I do not want to live in a world where everything I do and say is recorded. That is not something I am willing to support or live under. —Edward Snowden

In 2013 an unknown government contractor, Edward Snowden, illegally collected tens of thousands of documents from the National Security Agency (NSA) where he was employed. On June 6, 2013, the Washington Post and The Guardian, a British publication, began a series of explosive articles based on these documents. They disclosed that the U.S. government was operating a surveillance program that monitored the communications records of both terrorists and ordinary citizens. The documents revealed that the government was monitoring telephone records and text messages under a program called Prism. In addition, the NSA had tapped into the servers of nine internet service providers and was recording emails, photographs and other activities to or from U.S. private citizens.

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