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FBI Obtains Phone Records With a Post-it Note

samzenpus posted more than 4 years ago | from the do-you-have-a-subpoena-or-a-note-from-home? dept.

Privacy 187

angry tapir writes "The FBI was so cavalier — and telecom companies so eager to help — that a verbal request or even one written on a Post-it note was enough for operators to hand over customer phone records, according to a damning report (PDF) released on Wednesday by the US Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General."

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Oblig. IP jokes. (5, Funny)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840442)

The "Canary Yellow" color of Post-It Notes is a trademark of 3M. [3m.com] See the legalese at the bottom of that site. Canary? Yellow? Too easy.... let's see some punchlines!

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (5, Funny)

2.7182 (819680) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840574)

Look, if the FBI didn't have a good reason, I'm sure they wouldn't have done that. Let's stop trying to hinder their investigations and let them get their jobs done.

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840740)

Or how about we hold the government to their obligation to work within the law?

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (4, Insightful)

v1 (525388) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840846)

it's for the public safety, you do realize that trumps all laws?

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (1)

besalope (1186101) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840978)

Wait, I thought the trump card was "But think of the children!"

Trump phrases (5, Informative)

psithurism (1642461) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841168)

Wait, I thought the trump card was "But think of the children!"

There's a whole suit of 'em:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thought-terminating_clich%C3%A9 [wikipedia.org]

Re:Trump phrases (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30841908)

I'm shocked, it's like they copy&pasted my lexicon in a single wikipedia article.

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841158)

Or how about we hold the government to their obligation to work within the law?

It's not their fault! No one wrote what they should be limited to on a post-it note! The stupid framers of the constitution used lame non-sticky parchment or some crap like that. Their fault for making it not self-adhesive and concise.

Another acceptable alternative would have been to make the constitution some type of transforming robot which would beat us up when we got complacent about our rights and proper limits for law enforcement.

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (2, Funny)

glebovitz (202712) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841260)

I am pretty sure I remember seeing a post-it notes exception clause in the Constitution pertaining to telecom.

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (2, Funny)

joocemann (1273720) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840950)

Look, if the FBI didn't have a good reason, I'm sure they wouldn't have done that. Let's stop trying to hinder their investigations and let them get their jobs done.

Sometimes a good investigator doesn't really need a reason. This is what hunches are all about. Some of the best investigators come from Notre Dame -- and why not? The place is so ridden with valuable hunch-making environments that a man developed a full out hunchback!

I've got a *feeling* that said hunchback ought lead our best forces. FBI or CIA head? Why not!

I'm gonna go with my gut and say I think I ate something sarcastic for lunch and it's not sitting well... eeeggh... brrrff...

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841006)

And that would explain why we have a constitutional amendment which provides for hunches. Wait, there is no such amendment you say, just some that prevent unreasonable search and seizure?

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (2, Informative)

TehDuffman (987864) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841114)

And that would explain why we have a constitutional amendment which provides for hunches. Wait, there is no such amendment you say, just some that prevent unreasonable search and seizure?

Whoosh

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (2, Interesting)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841082)

Hunches are just what you call it when the evidence was gathered illegally. "Police Psychics" are similar evidence launderers. Either that or they're straight up scammers. Frankly, I'm not sure which is worse.

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (3, Insightful)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841446)

No, you're confusing, or allowing others to confuse, real hunches with cover ups.

I've had hunches. Probably everyone has. You just KNOW something to be true, but you can't explain rationally how or why it is true. There's nothing illegal or wrong with a hunch - it's just not admissable as evidence. It DOES make a decent reason to investigate something, but it doesn't validate a warrant.

So - you get your hunch, you investigate as far as you can, and if you find evidence supporting the hunch that convinces a judge, then you get your warrant.

Let's not confuse this with a bad cop who breaks both of a man's knees to get a confession, then calls it a "hunch".

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (0, Troll)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841096)

Your joke is funny because the majority of the FBI are Catholic, and Notre Dame is a Catholic university.

