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Movement To Turn Off Water To NSA Megafacility In Utah Continues

National Security Agency.svg

The political fallout from the Snowden disclosures has so far been largely ineffectual. Though awareness has been raised, little in the way of legislation or executive action has been taken – the NSA is still conducting massive surveillance on the American people whose electronic communication are being swept up in an undiscriminating dragnet. Privacy has not been restored as the NSA’s general warrant program goes strong.

But one group of activists have come up with a novel approach to combating unconstitutional government surveillance and are sticking with it. OffNow.org has a plan to shut down the NSA by focusing not on DC, but in the local areas the NSA relies on to run its colossus.

Off Now wants to deny the NSA power, literally. The group is focused on local campaigns to cut off water and electricity to NSA facilities as well as ending partnerships with universities and prohibiting state agencies from sharing data with the spy agency. A central focus has been cutting off water to the NSA megafacility in Bluffdale, Utah. Off Now recently announced a bill to turn off water to the facility cleared a key legislative hurdle.

On Jan. 26, the Utah Office of the Legislative Fiscal Analyst released a fiscal note finding no financial impact if the legislature passes a bill that would deny critical resources – like water – to the massive NSA data center in Bluffdale.

House Bill 150 (HB150), introduced by Rep. Marc Roberts, would require that the water being supplied to the NSA’s data center in Bluffdale be shut off as soon as the city’s $3 million bond is paid off. The analyst determined that passage of the bill would not likely impact state revenues, nor would it require any state expenditure. The analyst also found passage of HB150 would not result in direct measurable costs to local governments.

The NSA’s facility in Utah requires millions of gallons of local water to cool its servers in order to operate. If access to that water is cutoff the facility will have to shut down and relocate.

How integral the facility in Bluffdale is to the overall domestic surveillance program is unknown but Off Now plans to target NSA facilities across the country. If enough go offline it might be considerably more difficult for the NSA to conduct such wide-ranging domestic surveillance. Perhaps technical solutions are all that is left.

CommunityThe Bullpen

Movement To Turn Off Water To NSA Megafacility In Utah Continues

National Security Agency.svg

The political fallout from the Snowden disclosures has so far been largely ineffectual. Though awareness has been raised, little in the way of legislation or executive action has been taken – the NSA is still conducting massive surveillance on the American people whose electronic communication are being swept up in an undiscriminating dragnet. Privacy has not been restored as the NSA’s general warrant program goes strong.

But one group of activists have come up with a novel approach to combating unconstitutional government surveillance and are sticking with it. OffNow.org has a plan to shut down the NSA by focusing not on DC, but in the local areas the NSA relies on to run its colossus.

Off Now wants to deny the NSA power, literally. The group is focused on local campaigns to cut off water and electricity to NSA facilities as well as ending partnerships with universities and prohibiting state agencies from sharing data with the spy agency. A central focus has been cutting off water to the NSA megafacility in Bluffdale, Utah. Off Now recently announced a bill to turn off water to the facility cleared a key legislative hurdle.

On Jan. 26, the Utah Office of the Legislative Fiscal Analyst released a fiscal note finding no financial impact if the legislature passes a bill that would deny critical resources – like water – to the massive NSA data center in Bluffdale.

House Bill 150 (HB150), introduced by Rep. Marc Roberts, would require that the water being supplied to the NSA’s data center in Bluffdale be shut off as soon as the city’s $3 million bond is paid off. The analyst determined that passage of the bill would not likely impact state revenues, nor would it require any state expenditure.  The analyst also found passage of HB150 would not result in direct measurable costs to local governments.

The NSA’s facility in Utah requires millions of gallons of local water to cool its servers in order to operate. If access to that water is cutoff the facility will have to shut down and relocate.

How integral the facility in Bluffdale is to the overall domestic surveillance program is unknown but Off Now plans to target NSA facilities across the country. If enough go offline it might be considerably more difficult for the NSA to conduct such wide-ranging domestic surveillance. Perhaps technical solutions are all that is left.

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Dan Wright

Dan Wright

Daniel Wright is a longtime blogger and currently writes for Shadowproof. He lives in New Jersey, by choice.