'Presidents Obama and Rousseff at the G20'

Folha, Brazil

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President Rousseff: Snowden Documents Show U.S. Economic Espionage (Epoca, Brazil)


"If the facts presented in the media are confirmed, it will be clear that the reason for the attempted violations and espionage are not about security or counter-terrorism, but are related to economic and strategic interests. ... the Brazilian government is determined to obtain clarification from the government of the United States about all violations that were ultimately carried out, and demands concrete measures be taken to definitively do away with this offensive espionage against our human rights, our sovereignty and our economic interests."


-- Brazil President Dilma Rousseff


Translated By Brandi Miller


September 11, 2013


Brazil - Epoca - Original Article (Portuguese)

President Obama greets Brazil President Dilma Rousseff at the G20 Summit in St. Petersburg, Russia, Sept. 6.


BBC NEWS VIDEO: Brazil and Mexico demand answers from Washington about claims the NSA spied on their presidents, Sept. 3, 00:02:17RealVideo

According to documents leaked by Edward Snowden, Petrobras was spied upon by the U.S. National Security Agency. In a statement, the company said that its system is "extremely capable."


In a statement on Monday, President Dilma Rousseff said that if allegations are confirmed that the U.S. utilized its intelligence apparatus to obtain information from Petrobras, it will be clear that its motives are economic and strategic.


"If the facts presented in the media are confirmed, it will be clear that the reason for the attempted violations and espionage are not about security or counter-terrorism, but are related to economic and strategic interests." The statement goes on to say that while Petrobras "without doubt" represents no threat to the security of any country, it happens to oversee one of the largest petroleum reserves in the world and is the property of the Brazilian people.


The claim that Petrobras was spied on by the National Security Agency (NSA is its English acronym) was made via a report by TV Globo's Fantástico on Sunday evening. The information was taken from documents leaked by former NSA analyst Edward Snowden, who is currently an exile in Russia.


In the statement, President Rousseff also said that the Brazilian government is determined to obtain clarification from the government of the United States about all violations that were "ultimately carried out," in addition to "demanding concrete measures be taken to definitively do away with the offensive espionage against our human rights, our sovereignty and our economic interests."


Dilma said that such attempted violations and espionage are incompatible with democratic coexistence between friendly countries. "For our part, we will take all possible measures to protect our country, its government, and its companies."


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According to the Fantástico report, an NSA PowerPoint presentation used to train new agents shows that the agency spies on private computer networks, such as the one used by Petrobras. The name of the Brazilian company appears right at the beginning of the presentation. In addition to the company, targets are listed such as Google, the French diplomatic corps., and the SWIFT interbank network, which enables global financial transactions. It is not possible to determine how long Petrobras has been spied upon from the leaked document, nor what type of data the NSA accessed.


The Brazilian company also reacted today to the case. In a statement, it said that its system is "extremely capable" and is constantly updated to protect its internal network [Intranet]. "The company consistently carries out all procedures identified and recognized as best market practices in regard to the protection of its internal network, data and information. Intranet traffic and the flow of data between the intranet and the external environment (the Worldwide Web) is permanently monitored by Petrobras," the statement says.


The company also asserts that its employees are trained in the proper use of its computer systems. "Internal information is classified and treated with technological solutions, such as levels of encryption appropriate for the potential risk to Petrobras in the event the information is leaked."

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According to O Globo, the NSA denies stealing information from foreign companies. The agency says it doesn't spy on companies to obtain economic advantage for U.S. firms. The entity said that its surveillance of companies is used to access important information about potential economic crises.


Rousseff spied upon


The charge of espionage against Petrobras comes a week after Fantástico broadcast a report showing that President Dilma Rousseff and her senior advisors were spied on by the NSA. Secret documents reveal that Dilma's telephone conversations, e-mails and communication network were intercepted by the U.S. agency.


Those revelations resulted in a diplomatic crisis between Brazil and the United States. Last week, Brazil demanded explanations from U.S. officials, and President Rousseff canceled a trip to the United States by her team, which was to prepare for her visit to the country [for a state visit] in October. The cancellation of the team's visit, however, does not mean Rousseff has given up traveling to the U.S.


In addition to this, during the G-20 Summit in St. Petersburg on Friday, President Rousseff confirmed that Brazil wants to know "all there is to know" about what the U.S. spy agency has gleaned from the country. U.S. President Barack Obama, after talking to Rousseff, said he would get to the bottom of the NSA accusations. Obama also said that he took the allegations of espionage against Brazil and Mexico - another country involved in the surveillance - seriously.


Espionage claims


In recent months, former U.S. analyst Edward Snowden, who worked for the NSA, said publicly that the American government had developed the largest program for the mass surveillance of communications in the world.



With the collaboration of American journalist Glenn Greenwald, to whom Snowden passed classified documents, Época exclusively revealed files demonstrating that the NSA spied on eight members of the U.N. Security Council during talks about imposing sanctions against Iran in 2010.


Later, Época had access to a top secret letter in which U.S. Ambassador to Brazil Thomas Shannon Jr. thanked NSA Director General Keith Alexander for the "exceptional" quality of information obtained in surveillance operations against other countries on the continent, before and after the Fifth Summit of the Americas in Trinidad and Tobago in April 2009.


In the document, Shannon celebrates how the NSA's work allowed the U.S. to gain an understanding of what representatives from other countries would do at the Summit. In an interview with Época, Minister of Communications Paulo Bernardo said that keeping data secret is part of the diplomatic game, but that espionage during negotiations could lead to fraud. "We are facing a scandal of global proportions," he said.


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Posted By Worldmeets.US Sept. 11, 2013, 4:29am