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Cell Carriers Responded Last Year To 1.3M Law Enforcement Data Requests

timothy posted about 2 years ago | from the surely-it's-because-the-requests-were-well-formatted dept.

AT&T 155

Stirling Newberry writes "The New York Times reports: 'In the first public accounting of its kind, cellphone carriers reported that they responded to a daunting 1.3 million demands for subscriber data last year from law enforcement agencies seeking text messages, caller locations and other information in the course of investigations.' One stinging statistic: AT&T responds to an average of 700 requests per day, and turns down only 18 per week. Sprint gets 500,000 requests per year. While many requests are backed by court orders, most are not. Some include 'dumps' of tower data, which captures everyone near by at a certain time."

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155 comments

First Post (4, Funny)

GeneralTurgidson (2464452) | about 2 years ago | (#40587559)

Sent from my iPhone

Re:First Post (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587619)

We know where you are.

Re:First Post (4, Funny)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | about 2 years ago | (#40587685)

Ha! Not with the way I'm holding my ph

AT&T gets 230 requests for data per hour (4, Insightful)

olsmeister (1488789) | about 2 years ago | (#40587573)

230*24*365=2,014,800 [google.com] . TFS says they the industry responded to 1.3M. Can they possibly have that many pending? Where are Verizon's stats?

Re:AT&T gets 230 requests for data per hour (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587683)

230*24*365=2,014,800 [google.com] . TFS says they the industry responded to 1.3M. Can they possibly have that many pending? Where are Verizon's stats?

Verizon is surprisingly good with customer data. I don't have any numbers relevant to this discussion, but Verizon has sued multiple times to keep customer information private. Of course, I pay them an arm and a leg... but you get what you pay for I guess. Excellent reception, speedy fast 4G and they'll fight for my privacy... hope they continue on that path!

Re:AT&T gets 230 requests for data per hour (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588663)

You have got to be kidding me. Verizon is horrible for so many reasons. I had them and compared to t-mobile I'd never go back. Verizon doesn't like standards. They have there own network for god sake and the one phone they have with GSM support (although not through them) locks you into a contacted third party. As far as phones go they ship the most proprietary locked down phones too. If any large carrier really gave a shit about your privacy they'd force chipset vendors to release the source code and do the same of the phones OS. Then they'd offer prepaid options and implement Tor. The phone's modem would have processor isolation at at minimum so that the provider can't snoop on your phone's data (apologise if I'm using the wrong technical words). They would also implement a receiver only mode (think old fashion pagers) that would alert the customer to an incoming call without the phone having to be on. If the customer picked up only then would the tracking even be technically possible while the person was on the phone. None of this would even prevent tracking in the event of an emergency call because 911 would still get the data triangulation data / GPS info when the call connected to to the emergency service.

Re:AT&T gets 230 requests for data per hour (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587981)

230*24*365">230*24*365=2,014,800

230*24*5*52=1435200.... let's assume that the data centres only receive these requests on weekdays.

Re:AT&T gets 230 requests for data per hour (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588015)

230*16*5*52=956,800... assuming that the data centre operates for 16hours a day / 5 days / week.

Re:AT&T gets 230 requests for data per hour (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588449)

Verizon said: there is an API for that

In Soviet ... (5, Insightful)

xtal (49134) | about 2 years ago | (#40587579)

Damn, it's not funny anymore.

Re:In Soviet ... (3, Insightful)

ThePeices (635180) | about 2 years ago | (#40588121)

In Soviet ... Damn, it's not funny anymore.

Anymore?

Re:In Soviet ... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588447)

In Soviet ... Damn, it's not funny anymore.

Anymore?

You're young, so we'll forgive it. It really was funny, once.

There once was a time in which American history books touted the United States of America as a free nation, and among other things, they cited per-capita incarceration rates as a statistic.

It was around the 80s, which would have been about the time Yakov Smirnov created the comedic character of a (Cold-War era) Russian visitor to the United States.

Alpha site: DDR. (Failed. A surveillance state implemented in paper reports and in meatspace-based informers, it collapsed under the weight of its own bureaucracy)
Beta site: PRC. (Great firewall, YHOO selling out dissidients, testing grounds for CSCO, Nagios gear, etc.)
Production-ready: USA. (Redacted.)

"Funny once", said Mycroft.

