back to article Germany dumps Verizon for Deutsche Telekom over NSA spying

The German government has said it will cancel its contract with US telecoms provider Verizon, citing spying fears. "The pressures on networks as well as the risks from highly-developed viruses or Trojans are rising," the country's Interior Ministry told Reuters on Thursday. "Furthermore, the ties revealed between foreign …

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  1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    Yeah right ....

    >"The US government cannot compel us to produce our customers' data stored in data centres outside the US, "

    Really? The US government can't request a US company's help in getting data on potential foreign enemies? So the US government only uses Verison to spy on US citizen's data held in US data centers !

    >and if it attempts to do so, we would challenge that attempt in a court.

    That would be a secret court where the government doesn't have to provide any evidence before it makes a ruling on you.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Yeah right ....

      And Verizon and their executives in the US cannot talk about it either.

    2. Salts

      Re: Yeah right ....

      Agreed and with luck the backlash will continue and hit the US in the profit margins of their major corporates, then there could be a hope of something getting done.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "The US cannot compel us to produce customers' data stored in data centres outside the US"

      Yeah, that's working out real well for Microsoft and its Dublin data centre-- NOT!! I think all these companies are in denial. When will they wake up? Or rather when will their spin / corporate PR departments wake up and accept that they're talking complete bollox... Oh wait, never!!!

      "Verizon said that there was nothing to fear from US spy agencies.".. Oh really? Ask the French and Brazilian companies who lost out to US competitors!... Ask the UN Diplomats and Mexican and Brazilian and German politicians who were spied on!... Fucking corporate spin! .. So sick of it!!

    4. James 100

      Re: Yeah right ....

      Note the wording ... cannot COMPEL ... but can ask nicely and pay them to do it?

      On an international level there's probably something like the Vodafone arrangement The Reg featured recently: Verizon, AT&T etc getting paid by the US to keep a tap in place on the backbone links. No German law or German company involved there anyway.

      So, for traffic staying within Germany ... does it just happen to pass through a US military base/embassy/consulate/other? So, Verizon Germany isn't actually tapping anything itself ... just looking the other way while someone else does it in a back room somewhere. (It's even plausibly deniable: of course that big US base needs a 10G DWDM connection ... and of course you do that by routing the backbone DWDM ring through their comms room, via an ADM that splits out their 10G lambda - whoops, what's that? It happens to be splitting out all the other backbone traffic too? I wonder how that happened...)

    5. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Yeah right ....

      "and if it attempts to do so, we would challenge that attempt in a court"

      Why would a "German" company challenge a US request for data in a court? If, as Verizon Germany claims, they are a German Company, they can just tell NSA or whoever to fuck off. No need to waste time or money on a court case.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Good for Germany!

    Its well known that the old Bell system companies, like Verizon, are the most supine of the NSA's partners in surveillance. Now, I doubt Deutsche Telekom is much better, but at least this puts more pressure on America's corporate powers-that-be to demand real surveillance reform.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Good for Germany!

      German government is just one customer. This will become interesting if the German industry as a whole follows.

      1. Anonymous Blowhard

        Re: Good for Germany!

        Or even the whole of Europe, except maybe the UK where GCHQ shares data with the NSA and lets Huawei certify their own products as "secure"; seems like we're everyone's bitch.

    2. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: Marketing Hack Re: Good for Germany!

      "....but at least this puts more pressure on America's corporate powers-that-be to demand real surveillance reform." OK, before you make me laugh any harder, go read up on globalisation and realise that Deutsche Telekom stock will be held by just as many US people and institutions as Verizon's. What the Merkel taketh away (with a little bit of protectionism dressed up as security concerns), the Merkel also giveth back. And the NSA and GCHQ will still be tapped into all the cables.

      1. BlueGreen

        Re: Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Matt Bryant

        "and realise that Deutsche Telekom stock will be held by just as many US people and institutions as Verizon's"

        How does mere stock ownership mean that the US's spying ability is maintained? Will the US stockholders force DT to accept data taps?

        "And the NSA and GCHQ will still be tapped into all the cables."

        Please provide evidence for your assertion.

        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
          Facepalm

          Re: Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Matt Bryant

          "....How does mere stock ownership mean that the US's spying ability is maintained?...." It doesn't, it simply explains that in the modern World of globalised stock markets, if Verizon stockholders feel some pain then the ones holding DT stocks will recoup it, and seeing as a lot of both stocks is actually held by investments funds, the actual financial impact to the States is minimal (especially as Verizon Germany is a separate company). Verizon may grumble a bit but the investment funds will just shrug and continue as they were.

