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In-Flight Wi-Fi Provider Going Above and Beyond To Help Feds Spy

Soulskill posted about 4 months ago | from the come-fly-with-the-friendly-spies dept.

Privacy 78

An anonymous reader sends in a report from Wired that GoGo, a company the provides in-flight Wi-Fi access to airline passengers, seems to be making every effort to assist law enforcement agencies with wiretaps. From the article: "Gogo and others that provide Wi-Fi aboard aircraft must follow the same wiretap provisions that require telecoms and terrestrial ISPs to assist U.S. law enforcement and the NSA in tracking users when so ordered. But they may be doing more than the law requires. According to a letter (PDF) Gogo submitted to the Federal Communications Commission, the company voluntarily exceeded the requirements of the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act, or CALEA, by adding capabilities to its service at the request of law enforcement. The revelation alarms civil liberties groups, which say companies should not be cutting deals with the government that may enhance the ability to monitor or track users."

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But... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46708641)

...terrorism!

Re:But... (4, Insightful)

sabri (584428) | about 4 months ago | (#46709207)

...terrorism!

No, Lawful Intercept.

Don't shoot the company that is complying with government wishes. When the FBI knocks on a CEO's door and says "you need to do this and this", the CEO will have little choice but to comply. Yes, in theory he may refuse an order if it is not 100% a requirement per the law, but that will only make his own life difficult. Remember that it is the same government that hands out licenses for the CEO's business, and the same government that collects that CEO's taxes. The government can make life very, very difficult for the CEO, even while staying within the boundaries of the law (tax audits, anyone?).

When focusing on a single company, you're losing sight of the bigger picture. The problem is that the government has little regard for the end-user's privacy, and sacrifices civil liberties in the name of security. It is the government that needs a slap on the hand, not the company that has been "exposed" (but I do agree that morally, the company is on the wrong side in history).

Re:But... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46709725)

I think you may be ignoring the "above and beyond" part of the story.

Read the letter. (1)

Camael (1048726) | about 4 months ago | (#46711977)

Let me break it down.

The letter is from Gogo LLC to the Federal Communications Commission. In the letter, Gogo was trying to persuade the FCC that it was unnecessary for the FCC to specify a mandatory list of capabilities that Gogo would have to implement as a condition for their license. This mandatory list is being pushed for by the U.S.Department of Justice, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the U.S.Department of Homeland Security. Gogo's argument is that it was unnecessary because, in their own words :-

Gogo worked with federal agencies to reach agreement regarding a set of additional capabilities to accommodate law enforcement interests. Gogo then implemented those functionalities into its system design.

What I see here is a company trying to get it's business off the ground and fighting not to be saddled by mandatory government rules violating the privacy of its customers. Did they bend over backwards to try and "accommodate" the spy agencies? Undoubtedly, yes. But by far the larger portion of the blame has to rest with the government spy agencies who made it impossible to do business unless you play ball with them.

Re:Read the letter. (1)

Mister Liberty (769145) | about 4 months ago | (#46716771)

The government -- that is you.

Re:But... (4, Interesting)

cavreader (1903280) | about 4 months ago | (#46709755)

I don't think the problem is about corporations providing requested information to law enforcement. The problem is more about making sure there is a valid warrant before handing over the requested data. Court provided warrants have been a crucial and well litigated part of US law enforcement and are used to provide a level of protection that satisfies the requirements under the 4th Amendment. It's never been a perfect system but it is what it is.However the FISA warrants introduce a gigantic loophole into the entire process. People are just supposed to "trust" the government which is an absurd notion in the extreme. FISA warrants are basically requests for information that can be used to obtain a regular court approved search warrant. Any information collected using a FISA warrant can be presented to the court when trying to obtain a normal warrant but none of the information collected under a FISA warrant can be used in court against a defendant.

Re:But... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46718719)

In short you're saying take it like a bitch.

And? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46708647)

And yet nothing will happen to them but have some impotent nerd rage flung at them.

Re:And? (3, Interesting)

bob_super (3391281) | about 4 months ago | (#46709445)

Actually, the people with enough disposable cash to use in-flight internet are the most likely to have an impact if they protest being spied on.

Spy vs Spy vs Spy (3, Funny)

ackthpt (218170) | about 4 months ago | (#46708681)

Where's Antonio Prohias when you need him?

The feds can have the data from my last flight... (1, Insightful)

damn_registrars (1103043) | about 4 months ago | (#46708685)

The last time I used gogoinflight I was using it to search for and download freely available academic papers for work. I know I should be appalled at them giving up the data, but I wouldn't use a service like that for anything that I would be worried about the feds looking in on.

Re:The feds can have the data from my last flight. (4, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | about 4 months ago | (#46708775)

I have OpenVPN installed on my portable devices, and it connects back to my VPN server, using my own CA. I have the devices set to use the VPN server as the gateway so when I'm doing any kind of data retrieval that I want to keep confidential, it's going through an encrypted tunnel. Yes, it does slow things down a bit, but I find most public WiFi sucks pretty serious donkey balls anyways.

Nothing is 100% secure, but I pretty much treat any public network; airport, airplane, hotel, restaurant, or the like as hostile territory.

Re:The feds can have the data from my last flight. (4, Interesting)

sexconker (1179573) | about 4 months ago | (#46708891)

I have OpenVPN installed on my portable devices, and it connects back to my VPN server, using my own CA. I have the devices set to use the VPN server as the gateway so when I'm doing any kind of data retrieval that I want to keep confidential, it's going through an encrypted tunnel. Yes, it does slow things down a bit, but I find most public WiFi sucks pretty serious donkey balls anyways.

Nothing is 100% secure, but I pretty much treat any public network; airport, airplane, hotel, restaurant, or the like as hostile territory.

That's all pointless. They've tapped your home connection too. Your ISP gives them anything they want on a silver platter.

Re:The feds can have the data from my last flight. (2)

LookIntoTheFuture (3480731) | about 4 months ago | (#46710245)

I have OpenVPN installed on my portable devices, and it connects back to my VPN server, using my own CA. I have the devices set to use the VPN server as the gateway so when I'm doing any kind of data retrieval that I want to keep confidential, it's going through an encrypted tunnel. Yes, it does slow things down a bit, but I find most public WiFi sucks pretty serious donkey balls anyways.

Nothing is 100% secure, but I pretty much treat any public network; airport, airplane, hotel, restaurant, or the like as hostile territory.

That's all pointless. They've tapped your home connection too. Your ISP gives them anything they want on a silver platter.

I wouldn't say pointless. He's protected from public wifi that is easily monitored/manipulated by anybody with physical access to it.

Re:The feds can have the data from my last flight. (2)

BitZtream (692029) | about 4 months ago | (#46712445)

Yes, protected from a few hops ... at which point it then turns around and goes right back out on the public internet ... which can be easily monitored/manipulated by anybody with physical, virtual, remote or local access to it.

Re:The feds can have the data from my last flight. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46710315)

Tapping us?

http://media3.giphy.com/media/... [giphy.com]

pfft. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46709179)

Um, what does your home vpn server connect to to mr. wizard? Unless you run your own ISP I don't see how this really matters unless you're only worried about joe schmo hacker out in the real world.

Re:The feds can have the data from my last flight. (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 4 months ago | (#46708963)

These days a VPN is pretty much basic protection, like a firewall was 10 years ago. Particularly if you travel or use public wifi, but even at home/work.

Re:The feds can have the data from my last flight. (5, Insightful)

Guppy (12314) | about 4 months ago | (#46708987)

The last time I used gogoinflight I was using it to search for and download freely available academic papers for work. I know I should be appalled at them giving up the data, but I wouldn't use a service like that for anything that I would be worried about the feds looking in on.