Re:In Soviet ... (5, Insightful)

pitchpipe (708843) | about 2 years ago | (#40588359)

It hasn't been funny for a while. The law enforcement class is becoming a separate body from the average citizen class. (I know this through personally speaking with a friend who is a law enforcement officer, he has changed in a way that separates him from the way your average person thinks. It has made him paranoid of your average person.) It is becoming more of an enforcing arm of the aristocracy, bringing in funds for the state and prisoners for the aristocratic owners of the private prisons. If things keep heading down this path I fear they are going to get seriously out of control. I wish the ruling class could see this, and had the will to do something about if before that happens (because god damn, voting doesn't seem to do anything anymore). I don't want to live in those kinds of "interesting times".

Re:In Soviet ... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588575)

I wish the ruling class could see this, and had the will to do something about if before that happens

Yeah, those stupid rulers. How could they get themselves into this situation??

Re:In Soviet ... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588613)

Has your law enforcement 'friend' (who no longer thinks like everyone else) been tested for Toxoplasmosis lately?

Re:In Soviet ... (1, Insightful)

rsmith-mac (639075) | about 2 years ago | (#40588625)

It has made him paranoid of your average person.

If you're not paranoid of the average person, you either live in a bubble or haven't been paying attention to the rest of the world.

The average person will gladly lie, cheat, and steal (or worse), and is only stopped by immediate negative consequences for those actions. The average person should not be trusted - they'd take everything you had if they reasonably believed they could get away with it forever.

Re:In Soviet ... (1)

jhoegl (638955) | about 2 years ago | (#40588697)

So then if 80% of the world is average...

Re:In Soviet ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588903)

We grade on a curve

Re:In Soviet ... (1)

flyingfsck (986395) | about 2 years ago | (#40589181)

...but 30% are more average than the others.

Re:In Soviet ... (1)

rsborg (111459) | about 2 years ago | (#40588735)

It has made him paranoid of your average person.

If you're not paranoid of the average person, you either live in a bubble or haven't been paying attention to the rest of the world.

The average person will gladly lie, cheat, and steal (or worse), and is only stopped by immediate negative consequences for those actions. The average person should not be trusted - they'd take everything you had if they reasonably believed they could get away with it forever.

This applies equally well to Law Enforcement Officers, the Aristocracy and Politicians. Combine with Acton's Law [1], and you get ripe conditions for mass abuse of power, and selling out the public as a whole.

LEO's need to be held to a higher standard. The problem is ultimately the issue of who funds them - the 1%, by cutting the funding of such organizations, hold them hostage to their whims. When was the last time you heard of a CEO getting a traffic ticket?

[1] http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/absolute-power-corrupts-absolutely.html [phrases.org.uk]

Re:In Soviet ... (3, Insightful)

dgatwood (11270) | about 2 years ago | (#40589867)

When was the last time you heard of a CEO getting a traffic ticket?

Someone told me once that S.J. got them almost weekly for driving around without a license plate. Eventually, all the Cupertino cops recognized his car and didn't bother pulling him over anymore, but that took a few years.

Re:In Soviet ... (1)

jo42 (227475) | about 2 years ago | (#40589373)

The average person will gladly lie, cheat, and steal (or worse), and is only stopped by immediate negative consequences for those actions. The average person should not be trusted - they'd take everything you had if they reasonably believed they could get away with it forever.

That describes every single frickin politician and corporate type. Welcome to the jungle.

Re:In Soviet ... (4, Insightful)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about 2 years ago | (#40589843)

The average person will gladly lie, cheat, and steal (or worse), and is only stopped by immediate negative consequences for those actions. The average person should not be trusted - they'd take everything you had if they reasonably believed they could get away with it forever.

That is an argument that leads to fascism via technocracy. If it really were true we would never have developed as a civilization because the one thing necessary for civilization to work is trust. Not trust based on some version of hellfire and brimstone but the trust that while men are imperfect, we are fundamentally good-natured. [psych.ubc.ca]

Re:In Soviet ... (2)

Ramley (1168049) | about 2 years ago | (#40588713)

I fear they are going to get seriously out of control.

We're waaaay past "seriously out of control" already. Perhaps a segment of the population is beginning to wake up to it, but it could be far too late to find a way to take action to stop the madness.

Re:In Soviet ... (3, Insightful)

DerekLyons (302214) | about 2 years ago | (#40588861)

It hasn't been funny for a while. The law enforcement class is becoming a separate body from the average citizen class. (I know this through personally speaking with a friend who is a law enforcement officer, he has changed in a way that separates him from the way your average person thinks

Most geeks think differently than your average person. So do most accountants. So do most veterans. (Though how they think differently varies wildly depending on the branch they served in and/or their specific specialty.) So do most engineers. Etc... etc... I suspect you suffer from confirmation bias.

Re:In Soviet ... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40589023)

... a law enforcement officer, he has changed in a way ...