          "...Please provide evidence for your assertion." The majority of the tapped cables are submarine cables outside Germany - no change there unless Germany goes and lays completely new cables worldwide. Even if they did the NSA and GCHQ would just covertly tap the new cables, teh US having at least one submarine specially equipped for such tasks. And the new DT setup will not affect the airborne transmissions (such as mobes) that the GCHQ already fish out of the skies. End result - no change. Do you really think DT are going to go the expense of laying completely new land cables throughout Germany? If they do then what is to stop the NSA ot GCHQ subverting the new kit in exactly the same way they did the old?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Matt Bryant

            > The majority of the tapped cables are submarine cables outside Germany - no change there unless Germany goes and lays completely new cables worldwide. Even if they did the NSA and GCHQ would just covertly tap the new cables, teh US having at least one submarine specially equipped for such tasks.

            That's why end-to-end-encryption is the way to go.

            1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
              Big Brother

              Re: Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Matt Bryant

              "That's why end-to-end-encryption is the way to go." A good start, but you have to bear in mind that your encryption is only as good as the end-point security - if your attacker can get inside your network to the places where the messages have been decrypted (as the NSA appear to have done with Google), then the encryption does nothing more than give a false sense of security. And remember, decryption by bribe is a lot cheaper and usually faster than trying to crack encryption on a supercomputer.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Matt Bryant

                > "That's why end-to-end-encryption is the way to go." A good start, but you have to bear in mind that your encryption is only as good as the end-point security - if your attacker can get inside your network...

                I'm not expecting the spying to end. But being able to just listen on a cable and getting vast amounts of data is making it too simple. All traffic that's encrypted requires the spooks to hack someone's network or crack someone's key (unless where they've subverted the encryption). A hell of a lot more effort. The intel they could glean would be vastly reduced.

          2. BlueGreen

            Re: Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Matt Bryant

            > It doesn't, it simply explains that in the modern World of globalised stock markets, if Verizon stockholders feel some pain then the ones holding DT stocks will recoup it,

            agreed, but it will put economic pressure on US companies - if a US company's shares decline for a reason while a non-US company's rise for the same reason... you see what I'm getting at.

            > The majority of the tapped cables are submarine cables outside Germany - no change there unless Germany goes and lays completely new cables worldwide. Even if they did the NSA and GCHQ would just covertly tap the new cables, teh US having at least one submarine specially equipped for such tasks....what is to stop the NSA ot GCHQ subverting the new kit in exactly the same way they did the old?

            Hmm. Again, local anger. US companies are suffering (<http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/06/19/microsoft_nsa_fallout/>), if the same anger comes down on the UK, yes, I think there will be change.

            > Do you really think DT are going to go the expense of laying completely new land cables throughout Germany?

            Perhaps, but perhaps not - there may be other sanctions that would cost the UK/US. If you think a company would stand by whiile being screwed over by another, well, I'm not so sure they would. There may be technical workarounds to keep the cables but avoid being tapped even if the tap is in place. Maybe, not completely sure.

            1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
              Facepalm

              Re: BoringGreen Re: Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Matt Bryant

              "....there may be other sanctions that would cost the UK/US...." At which point the US companies opens a protectionism case in the ICC whilst the US opens a complaint with the WTO. For the UK it is even easier, the EU rules prohibiting selective protectionism inside the EU. Merkel would have to provide hard evidence of any threat, which even the Germans have admitted they do not have with Snowjob's claim that Merkel's mobe calls were 'listened to'. I suspect one of the results if this does go ahead will be that Verizon Germany threatens to take the German authorities to court.

              1. BlueGreen

                Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Matt Bryant

                > At which point the US companies opens a protectionism case in the ICC whilst the US opens a complaint with the WTO.

                Seriously, you think that'll fly? There's enough evidence that the US & UK have been doing some dodgy stuff, including industrial espionage, and you think the WTO will overlook that? You don't seem to understand the anger that this has caused. This is hurting US companies now - see link in last post.

                > I suspect one of the results if this does go ahead will be that Verizon Germany threatens to take the German authorities to court.

                A german company taking the german gov't to a german court. I wonder how that will turn out.

                > Merkel would have to provide hard evidence of any threat, which even the Germans have admitted they do not have with Snowjob's claim that Merkel's mobe calls were 'listened to'.

                Well, this is news, can you provide an explicit ref for this "do not have [hard evidence]" claim, thanks.

                1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                  FAIL

                  Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Matt Bryant

                  "....There's enough evidence that the US & UK have been doing some dodgy stuff...." LOL, you're so funny when you do that rabid bleating thing! You do understand that the evidence would have to be specific, ie the Germans would have to provide specific proof of an example of the NSA or GCHQ intercepting an internal and secure German communication. It's not just good enough to go to court and say "Well, everyone knows they do it, m'lud."

                  ".....You don't seem to understand the anger that this has caused....." I get angry about people that drop litter in my local park, it doesn't mean I can go around locking up every teenager I see just because I think the teens are the ones dropping the litter. Once again, the ideas of laws and evidence seem to be a bit beyond you. You may want to consider - again - that even Merkel's people have admitted they have no hard proof of the hacking of her mobe.

