October 9, 2013
Apparently the National Security Agency (NSA) is having electrical issues at the Bluffdale Utah NSA Spy Center (BUNSC), a.k.a. The Intelligence Community Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative Data Center. Power surges destroyed equipment costing millions of dollars in damage which has pushed the opening of the massive surveillance apparatus back from its original scheduled date.
In 10 separate instances, the BUNSC in Bluffdale was the scene of electrical surges over the last year that has cost an estimated $1.4 billion to construct.
Every power surge is costing $100,000 in computer and other equipment over the 1 million square foot facility. To run the BUNSC, the NSA will spend nearly $12 million annually in electricity costs.
The BUNSC will be able to store either yotabytes or zetabytes of information (depending on which MSM outlet is quoted) which would necessitate 10,000 racks of servers, assuming that one rack is 10 square feet.
Under this estimation, the BUNSC could actually contain exabytes of information. This is an unprecedented amount of data. However, attention on this one facility has over-shadowed the fact that the NSA has other locations of storage space in Colorado, Georgia, Hawaii and Texas – including as well Australia and Britain.
James Bamford, intelligence expert, said that the BUNSC was part of former President Bush’s “total information awareness” program. Congress put an end to this plan in 2003 when American citizens protested, citing its potential for complete invasion of their privacy.
One of Bamford’s informants told him that this “data center” would be able to break codes as a megalopolis of surveillance capabilities. “Everybody’s a target; everybody with communication is a target.”
The NSA has become quite good at cracking complex encryptions used by financial firms, “stock transactions, business deals, foreign military and diplomatic secrets, legal documents, confidential personal communications.”
Keith Alexander, director of the NSA stated that his agency “does not have the ability” to spy on Americans.
Alexander said: “The “NSA does not have the ability to do that in the United States. We’re not authorized to do that, nor do we have the equipment in the United States to collect that kind of information.”
Last July, the House of Representatives will voted not to block funding to the NSA PRISM program and other surveillance operations.
House Representative Justin Amash championed several amendments to the 2014 National Defense Authorization Act of Fiscal Year 2014 (NDAA) which would prohibit monies being funneled to the NSA for the collection of data on Americans.
Under the amendments, the NSA would be banned from collecting data on record acquisition including phone calls unless the suspect was part of an on-going investigation.
Funding for specified targeting would be prohibited in the event that the NSA targeted a “US individual . . . acquire and store the content of that person’s communications, including phone calls and emails.”
Currently the NSA is empowered by the 2001 US Patriot Act , Sec. 215 (50 U.S.C. § 1861), that states the federal government can collect data on Americans if there is a claim of national security compromise.
A reformation of the US Patriot Act of 2001 has been suggested for consideration on Capitol Hill with a demand for the federal government to define through demonstration that there is an obvious link between terrorism and the blanket spying conducted by the NSA and other agencies prior to surveillance operations being implemented.
The number of US citizens concerned about being spied on is growing. Through polling, 42% of Americans say that the NSA is making our country safer, while 47% are indifferent to the entire matter.
The Senate has approved funding for the NSA.
Russ Tice, former NSA intelligence analyst turned whistleblower has recently revealed that the BUNSC is currently operational amid claims by the NSA to the contrary.
Tice remarked that “the recent NSA scandal only scratches the surface of a massive surveillance apparatus.”