In my case, being a medical student -- what if I happen to be studying infectious diseases at the moment? Maybe some novel Influenza strains, or bacterial antibiotic resistance profiles, or epidemiological models of disease spread? Possibly even actual bio-terrorism agents, as these were a pretty big item on my board exams (probably someone at the federal level pushed the NBME/NBOME to emphasize them, there was way too much given the relative clinical utility of the topic).

My colleagues would find those topics perfectly normal and usual items of study, but I'd hate to end up on a watch list because MUH TERRORISM.

Re:The feds can have the data from my last flight. (2)

Technician (215283) | about 4 months ago | (#46710531)

1 back up your drive.
2 encrypt your back up drive
3 ship the drive to your destination
4 wipe your drive with a clean install, don't encrypt it.
5 fly and enjoy something from a ripped DVD No need to set off alams with encryption or shady content.
6 after passing security with a sanitized drive, arrive and pick up your real data.

Yeah very nice (2)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46711581)

All that trouble because stupid fearfull people might put you on a no fly list for doing your god damn job? Nice country. Great people. Land of the free.

Re:The feds can have the data from my last flight. (5, Interesting)

ubergeek2009 (1475007) | about 4 months ago | (#46710533)

Agreed. I'm an engineering student and I'm the head of one of my student competitions which happens to involve building a high powered rocket. I had to travel on the day of an important meeting for the competition and was forced to leave the task to a rather junior member of the team. I couldn't check in on one of team members when I was in either airport because I was afraid of being labeled as a terrorist and end up in an interrogation room because I was discussing basic rocketry with a team member.

Re:The feds can have the data from my last flight. (1)

Nikker (749551) | about 4 months ago | (#46712003)

It's not like an actual terrorist would be searching the net on directions of use and lab reports.

Re:The feds can have the data from my last flight. (1)

coolsnowmen (695297) | about 4 months ago | (#46725755)

I feel like you haven't thought this through. The problem isn't you doing it. Because if the fed's knock on your door and say, "GIVE ME ONE GOOD REASON YOU WERE LOOKING AT THIS VIRUS!". You can say, it is my job. Conversation over. But, if I did it, because I find them interesting, _I_ have no legitimate reason to, so I'm a potential terrorist.

not surprised... (1)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about 4 months ago | (#46708693)

not surprised, considering we live in the optomicon. everybody likes to exclaim "1984!" but I read the book recently and don't think it applies much. In terms of the technical invasion of privacy it is accurate, but I don't think the remaining brainwash / control aspects of the totalitarian govt are realistic.

The other thing that's accurate is the use of endless warfare to put the population into defensive mode. Think of the airports and their "status yellow/orange" bs that GWB was shown to manipulate during his re-election.

You know what will prevent this sort of thing in America? Everybody wants to be part of the 1%. And as long as there is an upwardly mobile class, there will be demand for change and new opportunities. One class will never be able to cement control over the other.

Re:not surprised... (3, Informative)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 4 months ago | (#46708737)

not surprised, considering we live in the optomicon.

I think you mean panopticon. [wikipedia.org]

Re:not surprised... (1)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about 4 months ago | (#46711439)

Then what's an optomicon?

Re:not surprised... (1)

Johann Lau (1040920) | about 4 months ago | (#46711591)

A made up word from what I can tell.

Re:not surprised... (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 4 months ago | (#46713005)

Then what's an optomicon?

Yo momma.

Sorry, couldn't help myself.

Re:not surprised... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46708873)

You are wrong. Remember that in 1984, Winston is not a regular person (Prole), he is a member of the Outer Party.
The Proles have more freedoms than outer party members because they are no threat. As a consequence, they can express themselves a lot more freely, engage in recreational sex, and a lot of other things that Winston cannot.
You really should think of 1984 as a book about someone trying to enter politics or a very junior member of the house / senate. It's there that obedience is enforced.

