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Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 03/25/2010

Backchannel chatter: NSA's split personality

By Jeff Stein

Noah Shachtman, who helms the always interesting national security blog Danger Room, makes a provocative argument in the new issue of Wired that the National Security Agency should be cleaved in two.

It's “actually home to two different agencies under one roof,” Shachtman writes. “There’s the signals-intelligence directorate, the Big Brothers who, it is said, can tap into any electronic communication. And there’s the information-assurance directorate, the cybersecurity nerds who make sure our government’s computers and telecommunications systems are hacker- and eavesdropper-free.

“In other words,” Shachtman continues, “there’s a locked-down spy division and a relatively open geek division. The problem is, their goals are often in opposition. One team wants to exploit software holes; the other wants to repair them.” Follow the rest of his argument here.

By Jeff Stein  | March 25, 2010; 12:00 PM ET
Tags:  Danger Room, NSA, National Security Agency, Noah Shachtman, Wired Magazine  
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