NSA reportedly ‘piggybacking’ on Google advertising cookies to hone in on surveillance targets

In yet another disclosure from Edward Snowden’s pile of leaked NSA documentsThe Washington Post has revealed that the US surveillance agency may be using Google’s advertising cookies to track and “pinpoint” targets for government hacking and location-tracking. According to Snowden’s leaked presentation slides, both the NSA and the British equivalent, the GCHQ, are using a Google-specific ad cookie (know as “PREF”) as a way of honing in on specific surveillance targets. While Google’s cookie doesn’t contain personal information like a name or email address, it does contain numeric codes that uniquely identify a user’s browser. That identifier reportedly helps the NSA and the GCHQ single out a specific machine and send out its software…

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