Saturday, September 12, 2009

PBS NOVA - The Spy Factory

For the first time on television, NOVA exposes the hidden world of the high-tech, 21st-century eavesdropping carried out by the National Security Agency. Today, the NSA is the world's largest intelligence agency, three times the size of the CIA and far more secret. Its mission is to eavesdrop on the world from cell phones in Europe to pay phones in Afghanistan to e-mail messages from Pakistan to Baghdad. But since 9/11, it has also turned its giant ear inward, listening in without warrant on thousands of American citizens, many of whom are on the government's secret watch list, now more than half-a-million names long. Based on the 2008 best-seller The Shadow Factory by journalist James Bamford, "The Spy Factory" is a gripping investigation of the NSA from its tragic failures leading up to the 9/11 attacks to its secret listening rooms currently installed in the nation's telecom networks, and more generally from the threat to privacy to the effectiveness of high-tech surveillance in the age of terrorism.

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