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Does Government Spying Pay Off?
UNDATED -- How good is America at identifying terrorists?
Given what we now know about the federal government gathering data on all of us, why did it lose track of the Boston bombers?
The federal government presumably has every tracking tool known to man.
Edward Snowden, currently American's most sought-after leaker, blew the lid off of federal agents' ability to peer into our lives online and on the phone.
So, how did federal agents miss clues behind the April terrorist attack in Boston? Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev were no strangers to cell phones or online social networking sites.
Vernon Herron is a senior security policy analyst.
"I can sit in my office and gather intelligence information all day, every day, 365 days a year, but, unless I get that information to the right people, who can do something with it, I mean, it's just intelligence information," Herron said. "It does not fulfill its intent unless you get it to the Boston Police Department or local FBI."
Critics of the National Security Agency's big scale, big data mining don't find value in snooping on everyone wired to the net or tied to a cell tower.
"It hasn't been proven that it works," Senator Mark Udall says. "Uniquely valuable intelligence hasn't been proven to have disrupted plots."
People we spoke to still believe in the government's ability to protect them from terrorism, despite showing widespread holes between technology and how it's used.
However, it doesn't mean the majority of Americans approves of widespread eavesdropping.
59 percent of Americans oppose the government's secret collecting of phone records, according to a recent Rasmussen survey.
Law enforcement officers say surveillance has been used to foil many terrorist plots.
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Euro weighed down by soft economic data, Ukraine
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