                  ".....A german company taking the german gov't to a german court. I wonder how that will turn out....." I'm not sure what you're saying here, either you seem to think Germany has such a repressive legal system that no company would dare take on the German government (surely a 'bad thing' that you sheeple would be bleating against?) or you baaaah-lieve that Merkel would be able to fix the court case (again, shouldn't you be bleating about injustice/oppression?). BTW, you seem to not realise that the German government is not above EU law, you may want to go read up on what's called the Volkswagen Law case (http://www.dw.de/eu-will-take-germany-to-court-over-volkswagen-law/a-3390049).

                  "....this is news, can you provide an explicit ref for this "do not have [hard evidence]" claim...." You sheeple are so lazy, or rather so unused to actually researching anything, probably because you're so used to being spoonfed your POV by Oprah and the like. You could start here (http://www.businessweek.com/news/2014-06-04/germany-says-nsa-spying-must-have-consequences-amid-probe), where the German authorities that have opened an investigation admit they only have 'clues', no actual hard evidence, and where a second investigation into general 'mass spying on Germans' by the NSA and GCHQ has already been dropped due to lack of evidence. Enjoy!

                  1. BlueGreen

                    Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Matt Bryant

                    > LOL, you're so funny when you do that rabid bleating thing!

                    I was trying to keep the discussion polite and civil and constructive. If you wish so soon to descend to namecalling then ok, but I can do it better.

                    > I get angry about people that drop litter in my local park, it doesn't mean I can go around locking up every teenager I see just because I think the teens are the ones dropping the litter

                    It's pretty well beyond reasonable doubt now, and given the sensitivity of the claim, if true, the EU can and likely will get pretty blunt with the US. If it was thought a teen was accused of stabbing someone in the park, it would be treated more seriously. I don't think you get it.

                    > You sheeple are so lazy, or rather so unused to actually researching anything, probably because blah blah

                    If you make a claim, post evidence there, don't expect others to do your work for you.

                    > You could start here (http://www.businessweek.com/news/2014-06-04/germany-says-nsa-spying-must-have-consequences-amid-probe)

                    2nd sentence says The Federal Prosecutor’s office in Karlsruhe said it had uncovered sufficient initial evidence to probe whether U.S. spies had violated German law. So they do have hard evidence - your words, from your own link.

                    As for the legality of the US action, well, <http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jan/09/nsa-gchq-illegal-european-parliamentary-inquiry> says "The inquiry by the European parliament's civil liberties committee says the activities of America's National Security Agency (NSA) and its British counterpart, GCHQ, appear to be illegal [...]."

                    And <http://www.dailydot.com/news/prism-nsa-government-surveillance-europe-law/> says ""I think it is indeed a violation of EU laws," Sophie in 't Veld, a Dutch Member of European Parliament who helped draft the EU's strict data protection laws, told the Daily Dot."

                    So it seems illegal. The EU will probably clarify that soonish I expect. Which way do you think it will fall?

                    Am curious: what is it that so frightens you that it makes you desperate for security that (you think) this spying will provide?

                    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                      FAIL

                      Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Matt Bryant

                      ".....It's pretty well beyond reasonable doubt now...." So you don't have any actual evidence to back up your bleated claim? What a surprise - not! You really need to stop,wasting any more bandwidth until you have read this (http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evidence_(law)), especially the bit about hearsay. Until then, you are just failing.

                      ".....2nd sentence says The Federal Prosecutor’s office in Karlsruhe said it had uncovered sufficient initial evidence to probe whether U.S. spies had violated German law. So they do have hard evidence - your words, from your own link....." So, what is this 'evidence'? Nothing more than Poitras and Greenwald's money-making. As shown by the fact the first case for 'mass spying' has already been dropped. The second case hinges entirely on Snowjob's claims. Once again, you are simply too stupid to understand that evidence needs to be demonstratable - you have shown no evidence and not demonstrated any not tested it's validity, you have simply rebleated what you have been told to baaaah-lieve. The second case is just political manoeuvring and will go nowhere, being as quietly dropped as the first case.

                      ".....appear to be illegal...." And the case with the European Court of Justice, the people that actually enact the laws and rule on such, as opposed to the politicians trying to score Brownie points with the sheeple, that would be where? Oh, there isn't one, because outside the confines of unelected and politicised 'civil liberties' committees there is NO LEGAL CASE. If you wish to claim otherwise, please do show the court case number from the European Court of Justice website (http://curia.europa.eu/jcms/jcms/j_6/).

                      "....what is it that so frightens you that it makes you desperate for security that (you think) this spying will provide?" I've been out and seen the World, you most obviously have not. Your ostrich-like approach, due to your spoonfed socio-political baaaah-liefs, is simply amusingly naive. I notice, after you bleated long and loud about there being no need for such surveillance, that you have steered clear of the thread on the jihadi who was caught from EXACTLY such intelligence (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/06/25/us_judge_rules_warrantless_snooping_okay_in_terrorist_bomber_case/). I suppose if that jihadi had succeeded in avoiding conventional policing and committed a suicide bombing at the Portland Christmas event, you would simply switch tack and start bleating that the NSA was a waste of money because they didn't detect him. In your blinkered eyes, the NSA is damned if they catch such jihadis and damned if they don't. I am curious as to why you are so anti-institutional, did you have a troubled upbringing or was it just so boring you feel the need to ape those around you that you consider 'rebellious' and 'cool'?

