Monday, November 4, 2013
November 4 - U.S. National Security Agency
The U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) was established on November 4, 1952, by order of President Harry Truman. Its predecessor was the Armed Forces Security Agency (1949), which failed to centralize post-World War II intelligence functions or coordinate them with civilian agencies. Operating under the Defense Department, the NSA’s function is to manage signals intelligence, i.e., interception of communications. It monitors, collects, decodes and analyzes information for foreign intelligence and counterintelligence. It is authorized to do so via clandestine means and allegedly via use of subversive software. It conducts surveillance of specific individuals within the United States and collects and stores all phone records of all American citizens. Its 1,300 buildings are headquartered at Fort Meade, Maryland, between Baltimore and Washington. The NSA is Maryland’s largest employer and largest consumer of electric power. Its large main building is sheathed in one-way dark glass that is lined with copper shielding to trap signals and prevent espionage. NSA owns the world’s single largest group of supercomputers.