Real news from the privacy world

The NSA Sued by The EFF

The National Security Agency (NSA) is being sued by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) over government not exposing security flaws that have been revealed by the intelligence community.

In the heat of the Heartbleed fiasco and after reports being posted about NSA both knowing and exploiting the vulnerability for years, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) claimed not having any information about the bug before it being exposed. The EFF quoted in its lawsuit that the ODNI declared that a ‘Vulnerabilities Equities Process’ policy is used to determine when to reveal security flaws that hey know about.

During the disputes in April, the White House posted in its blog an explanation of the process the administration utilizes to reveal cyber vulnerabilities, however they explained it very vaguely and with flaws.

The EFF with its suit wants to know how the Vulnerabilities Equity Process policy was developed and how it works in practice. Seizing the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) the foundation asked for records concerning the development, implementation and usage of the Vulnerabilities Equity Process policy.

The government failed to provide the specified material on the standard 21 day time period given for such purposes. Therefor, the EFF exercised a more aggressive legal actions.

It is essential for us to know how the government acts with security flaws in their knowledge, particularly when it feels forced to reveal them, provided that these vulnerabilities can be powerful weapons.

In the case when the NSA discovers a flaw and does not expose the bug to the software make, or even to the community, every user of the affected code can be exploited by others who will uncover the issue.

The White house states that it measures the risks when the government keeps such data from exposing, though the lack of transparency on how it achieves such decisions that could compromise our all security and privacy is not acceptable.

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