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…the “greatest in the history of oil exploration.” If stolen, Mr. Villa said, the information about the blocks could give undue advantage to some companies. “Someone would have an edge. If this information was leaked and someone else has obtained it, he would be in a privileged position at the auction. He’ll know where to invest and where not to. It’s a handy little secret,” said the former chief of Petrobras.
The new documents revealed on Sunday will certainly intensify the already existing tensions between Brazil and U.S., but it also has implications for other countries, including India. The top-secret presentation, revealed by Globo TV, explained how the NSA was intercepting data through an attack known as “Man in the Middle” and rerouting it to the NSA central. Then, the NSA presentation shows in detail how the data of a chosen target is rerouted through spy filters beginning at the very source, until they reach the NSA’s supercomputers.
Using this method, the NSA targeted “foreign government networks”, “airlines”, “energy companies” — like Petrobras — and “financial organisations.”
The NSA programs that were exposed by Greenwald also targeted French diplomats — with access to the private network of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of France — and the Swift network that connects more than 10,000 banks in 212 countries and provides communications that enable international financial transactions. All transfers of money between banks across national borders goes through Swift.
The NSA presentation also contains documents prepared by GCHQ, the British Spy agency which has been working as an NSA partner. Through its two programs, called “Flying Pig” and “Hush Puppy”, the British agency has been monitoring TLS/SSL, the private networks which carry supposedly secure information. TLS/SSL networks are also the security system used in financial transactions, such as when someone accesses their bank account through an ATM. On the maps of the top-secret presentation, India too figures prominently, with several network lines connecting Mumbai with locations in the Middle East and Chennai with South-East Asia.