                      1. BlueGreen

                        Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Plump & Bleaty

                        Regrettably, I see name calling is the order of the day. So be it. Prepare to be gently taunted yet again.

                        > ".....It's pretty well beyond reasonable doubt now...." So you don't have any actual evidence to back up your bleated claim?

                        Again, plumpo The Federal Prosecutor’s office in Karlsruhe said it had uncovered sufficient initial evidence to probe whether U.S. spies had violated German law. The german gov't thinks there is.

                        > ".....2nd sentence says The Federal Prosecutor’s office in Karlsruhe said it had uncovered sufficient initial evidence to probe whether U.S. spies had violated German law. So they do have hard evidence - your words, from your own link....." So, what is this 'evidence'?

                        Again, enough for them to open a probe. But perhaps I can suggest you have a quiet word with the silly krauts and let them know you think they're doing it wrong. I'm sure they'll be grateful for saving them the cost.

                        > Once again, you are simply too stupid to understand that evidence needs to be demonstratable

                        The german gov't think is is. Enough to open a probe. Oops, is there an echo in here?

                        > ".....appear to be illegal...." And the case with the European Court of Justice, the people that actually enact the laws and rule on such, as opposed to the politicians trying to score Brownie points with the sheeple, that would be where?

                        Bodies in the EU say it likely is illegal. "would appear to be illegal" and "I think it is..." I presume this will go on to get tested in court. Legal opinion on unclear cases tends to precede. Like I said, and you didn't answer, "The EU will probably clarify that soonish I expect. Which way do you think it will fall?". Which way plumpness? Bear in mind that if a society finds an act repulsive it tends to pass laws on the subject, so again, my scuttly little cotton-bud, which way will it go?

                        > "....what is it that so frightens you that it makes you desperate for security that (you think) this spying will provide?" I've been out and seen the World, you most obviously have not

                        hmm, deeply incorrect my little plumpgasm. In fact, I'm not sure how much out of your little corner of the south of england you've actually seen, other than on telly. As before and as ever you fail to get that my position is a little more complex than you choose to represent. Here it is yet a bloody gain, please read it this time. Silly ewe.

                        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                          FAIL

                          Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Plump & Bleaty

                          "....Prepare to be gently taunted yet again...." You mean be bored by your usual evasions, denials, desperate changes of tack and - frankly - lies. Do you ever stop to think how embarrassing your failure must be to your parents?

                          ".....The german gov't thinks there is...." Aw, you're so naive! All that means is the politicians told the police to open a case based on the hearsay evidence of Greenwald and Poitras, which they got from Snowjob. Like I said, no hard evidence, otherwise they would have moved straight to a trial and not be starting a preliminary investigation.

                          ".....Bodies in the EU say it likely is illegal....." Politicised bodies with no legal standing, you mean. And I take it from your evasion and repetition that you failed to find a case on the European Court of Justice website, as I predicted.

                          ".....I presume this will go on to get tested in court....." You 'presume' or you want to baaaah-lieve? What is the hold up, they had enough time to debate it so why couldn't they start a case? Oh, that would be because the actual legally trained people told them it was a waste of time. Just you like you are.

                          So, to recap - you have no evidence other than hearsay; the Germans have already dropped one case for lack of evidence and only have Snowjob's hearsay for the second case (they couldn't even find the claimed software bug on Merkel's phone); there is no actual European Court of Justice case, just a lot of hot air from popularist Euro MPs and non-elected handwringer types; and you are still in denial. Enjoy!

                          1. BlueGreen

                            Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Plump & Bleaty

                            > and - frankly - lies

                            sigh. reported for abuse, yet again.

                            > All that means is the politicians told the police to open a case based on the hearsay evidence

                            There's enough documentary evidence to start the german gov't moving. You can call that hearsay if you wish. Plumpo can call anything hearsay if plumpo doesn't like it. It's strong enough for them to get started.

                            > Like I said, no hard evidence, otherwise they would have moved straight to a trial and not be starting a preliminary investigation.

                            Don't be silly, one doesn't necessarily go from evidence directly to trial. One can collect more evidence, build a case.

                            > ".....Bodies in the EU say it likely is illegal....." Politicised bodies with no legal standing, you mean

                            Dearie me, if they have no legal standing they don't have any legal influence, is that right? The EU's civil liberties committee is there for the prettiness and I'm sure Sophie in 't Veld is rather hot too. Ah, but you said 'Politicised bodies...' which means plumpo whishes to rewrite reality to fit his need to win.

                            > And I take it from your evasion and repetition that you failed to find a case on the European Court of Justice website, as I predicted.

