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What Facebook Founder Did After Learning the Gov't Was Using His Site to Track People


"We imagine we're protecting you against criminals, not our own government ... "

(Source: Shutterstock)

When most of us are unhappy about government policies — say, for instance, National Security Agency information-gathering techniques — the most we can (legally) do is educate ourselves, maybe complain a little, and wait for the next election cycle.

But apparently Mark Zuckerberg can do a little more. He called the president directly.

during a town hall meeting at Facebook headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif., Wednesday, April 20, 2011. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez) Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg reached out to President Barack Obama Thursday night to express his concerns over alleged government spying tactics that would impact Facebook's public image. The two met in person during a town hall meeting at Facebook headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif., April 20, 2011. (AP/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

The White House confirmed that Zuckerberg and Obama spoke Thursday night, discussing “recent reports in the press about alleged activities by the U.S. intelligence community,” according to Wired.

"I've called President Obama to express my frustration over the damage the government is creating for all of our future, Zuckerberg wrote in a post on Facebook. "Unfortunately, it seems like it will take a very long time for true full reform."

Zuckerberg's frustrations likely reached a tipping point when it was recently reported that the National Security Agency was masquerading as a Facebook server in order to infect targeted computers.

"I've been so confused and frustrated by the repeated reports of the behavior of the U.S. government. When our engineers work tirelessly to improve security, we imagine we're protecting you against criminals, not our own government," Zuckerberg said.

NSA1-620x433 The NSA has flatly denied the alleged tactics, and released another statement on Thursday rebuffing claims of Internet impersonation. (Photo credit: Shutterstock)

"The U.S. government should be the champion for the Internet, not a threat. They need to be much more transparent about what they're doing, or otherwise people will believe the worst."

The NSA released a statement Thursday rebuffing the reports of alleged impersonation tactics, saying claims that the NSA infected million of computers around the world with malware and that the NSA mirrored U.S. social media sites for an information advantage are inaccurate, according to Reuters.

(H/T: Wired)

Follow Elizabeth Kreft (@elizabethakreft) on Twitter

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