On 11 December 2013, the Swedish state TV channel SVT broadcast a 50-minute documentary The Snowden Documents and Sweden.
The film reveals many new details about the activities of Sweden’s Forsvarets Radioanstalt (FRA) and the agency’s close working relationship with the NSA and GCHQ. The revelations detailed by SVT journalists this week have been predominantly based on documents dating from April 2013 – some of the most recent so far released.
Notwithstanding Sweden’s historic political neutrality, close cooperation between the NSA and FRA dates back to the UKUSA agreement of 1954. This relationship was reaffirmed on a bilateral basis in 2004 and, since 2011, has involved the NSA having full access to FRA cable collection data. Notes from the SWEDUSA Strategic Planning Conference in April this year show that Sweden is a partner in the Quantam operations that aim to compromise machines by installing malware. The FRA has also been granted access to the NSA’s XKeyScore tool, which enables searches of communications activity worldwide.
In just over six months since the Guardian published the Verizon FISA Court Order stories based on the Snowden revelations have appeared in 14 countries worldwide – a number that continues to grow, week by week.