There is speculation right now that chief justice Roberts was blackmailed into supporting Obamacare and rewrote his decision the night before.
Snowden mentioned his video call to the European Parliament that the NSA was collecting porn browsing habits on conservatives for the purpose of discrediting them with their followers.

Information is weapon. And just because you're not being bludgeoned by such a weapon, doesn't mean nobody else is.
And you wonder why you don't have good candidates...
Well, I'm sure having a thoroughly vetted authoritarian scumbag in charge, doesn't affect you, right? - or so I keep being told.

Re:not surprised... (1)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about 4 months ago | (#46709219)

There is speculation right now that chief justice Roberts was blackmailed into supporting Obamacare and rewrote his decision the night before.

I speculate that Justice Roberts is an alien and Obama is a hologram. have you ever shaken his hand? Do you know somebody first-hand who has shaken his hand? I didn't think so.

Re:not surprised... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46712395)

What are you ten years old? Jesus the level of "discourse" here has fallen like a fucking stone.

The AC was talking about a serious potential problem with actual evidentiary roots, showing that our democracy might be in peril, but you go ahead an act like a moron, that'll help.

Re:not surprised... (1)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about 4 months ago | (#46721277)

agreed that there are serious problems, but making wild speculations and accusations just makes things worse. at least that's what my invisible unicorn told me.

Re:not surprised... (2)

nurb432 (527695) | about 4 months ago | (#46709023)

but I don't think the remaining brainwash / control aspects of the totalitarian govt are realistic.

Then you are not paying attention. its here, today. Perhaps not as overly as in the book, but it is happening every day.

Everybody wants to be part of the 1%.

Clearly that is not the case anymore. Too many people are willing to live on handouts from the government, using the funds from the rest of us, and not aspire to be 'better'..

Re:not surprised... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46709391)

Social Engineering Brainwashing

Please attempt to dispute this.

Re:not surprised... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46709419)

Edit: Social Engineering (does not equal) Brainwashing

Re:not surprised... (1)

sjames (1099) | about 4 months ago | (#46711051)

OH yeah, everybody 'living on handouts' is so damned happy!

Have you actually looked in to that at all or did you just swallow the GOP soundbites whole?

So which handouts are those that people are living off of?

Re:not surprised... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46716025)

seriously: IF those welfare 'handouts' are so lucrative, then the poster sure is an idiot for not getting in on *that* golden parachute...
or,
*maybe* its not all peaches and cream when you are on foodstamps and welfare...
maybe...

shit, if you counted the ENTIRETY of food stamps and welfare payments as being 100% fraudulent, it would be a milli-drop in the bucket compared to the REAL fraudulent waste in any ONE sector of either the military industrial komplex, farm subsidies, businesses avoiding taxes, drug war, bankster fraud, foreign aid, etc, etc, etc...
fucking cruel, conservatard assholes will let RICH PUKES RIP US ALL OFF FOR TRILLIONS AND CRASH THE WORLD'S ECONOMY, and not blink an eye; but let ONE welfare fraud rip us off for a couple thousand, and *THAT* is the end of civilized society...
you dingleberries simply can't tell you're looking through the wrong end of the telescope, can you ? ? ?

Re:not surprised... (2)

sjames (1099) | about 4 months ago | (#46711031)

Don't be so sure about the brainwashing aspect. Haven't you noticed the way they try to redefine words like torture to exclude whatever they have done? The way the internal passport/national ID card was redefined as an 'enhanced drivers license'? How the bill that pisses all over everything the country stands for is called the Patriot act?

Re:not surprised... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46711963)

But we've always been at war with Eastasia^H^H^H^H^H^H^H terrorists... or was it drugs... or Afghanistan, it was something, wasn't it? And we keep winning! Go America!

