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"Stop at nothing... Betray, violate, cause enormous harm."

"I listen to Ira’s show on and off, because I think they do the best work there is in that form. But This American Life has inspired this proliferation of programs where people tell their stories, and I think it’s gotten—there’s too much of it. I find it annoying, because it’s very uneven. Now it just seems like everybody’s telling a story, and it’s beginning to sound narcissistic, and I’m thinking, Who gives a shit about your story? You’re just another person telling your story. How many do we need?" Joe Frank interviewed by Jonathan Goldstein for The Believer [more inside]
posted by Going To Maine on Nov 9, 2013 - 71 comments

Welcome to America. All of that stuff is being captured as we speak.

Are all telephone calls recorded and accessible to the US government? This week, CNN interviewed Tim Clemente, a former FBI counterterrorism agent, about whether the FBI would be able to discover the contents of past telephone calls between Tamerlan Tsarnaev and his wife. Clemente stated that the FBI had ways of accessing those calls, and that all calls are recorded. [more inside]
posted by benbenson on May 5, 2013 - 180 comments

ReCISPA

The TechNet trade association has been lobbying for CISPA, a bill the EFF describes as a “misguided cybersecurity bill that would create a gaping exception to existing privacy law while doing little to address palpable and pressing online security issues” (previously). Google's Eric Schmidt signed TechNet's letter supporting CISPA. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges on Apr 17, 2013 - 67 comments

IRS Claims Authority to Read Your E-Mail Without A Warrant

The ACLU reports that the IRS claims in an internal document that it has the authority to access citizens' online communications without a warrant. The IRS claimed in a 2009 document that "the Fourth Amendment does not protect communications held in electronic storage, such as email messages stored on a server, because internet users do not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in such communications." It still retains that position even after the 2010 case of US v Warshak which determined that citizens have a reasonable expectation of privacy in such communications. [more inside]
posted by Sleeper on Apr 11, 2013 - 50 comments

Electronic surveillance skyrockets in the US

The Justice Department, after a legal battle with the ACLU to avoid having to admit it, recently released documents showing that the federal government’s use of warrantless “pen register” and “tap and trace” surveillance has multiplied over the past decade. But the Justice Department is small potatoes. Every day, the NSA intercepts and stores 1.7 billion emails, phone calls, texts, and other electronic communications. [more inside]
posted by Sleeper on Oct 3, 2012 - 82 comments

CISPA

The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) is a controversial surveillance bill that proposes broad legal exemptions for the U.S. government and private companies to share "cyber threat intelligence" that go well beyond the FISA Amendments Act which legalized the NSA's warrantless wiretapping program. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges on Apr 23, 2012 - 79 comments

Wirele$$tap

These Are The Prices AT&T, Verizon and Sprint Charge For Cellphone Wiretaps. After a flurry of public records requests to over 200 police departments, the ACLU has obtained a trove of documents detailing police tracking of cell phone location, call logs and more, including a price list for subscriber information from every major US carrier. [more inside]
posted by indubitable on Apr 3, 2012 - 35 comments

Dear Batman, Please send me a Batman button. The only button I have says vote for Goldwater.

Dear batman,
Your television program is keen. The greatest thing is the theme song. Could you please tell me which opera your theme song is from.
Yours truly, Barbara L., Long Beach. Calif.

So begins one of the many missives written to Batman and catalogued in Bill Adler's 1966 book, Funniest Fan Letters to Batman. Featured in this week's episode of WireTap (MP3 link) where you can hear some of the letters read (starting around 15:20).
posted by goingonit on Dec 19, 2011 - 24 comments

And how much better to die in all the happy period of undisillusioned youth, to go out in a blaze of light, than to have your body worn out and old and illusions shattered.

A FOIA request for Ernest Hemingway's FBI file has revealed that J. Edgar Hoover had placed him under surveillance due to his activities in Cuba. His fear that the FBI was spying on him was previously viewed as a consequence of the mental deterioration that eventually lead to his suicide.
posted by jeffburdges on Jul 2, 2011 - 76 comments

Stasi, SSIS, ...

"I almost can't believe I'm witnessing this. We're inside the fortress of terror, our very own Mordor..." [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges on Mar 7, 2011 - 74 comments

Sed quis custodiet ipsos cutodes

Judge sides with motorcylist in videotaping incident. Previously [more inside]
posted by peeedro on Sep 28, 2010 - 37 comments

Easing Wiretaps on the Internet

“They can promise strong encryption. They just need to figure out how they can provide us plain text.” The administration plans to submit legislation to Congress in 2011 which would mandate any communications technology operating in the United States to include technical measures to comply with wiretap orders. [more inside]
posted by Vetinari on Sep 27, 2010 - 198 comments

Cops get privacy on a public street?

The ACLU of Maryland is defending Anthony Graber for violating Maryland wiretap laws because he recorded a video of a plain clothes officer drawing a gun during a traffic stop without first identifying himself as a police officer. The Maryland State Police raided Graber's parents' after learning of the video on YouTube. Another person has since been similarly charged under the same statute. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges on Jul 27, 2010 - 141 comments

Unofficial Wiretap Podcast

CBC's Wiretap has an unoffical podcast. In the latest episode, Gregor Samsa gets help from Dr. Seuss.
posted by GuyZero on Mar 19, 2008 - 16 comments

Wired-tapped

Crashing the Wiretapper's Ball Wired News snuck a reporter into the ISS World Conference, a no-press-allowed conference for companies that sell wiretapping equipment to law enforcement, ISPs, telcos, and repressive governments. Hilarity ensues. via
posted by pithy comment on Jun 1, 2006 - 21 comments

AT&T-NSA documents leaked

Wired News has obtained a copy of a file detailing AT&T's involvement with the NSA that was sealed in the EFF's class-action lawsuit against AT&T. At 2AM EST this morning they have published that file on their site for anyone to download (this is the fixed link, the one on Wired is currently broken).[via]
posted by Ryvar on May 22, 2006 - 67 comments

You say to-may-to, I say to-mah-to...