Which explains why they do whatever the hell they please. They're doing God's work ridding the world of the infidels and faggots which dwell in the closets of their minds. They answer to nobody but God.

Re:Oblig. IP jokes. (1)

dov_0 (1438253) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841108)

CANARIES. Convict Army Nearly All Retarded Inbred Evil Sheepshaggers.

Hey (2, Funny)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840458)

I wonder if this method would work at a bank?

I might save some time in the drive thru...

Re:Hey (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840594)

I don't know about the bank, but taxoffice, yes :)

My stalking ex-gf knew someone working at the taxoffices and felt she could query me in these PCs. Ofcourse that pulled out all my financial data and adress. She did that before she was my gf, unknowing to me, to find my adress and god knows what else, and later to stalk me.

Don't overestimate workers...

Re:Hey (4, Funny)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840600)

I wonder if this method would work at a bank?

I might save some time in the drive thru...

Well, it would definitely attract the attention of the FBI anyway...

Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (5, Insightful)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840464)

This is one of the biggest problems with cloud-stored data... if the FBI calls and wants it, they'll also attach a request that the service provider not tell you... and as we see that all fits on a Post-It Note. The FBI doesn't like letting the target of their investigations know they're been snooped upon... and the service provider is glad to not tell you they've violated their own privacy policy by giving out info without the proof that they're being legally obligated to do so. There could be a law in the way requiring... wait, they're already doing this despite there being laws in the way!

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (5, Insightful)

Tanman (90298) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840568)

If they aren't punished, then they are above the law.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840602)

If they aren't punished, then they are above the law.

Well, there are two laws in effect here:

For the public: "If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear."

For the government: "If you have nothing to fear, you have nothing to hide."

It's not the crime, it's the coverup. I wouldn't mind living surveillance state half as much as I do, if only the government were honest with its citizens about it. If that's what it takes to make it legal, go through channels and repeal the Fourth and Fifth.

And yet, even though they have nothing to fear, they still try to hide.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (4, Insightful)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840778)

I wouldn't mind living surveillance state half as much as I do, if only the government were honest with its citizens about it.

You mean like in 1984, where the government was quite explicitly and openly spying on everyone, and sometimes the spook spying on you would speak directly to you if you weren't being a good enough citizen? Yeah that'd be sooo much better.

The coverup isn't good... but no, it's the crime.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (2, Funny)

poopdeville (841677) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841016)

You mean like in 1984, where the government was quite explicitly and openly spying on everyone, and sometimes the spook spying on you would speak directly to you if you weren't being a good enough citizen? Yeah that'd be sooo much better.

This happens already. You've seen those people in black or blue uniforms outside, right? Sometimes they wear tan or brown, if they patrol "highways". Sometimes they go "undercover". Sometimes they walk into ATT's international data routing center and install an entire hidden floor in the building.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (4, Insightful)

joocemann (1273720) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840972)

If they aren't punished, then they are above the law.

Justice continues to escape US Citizens. Current leadership and administrations said they would care, but ultimately have shown complacency and tolerance for injustice. When are we to believe them to be any different? Actions speak louder than words, and the last year of inaction speaks loud and clear as to who we're really dealing with.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (5, Insightful)

Verteiron (224042) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840590)

It can't be said enough: Encrypt everything.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (2, Interesting)

JDevers (83155) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840644)

How do you encrypt a phone call again?

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (2)

EkriirkE (1075937) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840662)

GSM.. oh, wait...

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840698)

http://www.voipnow.org/2007/04/how_to_encrypt_.html

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (4, Informative)

Verteiron (224042) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840738)

Well, there's this [zfoneproject.com] , which is probably the safest method for voice communication. There are software apps for Windows Mobile that encrypt voice connections. You could use an Android phone and Google Voice, provided Google doesn't crater immediately to post-it requests. You could use Skype with the same proviso.