How long have you known this person? When his job is to fine or imprison the people he meets everyday, of course his attitude is going to change. Everybody will see him as the enemy and many will act accordingly. A hostile workplace will result in paranoid employees. Add the pain of mopping-up splattered pedestrians or drug-addicts, and the hero complex held by most law enforcement suffers severe dissonance. A change in personality is unavoidable.

You keep using that word (2)

TheRealMindChild (743925) | about 2 years ago | (#40587601)

While many requests are backed by court orders, most are not.

Many: Adjective: A large number of

I think your perspective is skewed

Re:You keep using that word (1)

ZosX (517789) | about 2 years ago | (#40587647)

While some requests are backed by court orders, most are not.

While some requests are backed by court orders, many are not.

Both are correct. fixed that for you.

Re:You keep using that word (4, Insightful)

Attack DAWWG (997171) | about 2 years ago | (#40587763)

Most means more than 50%.

You could have 660,000 requests of the 1.3 million not backed by court orders, and that would be just over 50%, so it would be "most."

The rest, 640,000 or so, would still certainly qualify as "many." Even if there were only 100,000 requests backed by court orders, that would still be "many." It may be way way too few, but that's beside the point.

I don't know what the real numbers are in this case, but technically, you are incorrect.

Re:You keep using that word (0)

TheRealMindChild (743925) | about 2 years ago | (#40588023)

Many is going to mean "a whole bunch of". It is subjective, however, common use means "a significant amount". Contrasting that with "more than 50%" leads to no little comparative value whatsoever. The issue is that it is an obvious sensationalism.

Re:You keep using that word (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588141)

I'd consider %18 a significant amount. What if your wallet magically lost %18 of your money.

Re:You keep using that word (1)

EnempE (709151) | about 2 years ago | (#40588563)

Lets just put it down to a rounding error shall we?

Most means more than 50%.
Allow me to run with that fact for a second
If it was not exactly 1.3 million requests, say 1.32 million requests and half of the actual figure was converted to a percentage against the concatenated figure of 1.3 million then you could end up with 50.76% both backed and unbacked by court orders. Rounding that to the nearest significant figure would show that 51% were backed and unbacked, which in both cases is a majority. Backed up by these figures we could state that most are backed by court orders but most aren't.

It could be a case of poor programming rather than poor grammar that is at fault here ....

More lousy editing. (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587607)

230 per hour is 2 million requests a year. Obviously its wrong, if all the carriers handle 1.3 million per year. Per the article, it is 230 "Emergency" requests per day, with 720 Lawful (Subpoena, court order, etc).

Not to mention its a partial article, "This article has been truncated pending paywall integration."

Hate to say it, /. quality is seriously starting to flounder.

Re:More lousy editing. (2, Informative)

Stirling Newberry (848268) | about 2 years ago | (#40587771)

Yes, my fingers typed hour when my brain meant day. My error.

Re:More lousy editing. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587875)

Except that it's completely wrong. It's 700 per day with 230 of that being classed as "emergencies" so the error is not just a mistype.

Re:More lousy editing. (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588341)

You also forgot to stay anon :P

Re:More lousy editing. (1)

FormOfActionBanana (966779) | about 2 years ago | (#40588925)

I would never tell you this to your face, but is your fault Slashdot sucks! (at least today)

Re:More lousy editing. (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587877)

Slashdot commenters have been complaining about falling quality for over a decade. Has it occurred to you that maybe Slashdot has never actually been very good?

Re:More lousy editing. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587893)

"Hate to say it, /. quality is seriously starting to flounder."
 
You just noticed this?
 
This site has been going down hill for some times now. I can't even remember the last time I bothered to log in with my real account.

Re:More lousy editing. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587951)

This site has been going down hill for some times now.

Where "Some time now" means "since 1997."

Re:More lousy math (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587909)

Clearly the 230 per hour refers to the busiest hours of the day. And the requests probably don't come through that fast after midnight, presumably because there are fewer enforcement officers at their desks at that time.

Re:More lousy editing. (1)

BronsCon (927697) | about 2 years ago | (#40587967)

Hate to say it, /. quality is seriously starting to flounder.

Starting?

Re:More lousy editing. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588011)

Hate to say it, /. quality is seriously over

There.

Re:More lousy editing. (1)

ohnocitizen (1951674) | about 2 years ago | (#40588451)

So that's 5530 per day, 720 (13%) of which are lawful. So 87% of the requests are illegal, and AT&T turns down 18 (0.04%) of the total # of requests per week. Those are some stark numbers.

the survellience state is totally out of control (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587609)

the only way to not be tracked, sniffed, snooped and all around spied on is to shut off all the technology and live old school. how long till they pass a law requiring you to buy a smart phone (for your own good of course)? I support "socialized medicine" but that psycho obamacare shit is not the way to do it because now we can all be forced to buy anything they want including gear to spy on ourselves.

