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Commentary, sarcasm and snide remarks from a Florida resident of over thirty years. Being a glutton for punishment is a requirement for residency here. Who am I? I've been called a moonbat by Michelle Malkin, a Right Wing Nut by Daily Kos, and middle of the road by Florida blog State of Sunshine. Tell me what you think.

Friday, December 30, 2005

Pass me the cookies

AP is reporting that the NSA places webtracking cookies on the computers of people who visit the agency's website.

The National Security Agency's Internet site has been placing files on visitors' computers that can track their Web surfing activity despite strict federal rules banning most files of that type.

The files, known as cookies, disappeared after a privacy activist complained and The Associated Press made inquiries this week. Agency officials acknowledged yesterday that they had made a mistake.

Nonetheless, the issue raised questions about privacy at the agency, which is on the defensive over reports of an eavesdropping program.

"Considering the surveillance power the N.S.A. has, cookies are not exactly a major concern," said Ari Schwartz, associate director at the Center for Democracy and Technology, a privacy advocacy group in Washington. "But it does show a general lack of understanding about privacy rules when they are not even following the government's very basic rules for Web privacy."

Until Tuesday, the N.S.A. site created two cookie files that do not expire until 2035.

As Federal law stands, the NSA shouldn't be doing this. A spokesman said it was due to a recent software upgrade.

But why should the agency get defensive? Why should the MSM be giving this story coverage as yet another invasion of people's privacy? I'm no computer expert, but I know cookies being put on one's computer by commercial websites is just part of what a web surfer puts up with when using the internet.

As Captain Ed and Don Surber point out, its funny the MSM is covering this story. For their own websites, like, etc put cookies on people's computers too. Isn't the MSM invading people's privacy too? Well who says the MSM applies the same rules to itself that it applies to others right?

Steven Taylor at Poliblog takes a slightly different stance. Saying cookies aren't a big deal but in the context of the NSA and data mining this wasn't very comforting. Wizbang notes the DNC website leaves cookies too. Those scoundrels!

Just let me have my glass of milk.

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