We understand that there have been a number of questions discussed regarding the recent disclosure of the NSA’s PRISM program. A number of our customers have expressed concern about whether Private Internet Access is or has ever participated in the program.
First, let us make it clear that our company, nor anyone in our company has ever worked with the NSA, CIA, FBI, or other intelligence agency on any government surveillance or information collection project. In fact, the members of our company are strongly passionate about protecting the civil liberties of individuals. It is a foregone conclusion that if our company ever received an invite or request to participate in PRISM or any other government surveillance program, that we would immediately challenge the request. Our Company strongly supports and donates to legal organizations that value internet freedom and privacy such as the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Electronic Freedom Foundation (EFF), and Fight For the Future (FFTF). We would certainly employ the resources of these legal defense organizations were we asked to participate in one or more of the aforementioned programs. It is our understanding that intelligence agencies have backed down when challenged in federal court regarding these types of matters. Finally, we have already come to the conclusion that were we forced to participate in a state-sponsored surveillance and/or intelligence gathering program which we ideologically and philosophically oppose, we would rather shut down than betray the privacy of our customers.
With all that said, it is also our understanding that the NSA has larger issues to be concerned with than a VPN company. First, our company is unlikely to be targeted because of its size compared to the organizations that are known to participate. We only have a fraction of the subscriber base of some of the large ISPs that have been associated with the PRISM program. We believe the NSA would seek additional ISP participation before moving on to other targets such as smaller internet companies. Second, attempting to recruit a privacy based company to abandon its core values and surveil its subscriber base would be so scandalous an act that we believe it would be unrealistic for any major government to seek that type of relationship. Finally, our organization has a contingency plan in place in the event the atmopshere toward internet privacy in the United States becomes less hospitable.
The philosophy guiding our company’s values are the same principles that guided our Founding Fathers when they drafted the U.S. Constitution to respect the fundamental right to privacy. Technology is a two-edged sword because while it provides us freedoms that we never had access to, it can also be used as an information gathering tool that would make even the East German Stasi envious. The ongoing assault on our civil liberties has given rise to a demand for services protecting internet privacy such as ours. We strongly believe that the right to privacy enshrined in the Fourth Amendment (and others) of the U.S. Constitution is clear when it states that, “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized.” It is our opinion that privacy will always be a fundamental human right and that the timeless words of Benjamin Franklin still hold true today. “Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.” Thus, we will always protect individuals against the tyrannical forces trying to infringe upon our right to privacy, and we will always stand on the side of respecting privacy.
We hope this helps you understand where Private Internet Access stands when it comes to these kind of matters.