Re:the survellience state is totally out of contro (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587751)

Hopefully Obamacare will provide adequate quantities of haloperidol for you.

Re:the survellience state is totally out of contro (5, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 2 years ago | (#40588319)

It's a surprisingly common problem, unfortunately. People with the nucleus of an actual point 'Yo, the onrushing surveillance state is bad, m'kay', then encounter some sort of strange cognitive hiccup that causes them to latch onto the nearest potentially-hostile object like a belligerent drunk at closing time, rather than something much more plausible that doesn't make them sound like a drooling nutcase.

Had the grandparent poster simply ranted about the CALEA(which did include some direct state funding of infrastructure 'upgrades' to support wiretapping, and obviously serves to bundle buying telecommunications services with paying for wiretapping infrastructure) and has been in play since 1994 he would have been on totally solid ground.

If he wanted something a little more sweeping, he could have discussed the 1970's and earlier situation(which, while technologically crude, was so bad that FISA, in 1978, counted as 'reform'...), then gone on to FISA, ECHELON should probably show up somewhere, possibly given the whole 'Clipper' situation a nod, then done CALEA, and then finished with an overview of how post-2001 has been an energetic sprint downhill, with substantial(but largely classified) evidence of extralegal surveillance, despite generous boundaries for what constitutes 'legal', the 2008 retroactive immunity bill, and so forth.

It Isn't. That. Bloody. Difficult. While parts are formally classified, or just-not-talked-about in public, large swaths of the US surveillance apparatus were simply built right in the open, with publicly available laws, phone-tapping technology advertised on the vendors' web sites, and NSA datacenters too large to hide from orbital observation. And yet, no matter how easy we make it, people just will not be satisfied without some sort of shadowy conspiracy that makes them sound totally nuts...

Re:the survellience state is totally out of contro (1, Troll)

grantspassalan (2531078) | about 2 years ago | (#40588367)

"how long till they pass a law requiring you to buy a smart phone"

According to the US Supreme Court, such a law will just be another tax.There is already a law on the books requiring a GPS device in every car and eventually they will require a chip to be implanted in every baby and later in every adult. 666 It is not only possible, but will be a reality in the not too distant future.

Re:the survellience state is totally out of contro (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588679)

just wait till they make you carry "digital i.d." with a gps in it. then when the cop stops you and asks for i.d. he can see everywhere you've been that day or ... for your entire life basically.

It seems impressive (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587613)

But only on the surface. You think there aren't lots of crimes everyday, many of which might have some evidence from one or more cellphones? 230 an hour? Across a country?

Statistics, they seem big if you present them that way, but another makes to look different.

Discrepancy in numbers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587617)

ATT 230 reqs/hour -> ~2 million/year
Sprint 0.5 million/year

Total 2.5 million/year
+other carriers

The 1.3 million request figure is widely understated.

Re:Discrepancy in numbers (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 2 years ago | (#40588427)

The 1.3 million request figure is widely understated.

I love the way the way you studiously avoided questioning the veracity of the ATT data point.

Re:Discrepancy in numbers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588621)

Maybe he did, but why ya gotta be such a dick about it?

Makes you wish... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587633)

...someone would fight for your privacy. No one's going to, though, so fight for yourself.

Research privacy methods, do your homework, and protect your own privacy. Let's hope this $@%! ends soon.

Re:Makes you wish... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588037)

The only reason I would be pissed about the Feds listening in to my phone convos is if I'm talking to someone about a business idea that I plan to execute. They can listen to all the phone sex/ting I have with women they want. Doesn't affect me negatively.

Re:Makes you wish... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588185)

The only reason I would be pissed about the Feds listening in to my phone convos is if I'm talking to someone about a business idea that I plan to execute. They can listen to all the phone sex/ting I have with women they want. Doesn't affect me negatively.

It certainly affects us negatively.
sincerely,
The Feds.

Strange math (3, Informative)

nospam007 (722110) | about 2 years ago | (#40587635)

"...they responded to a daunting 1.3 million demands for subscriber data...' One stinging statistic: AT&T gets 230 requests for data per hour, and turns down only 18 per week. "

So if AT&T alone gets over 2 million, where the heck does the 1.3 million come from?

((24 * 365) * 230) - (18 * 52) = 2 013 864

230 * 8*5*52 = 478400 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587727)

Work week = 5 days of 8 hours presumably, I don't see how it affects his core point: that out of the huge number of requests they get they reject an insignificant amount.