                            Because a case has not occurred does not preclude it from ever occurring. The future has not yet been written. Sheep have a poor temporal grasp, so I understand your confusion.

                            > Oh, that would be because the actual legally trained people told them it was a waste of time

                            ref please.

                            > they couldn't even find the claimed software bug on Merkel's phone

                            show me where it was claimed that there was a 'software bug' (making things up again?) And why would that even be necessary if the NSA can tap pretty well anything?

                            Oh, and another admission by silence, you haven't been far from the grazing fields down south, eh? Not gone much further than surrey after all?

                            1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                              FAIL

                              Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Plump & Bleaty

                              "....reported for abuse, yet again...." Careful, old gaz doesn't like gratuitous use of the 'abuse' button. Especially when all you are trying to do is another evasion.

                              "....There's enough documentary evidence to start the german gov't moving...." Where? Snowjob's 'revelation' is just hearsay, the Germans need either a recording of one of Merkel's conversations that they can prove came via the NSA, or to find the actual software or hardware 'bug' used to tap into her coms. At this point they have neither. Once again, go back and read up on the difference between evidence and hearsay.

                              "....One can collect more evidence, build a case....." And they already dropped one case, the one trying to prove the NSA committed 'mass spying' on German citizens. The second will be quietly dropped as soon as it stops making Merkel and co political hay. http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/05/28/germany_says_nein_on_nsa_hacking_trials/

                              "....The EU's civil liberties committee is there for the prettiness...." So you can list their legal authorities? Oh, no you can't, and not just because you're just as ill-informed as usual, but because they have no legal authority. They are just a political talking shop, that is the reality you want to deny. The European Court of Justice has the legal authority to try a case, which is why you are so desperate to avoid admitting no case there means no EU case, full-stop. Please do try and cope with the disappointment, you should be used to being proven wrong again, yet again.

                              "....Because a case has not occurred does not preclude it from ever occurring...." Like I said, if it is such an open-and-shut case of 'illegality' as you claimed, why no case? The reason is the so-called 'illegality' is nothing more than political opinion, they have zero evidence to actually back it up with. That is why there is no Euro Court of Justice case.

                              "....Sheep have a poor temporal grasp, so I understand your confusion....." You're talking from your sheeple experience, I assume. Finally, something you are actually qualified to discuss!

                              ".....show me where it was claimed that there was a 'software bug' (making things up again?) And why would that even be necessary if the NSA can tap pretty well anything?...." Der Spiegel originally claimed Merkel's phone was 'bugged' as in it had either malware or a physical bug installed. When this started to look incorrect, suddenly they started claiming the top floor of the US Embassy in Berlin was being used for mobile interceptions, and 'may have monitored Merkel's calls'. The backtracking didn't stop there. The German government initially insisted they had 'evidence', then also switched to 'may have been intercepted' when they realised they actually had SFA. When challenged to provide either (a) proof that the NSA had been able to intercept and decrypt Merkel's calls from the airborne transmission, or (b) been able to intercept and decrypt them after they hit a landline, the Germans had to admit they had SFA evidence. In short, just the Der Spiegel article. And who's 'revelations' were Der Speigel publishing at the time? Why, little old Snowjob - I wonder if they got a nice boost in circulations form the claims?

                              "....you haven't been far from the grazing fields down south...." You obviously missed the other threads where I listed the places on five continents I have lived and/or worked. Oh crap, you probably have problems counting to five....

                              1. BlueGreen

                                Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Plump & Bleaty

                                > "....There's enough documentary evidence to start the german gov't moving...." Where?

                                In what snowden released.

                                > The second will be quietly dropped as soon as it stops making Merkel and co political hay. http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/05/28/germany_says_nein_on_nsa_hacking_trials/

                                You *may* have a point here. Let's wait and see. But may I also point out that if I or anyone propose anything unproven you sqawk like a strangled parrot, if you it suits you then you say it and expect everyone to swallow it: "The second will be quietly dropped as soon as..." Your opinion and I'm supposed to accept it? You object to what you refer to as hearsay but your opinion rides?

                                > "....The EU's civil liberties committee is there for the prettiness...." So you can list their legal authorities? Oh, no you can't, and not just because you're just as ill-informed as usual, but because they have no legal authority

                                Like I quoted at you before, this time with the relevant word in bold:

                                "

                                The Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) is in charge of most of the legislation and democratic oversight for policies linked to the transformation of the European Union in the area of freedom, security and justice (AFSJ) (art. 3 TEU).

                                "

                                > Like I said, if it is such an open-and-shut case of 'illegality' as you claimed, why no case? The reason is the so-called 'illegality' is nothing more than political legal opinion, [...]

