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Germany tapped Frankfurt internet exchange for the NSA

This summer, reporting based on documents disclosed by Edward Snowden gave an indication of the extent of German cooperation with NSA surveillance. In particular, Der Spiegel’s reporting drew attention to the involvement of Germany’s BND in the NSA’s corporate partnerships and the agencies’ jointly staffed projects based at Bad Aibling in Bavaria.

Further investigation by Süddeutsche Zeitung in June shed light on what one of those joint projects involved: the tapping of the DE-CIX internet exchange in Frankfurt, the largest in Europe.

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US Sites with NSA Personnel in Germany

This undated document lists the locations of US-operated signals intelligence stations in Germany (some have been redacted): see the Der Spiegel article The NSA in Germany: Snowden’s Documents Available for Download, 18 June 2014.

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NSA Intelligence Relationship with Germany – Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND)

This internal NSA briefing dated 17 January 2013 describes the current state of the US-German intelligence relationship and mentions that “The BND has been working to influence the German Government to relax interpretation of the privacy laws over the long term to provide greater opportunity for intelligence sharing”: see the Der Spiegel article New NSA Revelations: Inside Snowden’s Germany File, 18 June 2014.

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NSA’s Counterterrorism (CT) Relationship with the German Foreign Intelligence Service (BND) and the German Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV)

This background document, prepared by NSA officials in advance of a conversation with representatives of Germany’s domestic (BfV) and foreign (BND) intelligence services, outlines the continuing cooperation between the three agencies in the field of counterterrorism. Extracts from this document were published by Der Spiegel in July 2013: see the Der Spiegel article New NSA Revelations: Inside Snowden’s Germany File, 18 June 2014.

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