Members of Stanford Law School’s Center for Internet and Society has published some blogs recently (Nov 13 & Dec 12, 2013) regarding phone metadata and connectedness of individuals via phone calls based upon NSA standards for searching/parsing data about phone calls (from declassified NSA documents).
The blogs do not assert that the NSA bypassed legal requirements of the system nor that the NSA misused the data collected.
The study details what seems to be a surprising degree of phone numbers that fall within searches by the NSA under correctly-applied strictures approved by FISA court.
In the test conducted “over 90% of participants were related in a single graph component.”
Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon has nothing on this game.