Taste's great! Less filling! So did "several former judges who served on the panel also voiced skepticism at a Senate hearing about the president's constitutional authority to order wiretapping on Americans without a court order" or did "FISA judges say Bush within law"? Just in case you doubted that different newspapers present news stories (even those with official audio coverage available!) differently...
posted by twsf on Mar 29, 2006 - 15 comments

NSA Whistleblower Alleges Illegal Spying

Watch what you say. Russell Tice, the NSA whistleblower who was the source for the NYT, has alleged that the the technology exists to track and sort through every domestic and international phone call as they are switched through centers, such as one in New York, and to search for key words or phrases that a terrorist might use. "If you picked the word 'jihad' out of a conversation," Tice said, "the technology exists that you focus in on that conversation, and you pull it out of the system for processing." What else are they listening for?
posted by bukharin on Jan 10, 2006 - 87 comments

Signaling Vulnerabilities in Wiretapping Systems

Signaling Vulnerabilities in Wiretapping Systems. The technology used for decades by law enforcement agents to wiretap telephones has a security flaw that allows the person being wiretapped to stop the recorder remotely [bugmenot]. It is also possible to falsify the numbers dialed [pdf].
posted by event on Nov 30, 2005 - 5 comments

Click Click

"The number of secret court-authorized wiretaps across the country surged by 19 percent last year, according to court records which also showed that not a single application was denied."
posted by knave on Apr 29, 2005 - 20 comments

FBI adds to wiretap wish list

Proposal to have companies rewire their networks to support easy wiretapping by police "A far-reaching proposal from the FBI, made public Friday, would require all broadband Internet providers, including cable modem and DSL companies, to rewire their networks to support easy wiretapping by police. The FBI's request to the Federal Communications Commission aims to give police ready access to any form of Internet-based communications. If approved as drafted, the proposal could dramatically expand the scope of the agency's wiretap powers, raise costs for cable broadband companies and complicate Internet product development." Read more about the FBI's proposal at Cnet.com. or MSNBC. But where is the actual proposal?
posted by fluffycreature on Mar 15, 2004 - 8 comments

Your call is important to us

The DOJ wants to tap your IMs, your email, your VOIP calls, and your Web browsing -- and they want you to pay for it. The Justice Department is seeking to expand its ability to monitor online traffic by forcing broadband providers to make their services "wiretap-friendly," and a petition filed with the FCC this week says you will foot the bill. Get ready for CALEA 2.0. "As a means of espionage, writs of assistance and general warrants are but puny instruments of tyranny and oppression when compared with wire tapping," the prescient Justice Brandeis observed in 1928.
posted by digaman on Mar 13, 2004 - 15 comments

Bug Bug Buggy

Bug Bug Buggy - Electronic bugging devices have been found at offices used by French and German delegations at European Union headquarters in Brussels. I think I can guess where fingers will get pointed....
posted by tomcosgrave on Mar 19, 2003 - 11 comments

Secret U.S. court OKs electronic spying

Secret U.S. court OKs electronic spying Big Brother much? John Ashcroft is well on his way to becoming the next J. Edgar Hoover, or worse. The government can already secretly spy on what books we're reading, thanks to the Patriot Act. Previous MeFi threads have covered the evils of Total Information Awareness and how it makes everyone a suspect. Now a "secret court" gives the government a green light to spy while the ACLU tried to figure out if there is any recourse.
posted by Dok Millennium on Nov 19, 2002 - 39 comments

Pentagon Plans a Computer System That Would Peek at Personal Data of Americans

Pentagon Plans a Computer System That Would Peek at Personal Data of Americans And this is justified because of National Security. We will lose much that is personal, private, but in turn we will be protefted against the bad guys. Or will we? When NASA and CIA claim they need to spy domestically, and computers gather all data on Americans, what is left that is not what Orwell had suggested might our future be like?Or, as Morth Sahl once labelled a comic record: TheFuture Lies Ahead."
posted by Postroad on Nov 9, 2002 - 97 comments

Secret Court Rebuffs Ashcroft:

Secret Court Rebuffs Ashcroft: A May 17 opinion by the court that oversees the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) alleges that Justice Department and FBI officials supplied erroneous information to the court in more than 75 applications for search warrants and wiretaps, including one signed by then-FBI Director Louis J. Freeh.

Maybe the system actually works.

Thanks to Dack for the link.
posted by mark13 on Aug 23, 2002 - 10 comments

Law enforcement and intelligence agencies now have access to software that can remotely record every keystroke and see every file on a target PC.

Law enforcement and intelligence agencies now have access to software that can remotely record every keystroke and see every file on a target PC. Data Interception by Remote Transmission (D.I.R.T.), developed by Codex Data Systems (you need a username and password to get past the opening screen) can supposedly see through PGP, firewalls, whatever you throw at it apparently. Only works against Win95 so far, but that won't last. Is this hogwash or something crucial?
posted by aflakete on Jun 4, 2001 - 15 comments

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