The nation’s top intelligence officer admitted Tuesday that the government may use information transmitted to the Internet from your washing machine, your thermostat, your television, your refrigerator or your favorite video game against you. Almost every home appliance and electronic gadget sold today is outfitted with a computer chip, constantly feeding information about their owners back to utilities, manufacturers and other data networks.

James Clapper, director of national intelligence, in his annual assessment of threats given before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Tuesday, said the government considers this information fair game against people it suspects of terrorism or other crimes. The so-called “Internet of things” is providing a bevy of personal information about Americans, many of whom are completely unaware of the dragnet they are tied into. READ MORE