Angry Birds And The NSA

Angry Birds And The NSA

The National Security Agency and British Government Communications Headquarters have been working together since 2007 to plant surveillance into mobile phone users’ applications, allowing them to store location information, alongside a slew of other private information users put into applications.  NSA-AngryBirds

Popular app Angry Birds was targeted, alongside more common information hotspots like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. The NSA was able to find out political alignment and sexual orientation, amongst other personal details on app users.

Google Maps was a prime target for the British organisation helping the NSA, being able to track users location to a few yards. The spy agencies are able to download all users data and store it onto their databases, where new information would crop up and show location, age, sex, marital status and even household income.

Using the term “leaky-apps”, the NSA and other spy agencies were capable of exploiting weaknesses on the different mobile platforms, allowing them to check in on apps without strong security. Once the app had been compromised, the spy agencies relentlessly downloaded and monitored users information.

In the leaked reports, provided by Edward Snowden, the agency does detail some success thanks to the mobile surveillance. Teams were able to capture several members of a drug cartel hit squad in Mexico and arrest them for the murder of an American Consulate in Mexico.

This one helpful act and a few others don’t really make up for the immense amount of data procured on every app user. President Obama has forced restrictions on NSA spying activity, but for mobile apps like this there is currently on restrictions and shows even more hidden details we still do not know about the NSA.

Mobile phones are more of a problem, on computers users normally do not reveal location and are not mobile, but phones provide a bit of both for spy agencies. While the location tracking may be positive for hunting criminals, both spy agencies cannot consider the vast amount of data collection worth the small rewards in Mexico.

By Walter Bailey

(Image Source: Shutterstock)


Walter has been a technology freelance writer for several years. His focus is on Cloud Computing and Big Data.

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.


At CloudTweaks, we're plugged into the cloud, the internet of things and all that the web has to offer. From wearable technology, to mobile computing, cloud computing and big data, CloudTweaks is your source for updates and news on the most innovative technology.


Top Viral Impact

Cloud Infographic: Most Used Cloud Apps

Cloud Infographic: Most Used Cloud Apps

Cloud app and analytics company, Netskope released its quarterly Cloud Report. The new report reveals that enterprise employees are using an average of 397 different cloud apps (most of which are unsanctioned), when IT estimated they have 40-50 — that’s a tenfold underestimation. Below is an infographic provided courtesy of the group at Netskope which goes into further detail.…

Cloud Infographic – Cyber Security And The New Frontier

Cloud Infographic – Cyber Security And The New Frontier

Cyber Security: The New Frontier The security environment of the 21st century is constantly evolving, and it’s difficult to predict where the next threats and dangers will come from. But one thing is clear: the ever-expanding frontier of digital space will continue to present firms and governments with security challenges. From politically-motivated Denial-of-Service attacks to…

Cloud Infographic – Cloud Fast Facts

Cloud Infographic – Cloud Fast Facts

Cloud Infographic – Cloud Fast Facts It’s no secret that Cloud Computing is more than just a buzz term as that ship has sailed off a long time ago. More and more companies are adopting the uses and benefits of cloud computing while aggressively factoring cloud services spending into their budget. Included is an excellent…

Using Big Data To Make Cities Smarter

Using Big Data To Make Cities Smarter

Using Big Data To Make Cities Smarter The city of the future is impeccably documented. Sensors are used to measure air quality, traffic patterns, and crowd movement. Emerging neighborhoods are quickly recognized, public safety threats are found via social networks, and emergencies are dealt with quicklier. Crowdsourcing reduces commuting times, provides people with better transportation…

Cloud Infographic – The Power Of Cloud Disaster Recovery

Cloud Infographic – The Power Of Cloud Disaster Recovery

Cloud Infographic – The Power Of Cloud Disaster Recovery Preventing a Cloud Disaster is one thing. Recovering from a disaster is a whole other area of concern. Today’s infographic provided by CloudVelox outlines some best practices and safeguards in order to help your business make more informed decisions. About Latest Posts WalterWalter has been a…

Featured Sponsors

2015 Advertising Opportunities - Find Out More!

Cloud Logo Sponsors

hp Logo CityCloud-PoweredByOpenstack-Blue square_logo_100x100-01
cisco_logo_100x100 vmware citrix100

Established in 2009, CloudTweaks is recognized as one of the leading influencers in cloud computing, big data and internet of things (IoT) information. Our goal is to continue to build our growing information portal, by providing the best in-depth articles, interviews, event listings, whitepapers, infographics and much more.


CloudTweaks Media
Phone: 1 (212) 763-0021

Join Our Newsletter