Förderverein Informationstechnik und Gesellschaft
NSA Admits to Holding Secret Information on Princess Diana
By Vernon Loeb Washington Post Staff Writer Saturday, December 12, 1998; Page A13
The National Security Agency has disclosed that U.S. intelligence is holding 1,056 pages of classified information about the late Princess Diana, inspiring a flurry of sensational headlines this week across London's tabloids.
Diana, the official insisted, was never a "target" of the NSA's massive, worldwide electronic eavesdropping infrastructure. The NSA system sucks up millions of electronic signals from around the world every hour, but only "targeted" communications are actually analyzed and deciphered after a vast array of supercomputers sort them out on the basis of programmed search terms, such as "Saddam Hussein."
Those documents, the NSA denial said, had been classified top secret "because their disclosure could reasonably be expected to cause exceptionally grave damage to the national security."
If unclassified and released, one U.S. intelligence official explained, the damage would be caused not by the information about Diana, but because the documents would disclose "sources and methods" of U.S. intelligence gathering.
c Copyright 1998 The Washington Post Company