Especially the tower dumps, that's mass surveillance trawling.

Re:Strange math (5, Informative)

Bob9113 (14996) | about 2 years ago | (#40587807)

...they responded to a daunting 1.3 million demands for subscriber data...' One stinging statistic: AT&T gets 230 requests for data per hour, and turns down only 18 per week.

The summary is mistaken. From the article:

AT&T alone now responds to an average of more than 700 requests a day, with about 230 of them regarded as emergencies that do not require the normal court orders and subpoena.

Percentages -- (4, Interesting)

Bookwyrm (3535) | about 2 years ago | (#40587653)

Not to sound dismissive of the situation, but I have to be kind of curious -- does anyone have the statistics/numbers for how the increasing number of requests to carriers for subscriber data aligns with the increasing number of people using cellular devices (and that some people now have multiple cellular devices)? It would be useful to to understand if the rate of increase of requests is far in excess of the rate of increase in subscriber growth (and perhaps decrease in land-line usage), mimics it, or is smaller than it. (I am assuming it is exceeding the subscriber growth rate considerably, but it would be nice to have the breakdown.)

Re:Percentages -- (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588557)

According to CITA (http://www.ctia.org/consumer_info/index.cfm/AID/10323) there are more than 331 million subscribers in the US. So we are talking about something like 0.3%.

Re:Percentages -- (1, Funny)

DerekLyons (302214) | about 2 years ago | (#40588867)

This is Slashdot - we only deal in facts when they're not likely to disturb a Two Minute Hate.

Perpetuity (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587665)

Now that we have a new perpetual war, can we just drop the last one, the drug war, to keep the populace more pacified and distracted from the increasingly invasive surveillance and searches and confiscations. We don't need that old tired war anymore. It served its purpose by providing all the legal hooks as stated and of course the funding and pretense to militarize the civilian police force and make all domestic citizens suspects of SOMETHING.

Crashing the currency broke the backs of those in a position to push back. Solved. Ironic that "foreigners" are the new freedom fighters, eh?

Trying to put this into perspective.. (4, Interesting)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | about 2 years ago | (#40587731)

Sprint gets 500,000 requests per year.

Are each of those requests for data from one user each? Or is it something like one request per SMS message? Could they be trying to collect whole conversations one request at a time?

I'm just trying to figure out if these 500k requests mean 500k individuals being investigated or of it's more like 1,000 people across the whole country.

Re:Trying to put this into perspective.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588093)

Do we even know that a request has to be about only a single individual? Can requests be made like "tell me all people within a half mile of this location between these times"?

Re:Trying to put this into perspective.. (2)

KookyMan (850095) | about 2 years ago | (#40588243)

I'm assuming the request can be as specific as one call/SMS to basically a data dump of a cell tower (Basically everything about every phone within range of a certain tower.)

So, optimistically we're talking between 1.3 Million (low end) and 1.3 Billion (high end [assuming 1,000 devices within range of a given tower or group of towers for triangulation]) data points of information. Everything from who someone was talking to, when, to text message conversations, to where was this customer and who may have been with them in the area (via tower dump of one or multiple neighbor towers to allow triangulation)?

(The tower information dump was not mentioned within this article, but I recall reading about that practice recently, and I believe it was another article on /.)

Little scary isn't it?

Re:Trying to put this into perspective.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588429)

To really put this in perspective, it is estimated that 12,000,000 crimes are committed in the US each year.

Re:Trying to put this into perspective.. (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | about 2 years ago | (#40589201)

Crimes, not criminals. I have the same question about your statistic!

Re:Trying to put this into perspective.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40589481)

I like you. Keep posting.

One out of every 230 people? (1)

linebackn (131821) | about 2 years ago | (#40587745)

I'm tired so I hope I haven't gotten these numbers mixed up:

So there are roughly three hundred million people in the USA and 1.3 million requests? Since they mention emergencies I presume they are including 911 calls. There are probably some requests for the same people but they don't say. But with what they give, this means one out of every 230 has either called 911 this last year, or has been investigated.

Really?

I glad they're so quick and on the ball (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about 2 years ago | (#40587761)

You never know.. There might be a terrorist out there.... cue [youtube.com]

Voluntarily? (1)

stanlyb (1839382) | about 2 years ago | (#40587769)

I have to ask, with or without fight? Because, as we know, it is too expensive for them to keep log for all the users..... LOL, Who am i kidding?

Many and Most (4, Informative)

BondGamer (724662) | about 2 years ago | (#40587827)

How can many have court orders but most do not? Shouldn't it be some and most? I went to read the article to find the answer and was not shocked to find out the summery is misleading. Of the 700 requests per day, 230 were without court order or about 33%. A lot less than "most".

