The Snowden trove keeps on producing astonishing stories. From The Guardian:
Britain’s surveillance agency GCHQ, with aid from the US National Security Agency, intercepted and stored the webcam images of millions of internet users not suspected of wrongdoing, secret documents reveal.
GCHQ files dating between 2008 and 2010 explicitly state that a surveillance program codenamed Optic Nerve collected still images ofYahoo webcam chats in bulk and saved them to agency databases, regardless of whether individual users were an intelligence target or not.
In one six-month period in 2008 alone, the agency collected webcam imagery – including substantial quantities of sexually explicit communications – from more than 1.8 million Yahoo user accounts globally.
Yahoo reacted furiously to the webcam interception when approached by the Guardian. The company denied any prior knowledge of the program, accusing the agencies of “a whole new level of violation of our users’ privacy“.
How would you feel knowing that images of you naked, having sexy time, sit in a server somewhere in the UK, and may be permanently on record, just in case you think to cause trouble in the future. Sure would be a shame if a spy agency ruined your political or business career by leaking those images onto the web in an effort to take you down.