                                Per my previous 2 quotes, FTFY

                                > Der Spiegel originally claimed Merkel's phone was 'bugged' as in it had either malware or a physical bug installed

                                Don't believe you. Here's what der spiegel says <http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/cover-story-how-nsa-spied-on-merkel-cell-phone-from-berlin-embassy-a-930205.html> "From the roof of the embassy, a special unit of the CIA and NSA can apparently monitor a large part of cellphone communication in the government quarter. And there is evidence that agents based at Pariser Platz recently targeted the cellphone that Merkel uses the most." No mention of a hardware or software implant. Just 'monitoring'

                                > Just policy input, no legal authority whatsoever.

                                If you're referring to the EU comittee on civil liberties, see above quote (yet again).

                                > Now let's look at the ECoJ:

                                I didn't raise the ECoJ, you did.

                                > And you claimed the civil liberties bunch thought the NSA had 'broken EU law',

                                I did not. It was legal opinion that it *may* or *likely* to have been illegal. Stop deliberately misquoting me.

                                1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                                  FAIL

                                  Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Plump & Bleaty

                                  Aw, it's always so much fun to watch the sheeple talking themselves into knots! Don't worry, you're not alone, the rest of the flock is just as confused as you are. They have all been told The Man was listening to Merkel's sex chats with Putin, etc., etc., and you've been told by the shepherds to go bleat loudly, but none of you actually stopped to ask "So, what are the NSA actually accused of here?"

                                  "....In what snowden released...." And that was your (and the flock's) first failure - in your rush to bleat, you forgot to ask "So, what has Snowjob released?" The core of the claim that the NSA was listening to Merkel's mobe was a Die Spiegel article. Eventually, after much humming and harring, Die Spiegel admitted all they had was the claim that Merkel's personal number appeared on a list Snowjob had pilfered from the NSA's SCS (Special Collection Service). That is the actual extent of their evidence that Merkel's calls were being intercepted - no actual memo saying "Hey Bob, did you hear that tape of Merkel calling a chat line last night?", no actual report analysing the content of her calls, not even a mention of Merkel as a target for interception, just her number on a list (http://web.archive.org/web/20131218181336/http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/26/nsa-surveillance-brazil-germany-un-resolution). As even the Guardian noted, "The nature of the monitoring of Merkel's mobile phone is not clear from the files, Der Spiegel said. It might be that the chancellor's conversations were recorded, or that her contacts were simply assessed." But don't worry, Merkel had votes to win, Die Spiegel had copy to sell, and Greenwald had a new book to plug, so it's not surprising the shepherds were whipping you and the rest of the flock into a fit of righteous bleating. Now go chew your cud elsewhere.

                                  1. BlueGreen

                                    Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Plump & Bleaty

                                    > , but none of you actually stopped to ask "So, what are the NSA actually accused of here?"

                                    Mass interception of private communications.

                                    > The core of the claim that the NSA was listening to Merkel's mobe was a Die Spiegel article.

                                    Oh. I thought it was due to THE DOCUMENTS THAT SNOWDEN RELEASED. You're an idiot.

                                    BTW <http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/06/04/us-germany-merkel-bugging-idUSKBN0EF11420140604> dated 4th June 2014

                                    "

                                    "Extensive preliminary investigations produced sufficient factual evidence that unknown U.S. intelligence officers tapped a mobile phone of Chancellor Angela Merkel," said a statement from Range's office.

                                    Although there is not yet a strong enough case to start legal proceedings, Range's office said he is still looking into wider allegations that both U.S. and British intelligence carried out "massive surveillance of the German population's telecommunications data".

                                    Range, who had told a German parliamentary committee earlier on Wednesday about his plans to open legal proceedings over the espionage, was due to hold a news conference at 5 p.m. (1500 GMT) at his office in the city of Karlsruhe. Justice Minister Heiko Maas told German radio earlier in the day that investigators would "have to take action" if it came to light that German law had been broken regarding Merkel's mobile phone or other surveillance revealed by Snowden.

                                    "

                                    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                                      FAIL

                                      Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Plump & Bleaty

                                      "...."Extensive preliminary investigations produced sufficient factual evidence that unknown U.S. intelligence officers tapped a mobile phone of Chancellor Angela Merkel," said a statement from Range's office....." Yeah, that 'factual evidence' was Merkel's number appearing on what Spiegel claimed was a list from Snowjob. And, and this is the really amusing bit, you really should have looked at who made the statement - not Merkel, not a senior Christian Democrat Union body, not some high-ranking minister in front of the TV cameras, just an uncredited statement. In politics, that is the equivalent of not even giving the job to the office junior, a mark of how no high-ranking politician actually wanted to back the statement with their name. Range has come out of the affair looking rather sheepish and shoutie, but then that's what Merkel wanted - lots of indignation to stir the voters but nothing to imply she was the one orchestrating the stirring. She even managed to throw in an alleged claim that the NSA were just as bad as the Stasi, rather ironic considering she used to work for the East German government that controlled the Stasi.

                                      "......THE DOCUMENTS THAT SNOWDEN RELEASED....." Snowjob hasn't released any documents, he has used journals to do the releasing. That's a pretty basic fact in the whole affair, you sure you've done any research into the matter?