Re:Many and Most (3, Interesting)

blackraven14250 (902843) | about 2 years ago | (#40588143)

Also, the sheer number is astounding, if the overlap on these requests tends to mean there' mostly unique customers on these requests. 1 out of every 100 people in the US is spied on seems to be complete overkill for their job.

Re:Many and Most (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588269)

Many is purely contextual and bound by your interpretation of what is many. I grab a hand full of sand on the beach; I hold MANY grains of sand and yet MOST of the sand is still there.

Re:Many and Most (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588541)

230 court orders per day is "many" in my book.

More Prisons! (5, Insightful)

fullback (968784) | about 2 years ago | (#40587845)

Aren't 25% of all the prisoners in the world already in American prisons? The police are just trying to stimulate the economy by improving the top line in the prison and criminal court industry.

Hey, it's not personal; it's business. Wars, invasions, thousands of otherwise unemployable feeling you up at airports (and bus and train stations soon!), militarized police forces, small town sheriffs with tanks and full battle gear and tens of thousands of people listening to all of your conversations and reading your email.

Land of the free, my ass. Land of the pansies who won't stand up to anyone.

Re:More Prisons! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588965)

Prisons are a good source of cheap labor which may help America compete globally... it may be our best form of slave labor.

The wars help stimulate the economy, since a little more than 50% of the economy is supporting or providing the nation's defense. We find new and interesting ways to justify war, and it becomes easier to make excuses as the public ignores the occurrence of war... since America is always at war, whether it be with the drugs they didn't provide or the oil they wish to steal.

America may be the land of the free, but only in a negative sense, free to pillage the world, until proven otherwise.

Frog's Almost Done (4, Insightful)

SuperCharlie (1068072) | about 2 years ago | (#40587935)

You know how to boil a frog..you put him in cold water an slowly raise the temperature until he's boiled.. well.. if they didnt want us to know this, we wouldnt. Its just another step in boiling the frog, and I gotta tell ya.. Im seein bubbles down here..

Re:Frog's Almost Done (3, Interesting)

zippthorne (748122) | about 2 years ago | (#40587991)

I don't know if that works for oppression, but I remember reading somewhere that if you actually did the experiment, the frog would jump out if it is actually possible to do (i.e. the pot is small enough, water level, etc)

What's the public policy analogue of jumping out of the pot, though...

Re:Frog's Almost Done (1)

SuperCharlie (1068072) | about 2 years ago | (#40588039)

What's the public policy analogue of jumping out of the pot, though...

That is a good question..

Re:Frog's Almost Done (1)

green1 (322787) | about 2 years ago | (#40588247)

What's the public policy analogue of jumping out of the pot, though...

Emigration.
Problem is that it's getting to the point that it could possibly take more technology than we have currently available to emigrate to a place that is actually "outside of the pot" (ie. a spacecraft capable of taking us somewhere habitable)
Back to the part about "if it is actually possible to do"

Re:Frog's Almost Done (5, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 2 years ago | (#40588363)

Clearly you aren't doing it correctly...

If the frog jumps out of the pot, you taze its amphibian ass, charge it with resisting arrest, zip-tie its limbs and dump it back in the pot.

And if the frog turns out to have a decent lawyer, you lose the tape and plant a dimebag from the evidence locker on it.

Tor discussion forums & DNSCrypt (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588033)

We need an official Tor discussion forum.

I didn't see this issue mentioned in Roger's *latest* notes post, so for now, mature adults should visit and post at one or both of these unofficial tor discussion forums, these tinyurl's will take you to:

** HackBB:
http://www.tinyurl.com/hackbbonion [tinyurl.com]

** Onion Forum 2.0
http://www.tinyurl.com/onionforum2 [tinyurl.com]

Each tinyurl link will take you to a hidden service discussion forum. Tor is required to visit these links, even though they appear to be on the open web, they will lead you to .onion sites.

I know the Tor developers can do better, but how many years are we to wait?

Caution: some topics may be disturbing. You should be eighteen years or older. I recommend you disable images in your browser when viewing these two forums[1] and only enabling them if you are posting a message, but still be careful! Disable javascript and cookies, too.

If you prefer to visit the hidden services directly, bypassing the tinyurl service:

HackBB: (directly)
http://clsvtzwzdgzkjda7.onion/ [clsvtzwzdgzkjda7.onion]

Onion Forum 2.0: (directly)
http://65bgvta7yos3sce5.onion/ [65bgvta7yos3sce5.onion]

The tinyurl links are provided as a simple means of memorizing the hidden services via a link shortening service (tinyurl.com).

