U.S. Courts Authorized the NSA to Spy on 193 Different Countries

Illustration for article titled U.S. Courts Authorized the NSA to Spy on 193 Different Countries

We know that little is off-limits to the prying eyes of the NSA. But what is surprising is that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court gave it free reign to spy on virtually whoever it wished back in 2010.


A report from the Washington Post reveals that the FISA court certified a list of 193 countries deemed to be of "valid interest" to the U.S. along with a raft of international organizations, too. That certification gave the NSA permission to to gather intelligence about all of the countries on the list, as well as entities as diverse as the World Bank, the European Union and the International Atomic Energy Agency.


It's not clear whether the NSA has actively been targeting all the countries or organizations identified in the certification. But the documents do indicate that the NSA has been granted far more wide-ranging legal approval to spy than we were aware of in the past.

The U.S. is part of a no-spying arrangement with four countries—Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand—but clearly others aren't so lucky. From Belize to Bhutan, Ireland to Iraq, this list shows that Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court sees, and has since 2010, any other country as fair game for the NSA. [Washington Post]

Image by AP.

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