The National Security Agency does not have to disclose its relationship with Google amid press reports that the two partnered up after hackers in China launched a cyber attack on the U.S. government, a federal judge in Washington ruled. In February 2010, the Electronic Privacy Information Center requested a number of communications between the NSA and Google regarding cyber security. Following an alleged Chinese hacker attack, media outlets had reported that NSA teamed up with the web giant for an investigation. The center, which calls itself a public-interest group dedicated to civil liberties issues, requested records "concerning an agreement or similar basis for collaboration" and "Google's decision to fail to routinely encrypt" Gmail messages and Google Docs. The NSA denied the Freedom of Information Act request for the documents. "While it acknowledged working 'with a broad range of commercial partners and research associates,' the Agency refused to 'confirm [ or] deny' whether it even had a relationship with Google," the court's order said. This type of answer is known as a Glomar response after the Hughes Glomar Explorer, a ship used in a classified CIA project to raise a sunken Soviet submarine from the Pacific Ocean.
McConnell didn't spell out who exactly the US had attacked with its offensive capabilities. However, RT.com reports that security experts have "all but confirmed" that the US was at least partially behind the Stuxnet worm that damaged Iran's efforts to enrich uranium, working in concert with Israel.