Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg phoned Obama to complain about NSA

Friday, 14 March 2014 - 8:17am IST | Agency: Reuters

Facebook Inc Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg blasted the U.S. government's
electronic surveillance practices on Thursday, saying he'd
personally called President Barack Obama to voice his

"When our engineers work tirelessly to improve security, we
imagine we're protecting you against criminals, not our own
government," Zuckerberg said in a post on his personal Facebook

"I've called President Obama to express my frustration over
the damage the government is creating for all of our future.
Unfortunately, it seems like it will take a very long time for
true full reform," the 29-year-old Zuckerberg continued.

The phone call and Zuckerberg's 300-word missive on Thursday
come amid a series of revelations about controversial government
surveillance practices that were leaked by former National
Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden.

"The president spoke last night with Mark Zuckerberg about
recent reports in the press about alleged activities by the U.S.
intelligence community," a White House official said.

The official declined further comment and referred to the
National Security Agency's statement released earlier on
Thursday saying recent media reports that allege the NSA has
infected million of computers around the world malware and that
the NSA is impersonating U.S. social media or other websites are

Facebook, which operates the world's No. 1 Internet social
network with 1.2 billion users, declined to comment beyond
Zuckerberg's post.

Secret documents published on news website The Intercept on
Wednesday showed that the NSA impersonated Facebook web pages in
order to gather information from targets. When those people
thought they were logging into Facebook, they were actually
communicating with the NSA. The agency then used malicious code
on the fake page to break into the targets' computers and remove
data from them.

Last year, Facebook moved to encrypt all its pages, making
such impersonation more difficult.

Previous media reports based on leaked Snowden documents
detail how the government may have tapped into communications
cables that link data centers owned by Google Inc and
Yahoo Inc, intercepting user data without the
companies' knowledge or cooperation.

"The US government should be the champion for the internet,
not a threat. They need to be much more transparent about what
they're doing, or otherwise people will believe the worst,"
Zuckerberg said in his post.

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