Bottom line is, though, if you have something that you really, really don't want the government to know about it, don't use a phone (particularly and especially a regular cell phone) to communicate it.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840772)

There's also the tried & true drug dealer method....pre paid cells

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30841416)

...which in a little while you won't be able to buy with cash.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840784)

with skype israel's mossad snoops on fring voice and data so there is no protection if you have ever used fring to access your skype account (or any other account for that matter).

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840880)

Futhermore, how do you not disclose the number you dialed? Even if the traffic is encrypted, "envelope data" must remain in-the-clear or the service provider doesn't know what to do with the message.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30841102)

Steganography. Work out a code to talk to your friends: it's fun! Buy cheap pay-as-you-go phones and throw them away when you've used up the minutes. See how long it takes the FBI to catch on!

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1)

Shatrat (855151) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841290)

Prepaid phone.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30841420)

That doesn't work as well as you might think.
There is location data on where the phone is while it is turned on.
Traffic analysis of who you call can reveal who you are (or that you are likely the same person as used a different prepaid cell phone last week).

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30841862)

Talk in Klingon or revert to a WWII tactic of using Code Talkers. Even the Japanese could not break that level of encryption.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (4, Insightful)

Ziekheid (1427027) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840714)

Whenever I tell someone I actuall do that they always start to wonder what I have to hide, they'll be uploading new pictures of last weekends night out on their community profile which isn't set to private a few hours later..
My reason for doing it is simple though, it's none of their damn business. Isn't that enough?

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (4, Funny)

oakgrove (845019) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841022)

Whenever I tell someone I actuall do that they always start to wonder what I have to hide

Do they have curtains covering their windows? What do they have to hide?

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30841550)

Do they not post their keystoke logs on the internet? What do they have to hide?

Thank the PATRIOT Act (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840612)

They're not above the law -- they are following PATRIOT Act that is still in place. This wonderful piece of legislature allows FBI to ask for records while placing a gag order on the source, i.e. whoever is going to give you up will not be allowed to tell you that your records are going to be send to law enforcement agencies.

Want change? Ask Obama to finally become the president of the U.S.

No website really promises privacy (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840692)

Every privacy policy that I've read - and I read every one for every website I do business with - states that they will give information to law enforcement or to entities that enable them to do business or to enhance my customer experience and then some.

They also say that they can change the terms any time they want.

In other words, no website really promises to keep you or your data private in their policies.

Google is one of the biggest offenders, btw. They constantly change their shit.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (0, Offtopic)

astar (203020) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840708)

I am kind of amused by this story. a lot of people are my country right or wrong patriots, but they are patriots. Looking as most recently yesterdays vote in mass. I wonder how long anybody is going to tolerate all this stuff. it does not look to me very much longer. nothing to pat ourselves on the back about yet, but things are looking up. does not have much of anything to do with political parties. pooh, in mass., both candidates were completely credible for the usual core voters.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30841192)

There's a term for "right or wrong patriots" and it's not patriots. They're more properly referred to as "jingoists." This country would be in much better shape if more citizens understood this.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1, Flamebait)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840750)

there is nothing illegal about a service provider handing over their own data - which is exactly what this is. you don't own the phone records, the phone company does.

there's no law against responding to a request from the FBI of your own accord.

does it suck that society has gotten to the point that no one is willing to stick up for anyone else? yes, but this is not illegal.

the only solution is if you paranoid enough about it, only make encrypted IP phone calls from internet cafes.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (2, Informative)

poopdeville (841677) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841036)

there is nothing illegal about a service provider handing over their own data - which is exactly what this is. you don't own the phone records, the phone company does.

Breach of contract. They include a privacy policy in their TOS.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (2, Interesting)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841180)

Breach of contract. They include a privacy policy in their TOS.