[1]: Because any content can be posted! Think 4chan, for example. onionforum2 doesn't appear to be heavily moderated so be aware and take precautions.

----------
DNSCrypt for Linux, Windows, Mac (from opendns.com)

"In the same way the SSL turns HTTP web traffic into HTTPS encrypted Web traffic, DNSCrypt turns regular DNS traffic into encrypted DNS traffic that is secure from eavesdropping and man-in-the-middle attacks. It doesnâ(TM)t require any changes to domain names or how they work, it simply provides a method for securely encrypting communication between our customers and our DNS servers in our data centers. We know that claims alone donâ(TM)t work in the security world, however, so weâ(TM)ve opened up the source to our DNSCrypt code base and itâ(TM)s available on GitHub"

https://www.opendns.com/technology/dnscrypt/ [opendns.com]

- Download the right package for your Linux distribution:
https://blog.opendns.com/2012/02/16/tales-from-the-dnscrypt-linux-rising/ [opendns.com]

https://github.com/opendns/dnscrypt-proxy/blob/master/README.markdown [github.com]
https://github.com/opendns [github.com]
https://blog.opendns.com/2012/05/08/dnscrypt-for-windows-has-arrived/ [opendns.com]
http://techcrunch.com/2011/12/05/dnscrypt-encrypts-your-dns-traffic-because-theres-always-someone-out-to-get-you/ [techcrunch.com]
http://www.h-online.com/security/news/item/DNSCrypt-a-tool-to-encrypt-all-DNS-traffic-1392283.html [h-online.com]
http://blog.opendns.com/2012/02/06/dnscrypt-hackers-wanted/ [opendns.com]
https://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/debian-26/dnscrypt-930439/ [linuxquestions.org]

Someone steals my identity (2, Interesting)

Monkier (607445) | about 2 years ago | (#40588079)

Someone steals my identity (from cards in a wallet robbed from my house) - signs up a bunch of cell phones in my name, then steps out on the bill. The police get me to fill out a form, and I spend hours dealing with 3 different cell companies, and debt collection agency.

Do you think the police checked any cell tower data to find the perpetrator?

Merely a symptom of a wider problem (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588097)

From someone who just went through TSA hell today, this country is done. Not because the TSA stomped all over me after I did something big; rather, because the TSA displayed an amazing level of fascist arrogance at a slight thing. I chuckled when the agent went through my credit cards, individually, in my wallet. He said, "Is something funny?" (in that cop-talk, fascist fashion). I just turned, and went to collect my stuff.

I'm prepared to turn my back on my country, because this is not what I signed up for. I do want the police around - to enforce laws that don't violate the constitution. I don't want them to display a complete fascist power-corruption. I'm scared. I'm truly scared, that this is pre-war Germany, all over again.

This cell carrier thing just reflects the overall sentiment in this country to just go along with illegal government activities. Maybe they're scared too. I certainly didn't stand up to the TSA agent. Should I have? I don't know. But I don't like where this is heading. I'm starting to think that this will lead to a violent revolution Certainly that would be better than slipping into a fascist country, though I think we're already there.

Laws are so broad now that EVERYONE is a criminal. Or, certainly exposed to being prosecuted and convicted, and thrown into jail for decades, though they've done nothing wrong.

Millions of crimes. (5, Insightful)

jcr (53032) | about 2 years ago | (#40588137)

The PATRIOT act doesn't trump the fourth and fifth amendments. Any one of these "requests" that isn't an actual warrant issued by a neutral magistrate is a crime, and every government obedience enforcement operative (I will not call them "law enforcement" officers when they're breaking the law), has participated in depriving people of their civil rights under color of authority, which is a federal crime.

Anyone who votes for either Ruling Party candidate this time around, keep this in mind.

-jcr

Re:Millions of crimes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588409)

You don't need to sign a post, your name is at the top. You are just stating the obvious, why bother? Until some libertarian candidate makes it in this line of pointing out the obvious is just a waste of bits.

Re:Millions of crimes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588597)

The PATRIOT act doesn't trump the fourth and fifth amendments. Any one of these "requests" that isn't an actual warrant issued by a neutral magistrate is a crime, and every government obedience enforcement operative (I will not call them "law enforcement" officers when they're breaking the law), has participated in depriving people of their civil rights under color of authority, which is a federal crime.

Anyone who votes for either Ruling Party candidate this time around, keep this in mind.

-jcr

And anyone who feels that voting is going to solve this massive abuse of power, please feel free to hold your breath until it happens...

