U.S. Internet Surveillance ‘Targeted Commercial Secrets’
Brazilian newspaper O Globo has claimed that internet surveillance programs run by the U.S. National Security Agency are going beyond military and legal concerns to target “commercial secrets”.
The paper cites documents recently leaked by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden. It claims that they show the NSA was spying on amongst other things, the oil industry in Venezuela and the energy sector in Mexico.
The O Globo article was written by Roberto Kaz, Jose Casado and Glenn Greenwald. Greenwald, an American citizen living in Rio de Janeiro who also works the Britain’s Guardian newspaper was the first to reveal Snowden’s leaked documents to the world as well as to conduct an interview with the man.
The American government has previously expressed outrage over accusations that Chinese government hackers may have targeted the commercial secrets of US companies. Ironically senior officials from the US and China are meeting in Washington on Wednesday, where they are expected to discuss hacking as part of the ‘Strategic and Economic Dialogue’.
Latin America Leads Global Outrage Over US Spying
Latin American nations appear to have been amongst the main targets of secret American surveillance programs, and have been at the forefront of global outrage since the details of these programs were leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.
According to O Globo Argentina, Ecuador, Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, Paraguay, Chile and El Salvador were all targeted by American internet spy software.
Leaders across the region have called for a tough response to revelations. Brazil’s Foreign Minister expressed ’deep concern’ on behalf of her country following a cabinet meeting convened by the President to discuss the affair on Sunday. On Tuesday, President of Argentina Cristina Fernandez told her country that “A shiver ran down my back when I learned that they are spying on all of us.” The President of Peru, usually a close ally of the U.S. has also said that his country is ”against these kinds of espionage activities.” Meanwhile Nicaragua, Venezuela and Bolivia have all offered asylum to Mr Snowden.
These latest accusation will further raise Latin American anger, which was stoked last week after a flight carrying Bolivian President Evo Morales across Europe was diverted and forced to submit to a search over suspicions that Mr Snowden may have been on board.