Documents provided by Edward Snowden mention a special relationship between the National Security Agency and an unnamed telecommunications company. Here’s how we figured out that’s AT&T.
TODAY WE REPORTED that the National Security Agency’s ability to capture Internet traffic on United States soil has relied on its extraordinary, decadeslong partnership with a single company: the telecom giant AT&T.
While it has long been known that American telecommunications companies work closely with the spy agency, the documents we’ve published show that the relationship with AT&T has been considered unique and especially productive. One document described it as “highly collaborative” and another lauded the company’s “extreme willingness to help.”
By following breadcrumbs we found throughout the trove of documents released by Snowden, we were able to prove that a program called Fairview was the cover term for the agency’s partnership with AT&T. We also found evidence that Verizon participates in the agency’s smaller Stormbrew program.