Have you ever read your telco privacy policy? My telco is Qwest, and I just went to their website to see exactly what their policy is. I quote:

Qwest discloses personal information collected online to affiliates and to others, including our business partners and vendors, to provide the products and services you request and to enhance those products and services. We may share personal information collected online with the government or third parties who make a lawful request for it. We may also disclose personal information collected online to others to assert and defend our legal rights, and as otherwise authorized or required by law.

They are quite upfront about sharing your information with the government. All they need to do is make "a lawful request" for it. There is no law that says the FBI cannot ASK Qwest for your information, so ASKING is a lawful request.

So, wanna try again? What contract do YOU have?

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1)

RawsonDR (1029682) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841930)

There is no law that says the FBI cannot ASK Qwest for your information, so ASKING is a lawful request.

There's no law that says I can't ASK Qwest for your information, but neither Qwest nor the feds would consider that "a lawful request." They would be held accountable if they were caught giving it to me.

But, indeed, Qwest still seems to be covering their asses with that statement as it pertains to the government. But the "lawful" aspect is referring to whether or not the person lawfully has a right to the information. This is the grey area - does it require a warrant or is that kind of info not considered to be in the same realm of private? That question has to be answered by a court at this point, and that's only if the right people get it pushed that far.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1)

samkass (174571) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841262)

there is nothing illegal about a service provider handing over their own data

IMHO, the question isn't about the legality of handing it over, but the legality of the Government asking for it without a court order. The fourth amendment protects against unreasonable search and seizure, and there is an argument to be made that there is an expectation of privacy regarding this information.

In any case, I don't care if the FBI gets the information with a post-it note, as long as that note has reasonable cause and a judge's signature on it.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841394)

IMHO, the question isn't about the legality of handing it over, but the legality of the Government asking for it without a court order.

There is no law preventing the government from asking without a court order. There is a constitutional amendment dealing with the government compelling the release. I read some of the "damning report", and the worst I could find is where one agent told the telco they were going to get a subpoena for the data, but it was clear from the letter that they hadn't done so. The telco turned it over voluntarily.

The fourth amendment protects against unreasonable search and seizure, and there is an argument to be made that there is an expectation of privacy regarding this information.

Even when the telco tells you EXPLICITLY that they will happily hand your private information over to the government upon request? I posted a paragraph from the Qwest policy just above, and it is clear that all the government has to do is ask for it. I expect other telco's policies are similar of not identical.

In any case, I don't care if the FBI gets the information with a post-it note, as long as that note has reasonable cause and a judge's signature on it.

Why in God's name do you think a request for information needs to have a judge's signature on it? A subpoena, yes. A "can you send us..." note? Do you think that every question that every cop asks someone needs to have a judge's approval? Do you really think that the cop who pulls you over for a traffic violation really needs to call a judge to get approval to ask you if he can search your vehicle? That's ridiculous.

The issue here is not the government asking, it's that the telcos give it. But then, they've told you they will, so you have no reason to expect them to grow a backbone and say "no" when asked.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (3, Interesting)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841538)

"Do you really think that the cop who pulls you over for a traffic violation really needs to call a judge to get approval to ask you if he can search your vehicle? That's ridiculous."

In the US? Yes, he does. I've denied permission to search my vehicle on three occasions, and got different answers each time. 1. "If a dog smells something, I can search without your permission." "So, get the dog!" 2. "I can arrest you, and take you jail, then impound your car and search it." "Arrest me on what charge? Failure to agree to be searched?" 3. "I can get a warrant." "If you have probable cause, why don't you already have the warrant?"

In short, my car has NOT been searched, because I DENIED PERMISSION. The moment you waver, and say something that might be construed as permission to search, you WILL BE searched.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (2, Insightful)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841644)

"Do you really think that the cop who pulls you over for a traffic violation really needs to call a judge to get approval to ask you if he can search your vehicle? That's ridiculous."

In the US? Yes, he does.

NO, he does not. He can ask you at any time if he can search your vehicle. There is no reason to call a judge to get permission to ask. If he's going to call a judge, it's because you said NO and he's going to get a warrant.

