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50 top US cyber security experts write open letter calling for end to NSA ‘snoop-ops’

Washington, Jan. 25 (ANI): Experts in the fields of computer science, security and cryptography have reportedly published an open letter calling for an end to the National Security Agency’s alleged mass surveillance programmes.

The letter states, ‘every country must give intelligence and law-enforcement authorities the means to pursue terrorists and criminals, but we can do so without fundamentally undermining the security that enables commerce, entertainment, personal communication, and other aspects of 21st-century life.’

According to Cnet, more than 50 big names, including former chief technologists for the Federal Trade Commission, Edward Felten, Bellovin, director of the International Association for Cryptologic Research, Shai Halevi and researchers from MIT, Georgia Tech, Carnegie-Mellon, Princeton, Yale, Harvard, and a raft of other respected universities have signed the letter.

The alleged programmes were exposed by a former contractor of the agency, Edward Snowden, who has been charged with espionage by the US for the revelations that brought forth the extent of indiscriminate government surveillance on innocent citizens.

The report said that the NSA bypassed common web encryption methods for carrying out its surveillance activities, including hacking into the servers of private companies to steal encryption keys.

In their letter, the security experts have pointed out the alleged snoop-ops have not only compromised privacy of citizens but it also poses a threat to the US technology sector.

The researchers have urged the US government to subject all mass-surveillance activities to public scrutiny and to resist the deployment of mass-surveillance programs in advance of sound technical and social controls, the report added. (ANI)