NSA

The National Security Agency/Central Security Service (NSA/CSS) is a cryptologic intelligence agency of the United States government, administered as part of the United States Department of Defense. Created on November 4, 1952 by President Harry S. Truman, it is responsible for the collection and analysis of foreign communications and foreign signals intelligence, which involves cryptanalysis. It is also responsible for protecting U.S. government communications and information systems from similar agencies elsewhere, which involves cryptography. As of 2008, NSA has been directed to help monitor U.S. federal agency computer networks to protect them against attacks. NSA is directed by a lieutenant general or vice admiral. NSA is a key component of the U.S. Intelligence Community, which is headed by the Director of National Intelligence. The Central Security Service is a co-located agency created to coordinate intelligence activities and co-operation between NSA and U.S. military cryptanalysis agencies. NSA’s work is limited to communications intelligence; it does not perform field or human intelligence activities. By law, NSA’s intelligence gathering is limited to foreign communications, although there have been numerous reports that the agency does not always abide by these laws.

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