                                      "....Range's office said he is still looking into wider allegations that both U.S. and British intelligence carried out "massive surveillance of the German population's telecommunications data"...." Yeah, that would be the second investigation that they have already dropped due to lack of evidence. Do at least try and keep up, you're embarrassing to even the sheeple now!

                                      1. BlueGreen

                                        Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Plump & Bleaty

                                        > Yeah, that 'factual evidence' was Merkel's number appearing on what Spiegel claimed was a list from Snowjob

                                        so, it came from snowden. Finally you've said it.

                                        > rather ironic considering she used to work for the East German government that controlled the Stasi.

                                        ref please plumpo. something solid, not hearsay please.

                                        > "......THE DOCUMENTS THAT SNOWDEN RELEASED....." Snowjob hasn't released any documents, he has used journals to do the releasing

                                        (giggle) You're still an idiot. Ok then, the documents that snowden 'liberated'. Better now?

                                        > Yeah, that would be the second investigation that they have already dropped due to lack of evidence.

                                        Ref please, showing that it had been dropped. The ref I provided is less than a month old. Ta.

                                        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                                          FAIL

                                          Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Plump & Bleaty

                                          ".....so, it came from snowden. Finally you've said it...." What I have said, and you have desperately avoided admitting, is that it is the only bit of 'evidence' and we only have Spiegel's word that it even came from Snowjob, or is even a real NSA SCS list. Just having a telephone number in a list is not the same as having proof that someone has been eavesdropping and analysing your calls, otherwise I could pick up the telephone directory and claim BT is eavesdropping on all of us.

                                          ".....ref please plumpo. something solid, not hearsay please....." That is worrying seeing as you have shown yourself incapable of distinguishing between hearsay and real evidence. We'll keep it easy so you stand a chance of following it. You can go check the Wikipedia article on Merkel, which mentions her voluntary and early involvement in the Communist youth movement "....at the Academy of Sciences, she became a member of the FDJ district board and secretary for "Agitprop" (Agitation and Propaganda). Merkel claimed that she was secretary for culture...." (http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angela_Merkel#Background_and_early_life). 'Agitation and propaganda' - sounds right up your street! Only Merkel has been accused of trying to hide her previous involvement from the German people (http://www.dw.de/merkel-hiding-things-in-her-past-biographer-says/a-16813375).

                                          ".....Ref please, showing that it had been dropped...." Already posted earlier in the thread. Even Pooties' propaganda tools have grudgingly admitted that case is dead, I'm surprised it hasn't reached the flock yet (http://rt.com/news/162120-germany-nsa-case-spying/). Maybe when they cover it on Sesame Street....

                          2. BlueGreen

                            Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Plump & Bleaty

                            Oh, and plumpo, maybe I read this wrong but from <http://www.europarl.europa.eu/committees/en/LIBE/home.html>

                            "

                            The Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) is in charge of most of the legislation and democratic oversight for policies linked to the transformation of the European Union in the area of freedom, security and justice (AFSJ) (art. 3 TEU).

                            "

                            So it kind of vaguely looks to me like they do have some legal standing.

                            1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                              FAIL

                              Re: BoringGreen Marketing Hack Good for Germany! @Plump & Bleaty

                              Try more than skim reading, or baaaah-lieving want you want to baaah-lieve: "....for policies...." Just policy input, no legal authority whatsoever. Now let's look at the ECoJ:

                              "It is the responsibility of the Court of Justice to ensure that the law is observed in the interpretation and application of the Treaties of the European Union and of the provisions laid down by the competent Community institutions." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/European_Court_of_Justice#Jurisdiction_and_powers)

                              So, your bunch of politicians advise on policy, the ECoJ has actual legal bods (judges from all 28 states) that try on disputes of EU law. And you claimed the civil liberties bunch thought the NSA had 'broken EU law', therefore the ONLY legally qualified to try the matter would be - wait for it! - the ECoJ! No case there (and there isn't, as you are desperate not to admit) means no case to answer. Oh, that was you failing again, BTW. But, if it is any consolation, you did make me laugh.

  3. OmgTheyLetMePostInTheUK

    Dear Verizon....

    Dear Verizon,

    I live in the USA and was born here. For decades the NSA and other government agencies have spied on anything and everything they possibly could, without regard for the laws of this country, without regard for the wishes of the congress, and without regard for the wishes of the citizens of this country. In fact, the NSA and most of the phone and wireless companies in the US lied to congress, and by extension, to the american people as well.

    So please, WAKEUP! Telephone and Wireless companies have worked secretly together with the NSA to file away tidbits of information on every single person on this planet that uses a phone of any kind. I knew about the San Francisco AT&T secret room with the NSA many years before Edward Snowden confirmed it. And if AT&T was doing it, so were every other non-foreign owned phone company. I talked to my friends about it for years, but almost none of then believed me back then, Edward Snowden woke them up. They came to me one at a time after Snowden proved it existed, and and each and every one of them has now completely changed their minds about anything the government says. Its sad. But it is well past time that US citizens wake up to the lies we are constantly being fed by our government, starting with the president (sadly), and going both up and down the chain of command from there..

