NSA Experimented With Cell Phone Location Tracking Program

The National Security Agency experimented with a cell phone location tracking program in 2010, but eventually shelved the idea. Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, declassified the program during a senate testimony today on Capitol Hill.

“In 2010 and 2011 N.S.A. received samples in order to test the ability of its systems to handle the data format, but that data was not used for any other purpose and was never available for intelligence analysis purposes,” a draft of the report says, which was obtained early by The New York Times.

The NSA has repeatedly denied that it tracks Americans’ locations, but its secret documents reveal that GPS data is used to create a network of suspects tied to Americans.

“After years of stonewalling on whether the government has ever tracked or planned to track the location of law-abiding Americans through their cellphones, once again, the intelligence leadership has decided to leave most of the real story secret — even when the truth would not compromise national security,” Said Senator Ron Wyden.

Wyden has spearheaded a surveillance reform package that could actually pass, but will have to wait for President Obama’s NSA task force to issue its recommendations.

[Image Credit: Flickr User DeaPeaJay]