William Binney

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William Edward Binney (born September 1 1943) is a former highly placed intelligence official with the United States National Security Agency (NSA) turned whistleblower who resigned on October 31, 2001, after more than 30 years with the agency.


  • In the early summer, the Russians started to train or exercise along the border with Czechoslovakia. I started looking at the communications they were using to move around and that's when I started to pick up some very small number of unique things that was different from a normal training programme. So I started to capture that, and I said: it's obvious that they're going to invade. It was only two days later that they actually invaded
    • A Good American, 2015 documentary
  • This approach costs lives, and has cost lives in Britain because it inundates analysts with too much data. It is 99% useless. Who wants to know everyone who has ever [been] at Google or the BBC? We have known for decades that that swamps analysts,
  • Sixteen months before the attacks on America, our organisation [Signit Automation Research Center – Sarc] was running a new method of finding terrorist networks that worked on focusing on ‘smart collection’. Their plan was rejected in favour of a much more expensive plan to collect all communications from everyone.
  • The US large-scale surveillance plan failed. It had to be abandoned in 2005. Checks afterwards showed that communications from the terrorists had been collected, but not looked at in time.
  • "I found out later that, NSA had approached the telecommunications companies in February of 2001, this is 8 months before 9/11 asking for all the customer data, that is the billing data on phone calls made from US citizens to other US citizens. In fact, the entire customer set. So, and that's fundamentally what they did after 9/11, here they were asking 8 months before. And what that meant to me was that this was the design from the beginning that management had made the plans to spy on the United States and people in the United States even before 9/11. Ok, then, when 9/11 occurred, that was the pure excuse for them to go in and say, 'now, telecoms, we really need the data now, to be able to do this to be, to protect the United States from terrorism.' and that was simply false to begin with. We had no problem at all identifying these people from the beginning."
  • (referring to phone numbers stored in a database of phone and email records) Since '1' identifies anyone in the regional zone 1 of the world, that's the US, Canada and some of the islands - it's right there in the front of your white pages book ... all they have to do is use that as a base of knowledge to go in to their entire database and count all of the phone numbers there that had a one in them, right-and then the ones are in the United States and then they'd have a count of how many Americans are in the database and how often each one's there. And yet they claim they can't do that, which is false. You can do the same thing with email, with service providers, IPs and things like that.

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