Numerous tech companies have been exposed by National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden as working hand-in-hand with the NSA to spy on the emails and phone calls of millions of Americans.
Tech giants such as Yahoo, Verizon, AT&T, Google, Facebook and Microsoft betrayed their customers' privacy, but one Internet Service Provider (IPS) has refused to go along with the warrantless wiretapping.
The Utah-based internet company XMission has decided not to comply with the U.S. government's subpoena requests because they did not provide “probable cause," which the U.S. Supreme Court ruled for in 1925.
“When I started XMission in 1993, I was mainly trying to get a stable Internet connection at home,” XMission founder Pete Ashdown to RT.com.
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“I honestly had no idea the Internet would become as ubiquitous and essential as it is today. I thought my server would live in a closet and I’d collect a tidy check each month, and that would be the end of it."
Concerned about the lack of representation for web users, Ashdown ran for Senate in 2006 and 2012 against long-time Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT), but found himself opposed by PAC money and even the Democratic Party.
“I would need overwhelming outside financial support to convince me to run for Congress again. I ran against PAC money and for a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizen’s United in 2012, and interests in the Democratic Party campaigned against me for that reason. With a number of disappointments from the Obama administration on civil liberties, I find the modern Democratic Party quite distant from my ideals,” said Ashdown.
While XMission has been praised by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and others, it currently only offers services within Utah.
“To hear some of the rhetoric about [Edward] Snowden being a traitor angers me,” stated Ashdown. “Snowden isn’t the one who committed the crime. He reported the constitutional crimes of the people who are running the agencies monitoring Americans. “
“If the government really wants to keep secret information secret, they should follow the law and the Constitution in their actions, not only here, but abroad. Don’t get me started on Guantanamo.”