I've denied permission to search my vehicle on three occasions,

And did the cop call a judge prior to asking you for permission on any of those three occasions? Of course not. There is no requirement for him to do so.

The moment you waver, and say something that might be construed as permission to search, you WILL BE searched.

Of course. And if you try to claim "he didn't ask a judge before asking me for permission" you'll be laughed ... I was going to write "out of court", but really "laughed into a jail cell".

If the telcos are giving the information to the FBI voluntarily, then there is no judge and no subpoena required. The Constitution protects you from involuntary acts (like searches of your car) but not from voluntary ones (like searches where you said "ok"). The FBI can ASK the telco for information anytime they want. The law does not prohibit this. Just like they can ask to search your car. They cannot DEMAND the information without a warrant. A "post-it note" doesn't require a judge's signature. A subpoena does.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (2, Insightful)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841440)

this is one reason the USA is going down the tubes - the idea that everything needs to tie up court time.

government agents are legally allowed to ask for the teleco's co operation, and the teleco can refuse or provide the info. IF the teleco refuses and the FBI wishs to pursue it and FORCE them to comply, THEN it requires a court order.

people, why is this concept so hard to grasp? every communications contract i've ever seen states clearly they will assist law enforcement, and makes zero promise to protect you from investigation.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1)

FLEB (312391) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841986)

every communications contract i've ever seen states clearly they will assist law enforcement, and makes zero promise to protect you from investigation.

And this is (part of) the problem.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1)

The FBI (1717712) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840892)

The FBI would like you to know that you are currently not being investigated. How you managed to get a +3, Insightful with that kind of post, however, calls for an investigation.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841042)

and the service provider is glad to not tell you they've violated their own privacy policy by giving out info without the proof that they're being legally obligated to do so.

The typical service provider terms of service agreement warns you that the provider will cooperate with law enforcement requests for information.

It's the rule rather than the exception to the rule, that law enforcement can simply nicely ask the service provider, and get the info they need, contact details, data, etc.

It's easy to see how this can lead to use of post-it notes, once certain companies become well enough acquainted with certain law enforcement officers.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841094)

There could be a law in the way requiring... wait, they're already doing this despite there being laws in the way!

Exactly what law is in the way of the FBI making a request for information and the source giving it to them?

Now, there's a requirement for warrants and stuff if the source isn't cooperative, but gosh if I can find a law that says the FBI cannot ASK for information without a warrant. The only ones I know say that they cannot DEMAND it without one.

...and the service provider is glad to not tell you they've violated their own privacy policy by giving out info without the proof that they're being legally obligated to do so.

Hey! That's the point. They weren't legally obligated to do so.

The bad guys here aren't the FBI for asking, it's the sources for giving it without being forced to do so.

Car analogy: who's the stupid one if a cop pulls you over and then asks to search your car AND YOU SAY OK? Which one of your constitutional rights was violated? (Hint: none.)

Well they are used to companies cooperating (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841330)

That's part of the problem is that these companies get so overly cooperative that the FBI doesn't have to bother with proper procedure, and so doesn't because it is easier.

We've run in to that on occasion. The FBI will want some info and we are more than happy to provide it. However, being that I work at a university, they have to do it right and get a subpoena and all that. The has vexed them before and taken way longer than it should. They don't get mad or threatening or anything, it just seems like it hasn't occurred to them that they might have to go through the proper channels before we can give them what they want.

Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (1)

orlanz (882574) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841352)

Law enforcement thinks they're above the law

I don't think you understand how it works in the US. Let me clarify:

Major Industry Association
Lobbyists
Rich People
Big Business
Dept. of Justice
Politicians
President
Foreign Nations & Laws
Law Enforcement
Law
Stupid Rich People
Really poor People
Small Business
Everyone else.
Piece of Dog Poo
YOU reading this.

See? Now what did you learn? Ans: Don't look up!