Re:Millions of crimes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588901)

Sure, depriving someone of their civil rights under color of authority is a federal crime, but who is going to prosecute it? The best MOST people can hope for, the absolute best outcome mind you, is for the charges to be dropped or for them to be found not guilty. This is for gross violations of civil rights..like the police coming in, executing your entire family, conducing a warrantless search without probable cause, then making you confess to a laundry list of crimes under threat of immediate execution. Your best hope is to be let go. To recoup actual real damages is simply a pipe dream and indicative of heavy drug use (or having no clue of how reality works). Most judges would look out for their own budgets and misconduct on the part of police or prosecution or justice system is damn near impossible to prove. Funny how that works..to prove someone had intent to sell drugs all you have to do is prove that they have more drugs on them than an average user would use in one sitting..but to prove misconduct of the judicial system you need a written and videotaped confession showing that they were merely out to fuck someone over no matter what the personal cost or the cost to the state because you don't like them.

Re:Millions of crimes. (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | about 2 years ago | (#40589449)

Calm down, dear. Asking isn't a crime, and neither is telling, absent some law to prevent it.

1/2 of these are Mitnick and friends (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588435)

Having just read Ghost in the wires I feel I can expertly say that at least 1/2 of these requests are made by hackers like Kevin Mitnick,
many of them working for PIs That is what happens when you don't require court orders or any REAL security at all,

What is a court order? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588507)

The question may sound a bit naive, but what is a court order other than a form of routine rubberstamping by some low paid pot-bellied DMV style clerk?

makes sense (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588565)

if i had the money, i'd want the very best blond-slim gens for my privat island Olympic pool in the pacific, non?
think of "cell phone tracking" as a search-f.book for the very rich.

I have the solution .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588569)

"I'm sorry, your data request could not be connected. Please check the owner and try again"

What a post!! (-1, Flamebait)

Nila1936 (2298596) | about 2 years ago | (#40588999)

Anyone who votes for either Ruling Party candidate this time around, keep this in mind. http://bit.ly/J4HVH6 [bit.ly]

When I walked in (-1, Offtopic)

zibing (2638317) | about 2 years ago | (#40589173)

Replica Ray Ban sunglasses [replicaray...es3025.com] Wayfarer (hikers) series, since 1952, every year change. All the stars love it. More compared to the mystery of the kind of sparkling stars, were witty and playful, more particularly interesting and humane.

This year it launched the New York subway map, including flowers design and stripe texture, the base of color is cool color and suggestive such as color of set limit to style.

Audrey Hepburn in the morning walk, she wears Ray-Ban.

Transfer two information: the first, how much Tiffany shine, across the dark glasses can see clearly; second, was very popular Ray Ban sunglasses 3025 [replicaray...es3025.com] Wayfarer, two brands to Freemasonry after engaging in a cooperative Memorial section," pay tribute to Audrey Hepburn" is also quite good; third, Audrey Hepburn's face is the size of the palm should be worthy of the name, can cover most of his face, great!

On the Wayfarer, we know not less.

In addition to block the sun, they can best use face size measurement. From Hepburn to Olsen sisters, their heads are smaller than me about the circle. It's the sense of tragedy.

But, is not enough to have an invincible face, is to ensure that the facial features clear, at least tube straight nose.

Or cheeks meat toot to frame a" blind Bing" like sunglasses, please imagine the effect.

Of course, we cannot deny the Wayfarer decorative effect.

Especially in the mix building a style restoring ancient ways, absolute can wish you a hand, instantly back to the 50s.

But with round hat as well, and will not take.

As for what I wear ... ... Even if, face is not wrong, zoom out treasure can never forgive. However, occasionally to take it when the hair is very good, such as when the hair tied up, put it on his head, than the general big Ray Ban sunglasses sale [replicaray...es3025.com] come right.

Large numbers (1)

jklovanc (1603149) | about 2 years ago | (#40589723)

Large number look great and add punch to articles. The issue is when one can break them down to a realistic level.
1.3 million requests sounds like a big number but so does 327,577,529 which is the number of cellular phones used in the US. That means that 0.4% Of the cellular phones in the US were inquired about through cellular carriers. Considering the number of police investigations in the US I would call that a very small number.
It also depends on how the requests come through. Here are some instances where separate requests may need to be done;
1. Complete phone history,
2. Call logs,
3. Voice mail recordings,
4. SMS
5. Location,
6, Time periods, maybe by day, week month, years
7. Browsing history

There may need to be quite a few requests to get all the information an investigation needs.

Even 230 requests in a day is not that much work. Say there was a section that dealt with police requests that had 10 people in it. Say 6 hours productive work. That would be about 15 minutes per request. That should be enough time to deal with a request if the systems are set up properly.

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