This week on Lever Time, David Sirota and producer Arjun Singh look at college protests in the age of total surveillance. They talk with Alistair Kitchen, a student journalist who’s been reporting from Columbia’s campus, and explore how corporate America has taught the intelligence community new ways to use consumer data to spy on people everywhere.

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As colleges and police departments crack down on campus protests, law enforcement are using tools borrowed from corporate America’s ballooning surveillance regime to spy on students — and anyone else they deem a threat. 

When New York City police raided Columbia University on Tuesday to remove student protesters from a building they’d occupied, Mayor Eric Adams justified the move by claiming “outside agitators” had infiltrated the group. If the claim was even true, how did authorities get that information? What sort of technologies are authorities using to monitor the protesters — and where did these spy tools come from?

To read a transcript of this episode, click here.

▶️ On Monday’s Lever Time Premium, for paid subscribers: A conversation with Byron Tau about his book, “Means of Control: How the Hidden Alliance of Tech and Government is Creating a New Surveillance State,” and the emergence of the post 9/11 surveillance state.