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Despite the furor over PRISM, the U.S. National Security Agency’s data collection program, you are far more likely to be spied upon by the authorities if you live Italy or the Netherlands than if you live in the good old, US of A, a former NSA general counsel told Congress recently.

The difference is the surveilling over there is typically done by law enforcement organizations rather than a national super-spy agency and some say oversight here is actually tighter. According to security expert Chris Wolf:

“We can have a debate over whether or not the judicial and legislative approval process is working here in America, but the fact is, it exists, and in many places in Europe you don’t have that kind of due process … You don’t have legislative oversight. In fact, the national security investigations are done completely in the dark or mostly in the dark.”

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