Democrats, as usual! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840546)

Is there anything the democrats wont do to destroy America?

Re:Democrats, as usual! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840614)

Check your facts. This has been going on for more than 1 year.

Re:Democrats, as usual! (4, Funny)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840702)

No, remember, exposing what the FBI is doing is what destroys America. If you don't want the FBI to illegally spy on terrorists -- and of course that's the only people they spy on, even if the report says the opposite -- then you want terrorists to destroy America. Because you love terrorists. And hate America.

Re:Democrats, as usual! (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30841684)

I love my country--signed up to take a bullet (or an IED for her); however, I fear my gov't FAR more than any terrorist.

Al-Qaeda: 10,000 kills (approx)

Fed & State felony convictions: 9,000,000 (approx)

I'll take my chances with the terrorists, thank you.

Re:Democrats, as usual! (4, Insightful)

Ashriel (1457949) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840798)

Actually, if you had read the article, you'd realize that the DoJ findings pertain to FBI activity between 2003-2007. The report also mentions that towards the end, the FBI began cleaning up its practices a little - probably in anticipation of a new administration. Of course, now that the new administration has revealed itself as the same old administration with better table manners, they're probably back at it again.

MOD PARENT DOWN!!1! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30841026)

This is Slashdot. We're not going to get facts get in the way of a good Democrat-bashing, are we?! Mod parent down!

ThePlanet (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840554)

From an ex-employee who worked there, I have heard FBI agents walk into TP's data center with their own key cards, pull whatever they want and on the way out, wave at the guy running the DC while dropping off the necessary paperwork on the way out.

Re:ThePlanet (1)

geekmux (1040042) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841592)

From an ex-employee who worked there, I have heard FBI agents walk into TP's data center with their own key cards, pull whatever they want and on the way out, wave at the guy running the DC while dropping off the necessary paperwork on the way out.

Ah, if you're going to be that ignorant about how you run a Data Center, why in the hell even require any "necessary paperwork"? Obviously no one cares what they take, so what's the point of a paper trail?

Re:ThePlanet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30841934)

How did you hear them wave?

fucZk. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840578)

the future ho7ds [goat.cx]

Re:fucZk. (2, Funny)

Clandestine_Blaze (1019274) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840770)

One of the rare times an AC goatse post should actually be considered insightful and informative.

Assholes. (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840640)

Not much else to say... :(

In the USA... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840650)

there is no need for the government to hack corporations. They cooperate.

This allows us to feel indignant when it happens in other countries.

"LAW ENFORCEMENT" (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840654)

Break the law, go to jail!

Re:"LAW ENFORCEMENT" (4, Funny)

goldaryn (834427) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841944)

Break the law, go to jail!

I find your ideas fascinating, and I would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

Best part of the story (1)

commodoresloat (172735) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840668)

The FBI director's password was written on the back of the post-it note.

Unrelatedly (2, Interesting)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840676)

The FBI used these phone records to send a text message to a New York based purse theif asking him to turn himself in, in which he kindly obliged.

But was it official? (1)

SEWilco (27983) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840726)

But was it an official FBI 3M PostIt Note?

Category name change (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840752)

I propose that yro be renamed wro - What Rights Online?

Curse them... (2, Funny)

tool462 (677306) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840760)

Curse Romy and Michelle [imdb.com] for inventing something that the government is using to spy on it's own people!

I say we hang them for treason!

Tried that at a bank once ;-) (3, Funny)

syousef (465911) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840808)

Wrote on a post-it-note "Want $2,000,000" in small unmarked notes. All they did was have me arrested:( Clearly I need to work on my social engineering skills. Maybe next time I won't walk in with my helmet on, so they can see my big friendly smile.

Credit card statements (3, Funny)

rwa2 (4391) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840824)

I don't really care about my phone records (I never really call anyone anyway). But how hard is it for them to sift through my credit card records looking for dirt?

Re:Credit card statements (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30841362)

Yeah, I know what you mean. The other day I was chatting up this hooker and..woahhhhhhh. Wait a minute...