    So please stop lying to the world. Only after our government ceases to spy on each and every person in this country will you or any other phone company be able to convince anyone that the spying is not happening, and it will most likely be many decades from now that anyone will believe that line. If you cannot get americans to believe it, how can you possibly think anyone else would believe it too? It was americans that were protected from spying by LAW! ONLY AMERICANS! But they have been, and are still, spying on each and every one of us.

    What did you think that $2.5 BILLION "secret" NSA data storage facility being built out in the Utah desert was supposed to store? Saturday morning cartoons for our children? Seriously!? Some numbers I saw awhile back seemed to indicate that once the facility was completely built out, that it should be able to store data on something in the ballpark of .... <DRUMROLL PLEASE> ... 13 BILLION PEOPLE.... Only 6 billion of us exist today. So why build a data tracking center for 13 billion people? But yes, some people still want to believe that the government only wants to store Saturday morning cartoons. *cough*

    1. Fatman

      Re: Dear Verizon....

      But it is well past time that US citizens wake up to the lies we are constantly being fed by our government, starting with the president (sadly), and going both up and down the chain of command from there..

      The problem is that the American public gives more of a rat's ass about who is the next American Idol than whipping its miscreant government back in line.

      This snow job is only possible because of the duplicity of so many different players.

      1. Jamie Jones Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: Dear Verizon....

        " The problem is that the American public gives more of a rat's ass about who is the next American Idol than whipping its miscreant government back in line.

        This snow job is only possible because of the duplicity of so many different players."

        Exactly the same here in Britain.

        If it's not Britain's Got Big Brothers X Factor Strictly On Ice Get Me Out Of Here, people don't care

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

    3. Gannon (J.) Dick

      Re: Dear Verizon....

      "For decades the NSA and other government agencies have spied on anything and everything they possibly could, without regard for the laws of this country, without regard for the wishes of the congress, and without regard for the wishes of the citizens of this country"

      My fellow, 'Merkin ... nice job, over all, one comment though:

      Hyperbole doesn't help, so I would say something like "two decades" to avoid the over-40 eyerolls.

      That said, please do not fail to mention this little factoid:

      a) The Phone system began as "Party Lines".

      b) Both the Central Exchange (which made private lines possible) and Telephone Booths (which made implementation of private conversations possible) were innovations made within two decades of the invention of the Telephone.

      So, within two decades of the invention of the Telephone, market forces led to innovations which promoted user privacy. The Telecommunications Industry could not compete against "market forces", except by realizing a monopoly. However, no such market forces exist in the general case; information exchange is both a utility and a commodity, therefore there is no expectation that any innovations promoting individual privacy will ever be forthcoming and a Government monopoly on private communications is non-essential to commerce. Why ?

      1. elDog

        Re: Dear Verizon.... @Gannon Dick (are you the boy who went to the WH, etc.)

        Your comment is a great example of trying to hijack a conversation through non-sequitor.

        Yeah, in the olden days we relied on messages being sent by pony/camel/courier express. They could be opened and read by anyone along the way 'cepting there might have been some waxy seal. So what.

        Physical mail facilities, central exchanges, ISPs - they all serve the same porpoise - more efficient routing at the cost of more control by someone.

        Ever since the ancient scribes wanted to send an important message to somewhere else, no matter the mechanism, they relied on some form of stealth.

        In the current world we need to use proven encryption (not NSA-sponsored EC) to make sure our message contents are secure but also to make sure that the sender and receiver are confident in the identities.

        Everything the NSA has done in this area has undercut this trust.

        I applaud every company and every country that finds ways to stuff it to the N/U/SA.

  4. Mephistro
    Happy

    "The US government cannot compel us to produce our customers' data stored in data centres outside the US"

    This statement reminds me of that episode of Breaking Bad where an undercover cop tells Badger that "the Constitution doesn't allow cops to lie to suspects" or words to that effect.

    It's really close to implying that the German Govt. is about as intelligent as a meth addict. He he he. Great!.

  5. Tree

    LIES?

    O'Bama never lies. See Joe Wilson.

  6. crayon
    FAIL

    "At which point the US companies opens a protectionism case in the ICC ..."

    How does commercial disputes warrant a hearing in the International Criminal Court? Nevermind that the USA, along with fellow rogue countries, Israel and Sudan have decided to withdraw from the ICC.

    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: crayon Re: "At which point the US companies opens a protectionism case in the ICC ..."

      "How does commercial disputes warrant a hearing in the International Criminal Court?...." Apologies, I forgot that some readers would be unfamiliar with international trade. In this case, ICC refers to the International Chamber of Commerce (http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Chamber_of_Commerce).

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