Top secret documents leaked by former contractor Edward Let-It-Snowden reveal a previously unknown NSA program code-named SANTA (Securing America’s Noel Toy Allotment). A key component of the SANTA program is the use of hidden recording and transmitting devices in Elf on the Shelf dolls. The Elf on the Shelf dolls allow the NSA to secretly monitor citizens from inside their own homes.
Via the SANTA program the NSA has been able to collect highly personal data about millions of America’s children, including but not limited to
- When they are sleeping
- When they are awake
- Whether they’ve been bad or good
Additionally, the children are asked to name each Elf on the Shelf, which serves as a subversive psychological exam. Although the details of the NSA’s criteria are not fully known, examples in the leaked documents indicate that naming an Elf on the Shelf “Bob” or “George Washington” or “Eagle” results in a rating of “nice.” Naming an Elf on the Shelf “Osama” or “Saddam” or “Death to America” will result in a household being flagged as “naughty” likely leading to a drone strike.
Since the program has become public many have criticized SANTA’s spying as a violation of civil liberties, an example of unlawful monitoring, and a gross abuse of power. Others, however, feel the scope of the SANTA program is too limited.
“The biggest weakness of SANTA is that it only monitors families who celebrate Christmas,” said one Republican lawmaker. “It turns out a lot of people don’t even celebrate Christmas. At all. Can you imagine? Those are the people we should be watching.”
The best way to avoid being monitored is to boycott the Elf on the Shelf product. If, however, you already have an Elf on the Shelf in your home you can wrap it in aluminum foil to prevent it from transmitting data to SANTA.
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