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German spy agency reportedly used US surveillance info

Germany’s foreign intelligence agency BND is reported to have had knowledge about US surveillance programmes for years, making use of the information gathered through the programme.

German newspaper Bild reported that the BND used German information collected by US secret programmes in cases of the country’s citizens kidnapped abroad.

Citing US government sources, the newspaper reported that BND had asked National Security Agency (NSA) about the email and telephone records of German citizens kidnapped in Yemen or Afghanistan.

Reuters reported that the BND was not immediately available to comment on the report.

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Last month, it was revealed that BND is planning to invest €100m to expand its internet surveillance programme.

Recently, German Chancellor Angela Merkel called for strict data protection rules and transparency from Internet firms including Google and Facebook all through the European Union, amidst reports of US online snooping. Merkel had earlier said that she came to know of the programme from the media.

During early June 2013, US agencies including NSA and the FBI have allegedly tapped directly into the servers of nine major US internet firms to collect the users’ data under Prism programme.

Earlier this month, the European Parliament said it will conduct an in-depth inquiry into the US surveillance programmes.


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CBR Staff Writer

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