruciatingly fought in public, but disputes over the approximately $80 billion budgeted every year for the intelligence community has generally been hidden - until now."
- House votes to outspend White House on spy bill by Kimberly Dozier, Associated Press, May 31. "The House voted to give the intelligence community a few billion dollars more Thursday than the White House wanted for next year's budget."
- Widening Secret Patents Seen as Costing Inventors' Rights by Susan Decker and Eric Engleman, BloombergBusinessweek, May 30. "Congress is asking whether sensitive patent applications should be kept under wraps to protect them from economic espionage, a question that implies curbing the ability of inventors to promote their ideas globally."
- Secret Court Rulings Kept Out of Public View After U.S. Review by Seth Stern, BloombergBusinessweek, May 29. "The U.S. hasn't declassified any opinions by the court that approves surveillance of foreigners under a review process begun two years ago to determine whether any could be made public."
- Fewer new documents classified as secret, report finds by Sean Reilly, Federal Times, May 29. "The government is creating fewer new classified documents containing national security secrets, according to a new report released Tuesday. But at least one expert questions the findings' validity."
- DoJ Says No FISA Court Opinions Have Been Declassified Since 2010, reply to FOIA request, May 8 (postmarked May 23). "We did not locate any responsive records subject to FOIA."
- White House Gives Moviemakers the Scoop on Osama bin Laden Raid by Eli Lake, The Daily Beast, May 23. "For years in Washington, top-level access to the Pentagon and intelligence community officials was dished out to select reporters who had proven their chops on the beat for newspapers, wires, networks, and magazines. But in Obama's Washington, the rules are changing."
- Deadly drones and the classified conundrum by Suzanne Kelly, CNN Security Clearance, May 23. "The high-powered U.S. aerial delivery system of Hellfire missiles to suspected terrorist targets overseas has to be the worst kept secret in Washington. Better known as the 'drone program,' there are lingering questions over whether the program that is no longer secret remains 'classified'."
- U.S. Casualties Drop Sharply in Afghanistan by Mark Thompson, Time Battleland, May 15. "A new Congressional Research service report is out detailing a steep decline in U.S. casualties in Afghanistan so far this year."
- Classification Follies by Julian Sanchez, CATO@Liberty, May 14. "An amusing anecdote about the absurd excesses of our system for classifying "sensitive" documents comes by way of the Federation of American Scientists' Project on Government Secrecy."
- DoD - Defense Industrial Base Cyber Security Information Sharing, interim final rule, Federal Register, May 11. "Cyber threats to DIB unclassified information systems represent an unacceptable risk of compromise of DoD information and pose an imminent threat to U.S. national security and economic security interests."
- Leak About Al Qaeda Plot and Double Agent Helps CIA, Could Scare Terrorists by Tara McKelvey, The Daily Beast, May 10. "The disclosure of a covert action and about the double agent involved in the thwarted plot is highly unusual, but the leak gives the impression the CIA has reach--and may help Americans by throwing terrorists off balance."
- Boxes of top secret documents go missing by Aaron Mehta and R. Jeffrey Smith, iWatch News, May 4. "Security lapses blamed on systemic mismanagement at a federal records center."
- Government Surveillance Requests Up In 2011, Report Says by Andrea Stone, Huffington Post, May 4. "The federal government submitted 1,745 applications in 2011 to a secret intelligence court to investigate -- mostly through wiretapping -- suspected cases of terrorism and espionage, a 10.5 percent increase over the year before, according to a Justice Department report released Friday."
- US requests for secret spying warrants rose to nearly 2K in 2011, and not a single one was rejected by Xeni Jardin, Boing Boing, May 3. "The Federation of American Scientists reports today that the US Justice Department made 1,745 requests last year to the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court for permission to wiretap electronic communications or search for physical evidence in counter-terrorism cases."
- 3 Theories About the Air Force's Mystery Space Plane, X-37B by Sharon Weinberger, Popular Mechanics, May 1. "The U.S. Air Force is planning another flight of its mysterious X-37B spaceplane, but still won't say what it's doing up there. Here, we examine three theories about the X-37B's purpose."
- Hide patents to foil invention thieves, urges Congress by Paul Marks, New Scientist, May 1. "More than 5000 US patents have never seen the light of day because their exploitation by an enemy state has been deemed a threat to US national security. Now Congress is arguing there's a new reason to keep patent applications secret: economic security."
- As White House Choreographs Raid Anniversary, Bin Laden Death Photos Remain Secret by Eric Lach, TPM Muckraker, May 1. "Obama and his re-election campaign have embraced bin Laden's death as one of the president's signature achievements, and are currently using it to bludgeon Mitt Romney, but photographs of that achievement are still considered a national security risk."
Older News: April 2012