Re:Credit card statements (1)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841830)

One or two queries to their database

Re:Credit card statements (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30842138)

Very easy.

Of course, the operators will be prosecuted (1)

Night64 (1175319) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840842)

Or sued. Not the agents or supervisors, of course. But some low level telecom operator will pay. They need a scapegoat. Now.

Awesome! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30840856)

FBI is agile!

Yet it is amazing... (2, Funny)

QuietLagoon (813062) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840976)

... that there are those, even a major cable news network, who want to return to the days of the Bush era. What are they fuckin' thinking? Are they even thinking at all?

Re:Yet it is amazing... (4, Insightful)

Shatrat (855151) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841314)

Pretending this is a partisan issue is one good way to guarantee it continues and gets worse.

Embeded employees (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 4 years ago | (#30840998)

The report refers to three telecom providers that placed employees in FBI offices, but it does not name the operators.

That should scare you even more than using post-it notes..

Remember (1)

ClosedSource (238333) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841274)

You could be thrown into Guantanamo forever if the President declared you an enemy combatant. No post-it or evidence required.

Keep your business in your box (1)

cyberzephyr (705742) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841422)

It's kinda like that keep your pant's off the ground Rap.

F- a cloud, i hate even the concept of the Cloud.

I started out with a box that went out to the world and just came back(BBS), (it was by phone modem for the younger ones out there) not this James Bond/Enemy of the State stuff. It's getting Stupid.

Re:Keep your business in your box (1)

Zorque (894011) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841502)

I don't really know what you're saying or how it relates to the story, but good job being overcoming your schizophrenia enough to able to click "submit"!

Re:Keep your business in your box (1)

cyberzephyr (705742) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841938)

Ok.

Maybe i made a mistake, it happens.

I mean't if you keep everything in your head instead of relying on some easily accessable device (Post-it or Thumbdrive) you might not get caught. But only if your'e a criminal.

I'm not.

Easily Abusable (1)

muphin (842524) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841430)

Phone Company: Hello you have called ###
Bad Person: I am Agent Poopyganger from the FBI Division of Computer Crime, i need to records of mobile number [insert celebrity #] from the last 72 hours.
Phone Company: Please Hold
Phone Company: where would you like me to send this data?
Bad Person: send it to horny86@gmail.com
Phone Company: Is there anything else I can help you with?
Bad Person: Not right now, cya
Hang Up.

How is this report "damning"?!? (5, Insightful)

geekmux (1040042) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841520)

I'll believe it is a "damning" report when I see the FBI Director forced to "retire" over this. Not bloody likely.

Yeah, I know this kind of shit probably went on pre-9/11. It was likely kept a bit more secret then. I just have a problem with the whole "yeah, so what if I did...What the fuck are YOU gonna do about it?" mentality they seem to take today with it, that's all. They don't operate along side, around, or even above the law. They just don't give a fuck anymore because everyone was issued a master key labeled "anti-terrorism". Why should I be worried about a terrorist attack when I'm too busy being attacked by my own Government?

I find it absurdly ironic that the "Justice" Department released this. Why do we have that Department again? They don't seem to be doing much these days to earn their name or the billions we pour into it.

Post-It Note (1)

gyrogeerloose (849181) | more than 4 years ago | (#30841774)

But it was a really, really impressive Post-It note...

what are you guys worried about? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30841798)

i'm pretty sure being a nerd and a fag isn't illegal in the states anymore. you have nothing left to hide.

In the morning! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30842244)

Police State, here we come.

Suprised? (1)

oljanx (1318801) | more than 4 years ago | (#30842288)

"Some telecom employees, who were based in FBI offices so as to quickly respond to such requests..." The exchange of information is so direct that the parties involved literally work side by side. "Hi, my name is Bob and I've been hired by TelecomX specifically to provide information to the FBI." Nothing about this is frightening.
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