Security

Apple: We’ve never heard of the FBI’s and NSA’s PRISM surveillance program

apple storeApple said in a statement today that it has never heard of PRISM, the FBI’s and NSA’s now-public alleged homeland surveillance project.

In case you haven’t either, the NSA and FBI allegedly collect, aggregate, and analyze audio, video, photographs, e-mail, documents, and connection logs for people using Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, Skype, YouTube, and Apple as part of a surveillance program named PRISM as well as metadata like device and location information via a sister service, BLARNEY.

At least, according to a Washington Post story. But Apple denies that it is part of the program.

In a statement, the company said:

“We do not provide any government agency with direct access to our servers and any government agency requesting customer data must get a court order.”

That’s good news for consumers, and good news for Apple customers. But there could be a caveat to that denial.

As Jolie O’Dell discovered when talking to Google representatives about PRISM, it’s possible that there is a gag order from the U.S government that prevents Google — or any other company — from talking about certain information … like the existence of a secret digital backdoor or the fact that anyone is aware of or participating in such a program.

As VentureBeat learns more, we’ll update this story.