The Guardian: NSA Collecting Phone Records of Millions of Verizon Customers Daily
The Guardian obtained a copy of a court order issued in April requiring Verizon to give the National Security Agency (NSA) information on all telephone calls in its systems, showing that communication records of millions of US citizens are being collected "indiscriminately and in bulk." Information handed over under the order's terms include: the numbers of both parties on the call, location data, call duration, unique identifiers and the time.
GAP National Security & Human Rights Director Jesselyn Radack points out that this is exactly what her clients, NSA whistleblowers Thomas Drake and Bill Binney (referenced in The Guardian), have been warning the American people about for years. Both had reported to outlets in 2011 and 2012 about the high volume of domestic eavesdropping being done by NSA, including mention of the agency's access to AT&T and Verizon records.
More coverage of the story by Salon suggests these revelations bear out Drake's earlier description of the Obama administration's aggressive surveillance "to a chilling degree."
Key Quote: These recent events reflect how profoundly the NSA's mission has transformed from an agency exclusively devoted to foreign intelligence gathering, into one that focuses increasingly on domestic communications. A 30-year employee of the NSA, William Binney, resigned from the agency shortly after 9/11 in protest at the agency's focus on domestic activities.
BuzzFeed: SEC Chair's New Chief Counsel Entangled in Whistleblower Case Before SEC
According to this article, the new chief counsel of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Robert E. Rice, served as head of governance, litigation and regulation at Deutsche Bank during the time frame covered by GAP client Eric Ben-Artzi's allegations of wrongdoing by the bank. Ben-Artzi reported his complaints to the SEC through its Whistleblower Program. Rice is the third Deutsche Bank executive since 2001 to attain a position at the SEC.
Key Quote: Last year, Ben-Artzi, a former risk manager at Deutsche Bank, alleged financial and accounting improprieties at Deutsche Bank.” In a statement jointly released by the law firm representing him and the Government Accountability Project, Ben-Artzi alleged that Deutsche Bank failed to properly value credit derivatives on its books between 2007 and 2010 and that this alleged misreporting allowed the bank to hit its earning estimates.
Politico: Shielding the Whistleblowers
This opinion piece emphasizes the importance of stronger protections for individuals blowing the whistle on sexual assault in the military, which are included in the recently introduced Military Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2013. GAP praised the proposed legislation, which protects service members who report sexual abuse up the chain of command or to an Inspector General.
The Drum: Zynga Whistleblower Takes to Reddit Following Mass Sacking to Reveal its "Terrible Business Strategy"
A former employee at games developer Zynga answered questions about the company on Reddit after he was laid off with 520 other colleagues. He criticized Zynga's business strategy, referencing micro-management that hinders game production and major decisions made as "quick reactions to sudden changes in the market."
Winston-Salem Journal: Labor Department to Pay $820,000 to Whistleblower
The U.S. Labor Department will pay $820,000 to a former OSHA official who was fired after publicly criticizing the agency for allowing companies to underreport workplace injuries.
Sarah Damian is New Media Associate for the Government Accountability Project, the nation's leading whistleblower protection and advocacy organization.