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Uk To Brit Hacks: Shut Up
Defence Ministry Warns Against Leaks on Joint US-Brit Spying
The Ministry of Defence
The Ministry of Defence
The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is the United Kingdom government department responsible for implementing the defence policy set by the UK's government, and is the headquarters of the British Armed Forces. | Photo: Wally Wiglet
ALSO | England | United Kingdom
A British Defense Ministry press advisory committee, reacting to a flurry of revelations in the American press about massive warrantless US government electronic surveillance programs, quietly warned UK organizations Friday not to publish British national security information.

Defiance of the advisory could make British journalists vulnerable to prosecution under the Official Secrets Act.

The June 7 "DA-Notice," or Defence Advisory Notice, which was itself confidential, accepted that the U.S. National Security Agency was sharing information gleaned from the surveillance programs with its British counterparts, and said UK intelligence organizations were worried about revelations of their own roles in the programs.

"There have been a number of articles†recently in connection with some of the†ways in which the UK†Intelligence Services obtain information from foreign sources," said the notice issued by the Defence Advisory Committee, a joint body with media organizations.

"Although none of these recent†articles has contravened any of the guidelines contained within the†Defence Advisory Notice System, the†intelligence services are concerned that further developments of†this same theme may begin to jeopardize both national security and possibly UK personnel," it said.

The notice itself was marked "Private and Confidential: Not for publication, broadcast or use on social media."

It warned British media not to publish information on "specific covert operations, sources and methods of the security services, SIS and GCHQ [the NSA's British counterpart], Defence Intelligence Units, Special Forces and those involved with them, the application of those methods, including the interception of communications and their targets; the same applies to those engaged on counter-terrorist operations."

British news organizations are concerned about the tenor of the advance warning.

"They're sending out a notice saying nothing'

Warning follows exposť of UK cooperation in massive warrantless US government electronic spying
s been published that damages national security but we're concerned the press might (and on the back of developments in the US, no less)," said a media source.

The worry is that British authorities may be preparing to pursue reporters through the courts if they publish details on UK participation in the massive US electronic surveillance programs, code-named "PRISM" and "BLARNEY," according to a report in The Washington Post.

The NSA collects "directly from the servers of these U.S. Service Providers: Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, Skype, YouTube, Apple," the Post reported.

According to the Guardian newspaper, the NSA has been sharing intelligence from the same internet companies with GCHQ.

President Obama on Friday defended the spying programs, which access every Americans' email and Internet searches, saying "a whole bunch of safeguards [are] involved" to protect privacy.

The Ministry of Defence
The Ministry of Defence
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Marine Gen. Peter Pace, left, and his British counterpart, Air Chief Marshal Sir Jock Stirrup pose for a photo prior to a meeting at the British Ministry of Defense in London, England, Oct. 26, 2006. | Photo: Staff Sgt. D. Myles Cullen

Your Comments:
The US gov has been running an eavesdropping operation on Americans from British soil for decades. Why is this all such a "scandal?"
            -- Nancy Marcus, Thursday, August 01, 2013 12:39 pm
Call for an official investigation into this creepy secret program: www.bit.ly/11yD4vJ
            -- Montgummery Burns, Tuesday, July 09, 2013 1:26 pm
It is up to every newspaper worth their salt to defy this order. What ever happened to free press?
            -- JohnDoe, Thursday, July 04, 2013 5:58 am
Since the US gov has been running an eavesdropping operation on Americans from British soil for decades they are trying to cover there ass. Echelon is a huge operation that gathers every electronic communication illegally made in the USA.
            -- Rick Carufel, Monday, June 10, 2013 10:58 am
US Government announced today that US Congressional intelligence committees have been previously briefed of this counterterrorism domestic and international operation in the past a number of times. Also, special FISA Court has approved the US government's
            -- Dr. James Afshar, CP, Saturday, June 08, 2013 7:32 pm
Obama seems not to realise that once private communications are intercepted then privacy has been violated. There may be safeguards after that to prevent misuse or wrongful disclosure but there is no gainsaying that privacy has been violated.
            -- Andrew Smith, Saturday, June 08, 2013 12:05 pm
Who gave order? What are they hiding? The plot thickens.
            -- CJ, Saturday, June 08, 2013 6:50 am

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"Uk To Brit Hacks: Shut Up | Defence Ministry Warns Against Leaks on Joint US-Brit Spying"
Editorial ID #13003, 402 words, first released June 7, 2013, 2:00 pm
Guess who:

dmAana efySiedr (norb bceeeDmr 3, 5189) is na mciAanre atssrec nad ginres-rnitsowgre. She anbeg rhe aecerr sa a lihcd moedl hwne...

(Yes, the caption is scrambled a bit to sharpen your mind.)

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