Captcha; disobey :)

USA and North Korea (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46708695)

What do you expect from communist regimes like USA or North Korea. They have similar mentality. Many US agencies go for training to North Korea.
On 4th of July Americans wave the flag and sing "North Korea our beloved nation join us we love you and want you with us"

Re:USA and North Korea (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46708751)

Oh please. The US is very free except for the parts of the government that are ruled by Republicans. Of course, that is every bit of every government from city to county to state to federal. Even here in Seattle, the Republicans have managed to destroy mass transit, most social programs, sidewalk upgrades, and LGBT freedom. They rule this city with an iron fist. So we're free except for the parts of our lives that are controlled by Republicans which is all of it.

Re:USA and North Korea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46709115)

The US is very free except for the parts of the government that are ruled by Republicans.

Funny, that. The last time I was sexually molested at an airport, the Democrats were fully in power.

Re:USA and North Korea (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46709181)

Are you talking about the TSA? The Bush junta created the TSA and continues to force them upon us.

Re:USA and North Korea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46709221)

There's other times.....?

You might have a different "problem" alltogether.... Mr "victim".

Take a break people! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46708797)

While it would be nice to have Internet access on a domestic US flight, I find it's a nice break to not have it. Things I can do 'offline' are, read, nap, converse with strangers sitting next to me, admire the view from the window, hit on the cute female flight attendant, sketch... If you need to be connected for business that's one thing. For 90% of people on planes, that probably isn't that case!

Now, Internet on international flights? Absolutely!

Take a moment and unplug, people! It will do you some good!

International flights (1)

DoofusOfDeath (636671) | about 4 months ago | (#46708815)

So what happens when they fly over countries with proper privacy regulations? Hopefully those countries will issue INTERPOL warrants for the company executives.

Re:International flights (1)

jonwil (467024) | about 4 months ago | (#46708903)

Last I checked, no international flights are using Gogo.

Re:International flights (3, Informative)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | about 4 months ago | (#46709155)

GoGo is provided by a company called Aircell, out of Itasca, IL. They rely on a network of ~400 AT&T cell tower locations to provide connectivity (its all interconnected over MPLS). Row 44 is a competitor, and they use satellite connectivity, and hence can provide coverage over the ocean or international countries.

Not all relevant info, but thought I'd throw it out there.

Re:International flights (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46709885)

Not quite. AirCell/GoGo has approx. 250 land-based sites, co-located with just about every carrier in the US, to cover most of the lower-48. AirCell uses dual-mode radios, which also uses satellite, whenever there is no/low signal from the ground sites for international flight and areas with limited coverage from the ground.

Re:International flights (1)

elbonia (2452474) | about 4 months ago | (#46709071)

During flight the law [un.org] inside an aircraft is genrally of the country of registration [wikipedia.org] . So if these flights are on planes registered to the United States INTERPOL has no authority.

Re:International flights (1)

sjames (1099) | about 4 months ago | (#46711059)

But they better be sure to shut down the connectivity before touchdown.

Re:International flights (1)

elbonia (2452474) | about 4 months ago | (#46722265)

GoGo and other flight internet services aren't allowed to work at altitudes below 10000 ft.

Sounds good for GoGo (4, Insightful)

Chelloveck (14643) | about 4 months ago | (#46708829)

Can't say I blame them. What's the downside for GoGo? They're not going to lose any revenue over this. They have monopoly control over a captive audience that literally can't go elsewhere for service. On the other hand, the airline industry is already deeply, deeply in bed with law enforcement. When it comes time to get a franchise as an in-flight provider I expect that an endorsement by the TLAs is only going to work in GoGo's favor.

It'd be nice if they'd keep their hands off our packets, but who are we kidding? Unless all network providers suddenly get regulated as common carriers that's just not going to happen. Whether you're in the air, in Starbucks, or leeching wi-fi from your next-door neighbor you have to assume that your packets are being logged and analyzed.

Give them a downside (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46708969)

They need a nice good old fashioned class-action lawsuit to brighten up their day, they need to get sued for violating privacy and acting as enablers of illegal law enforcement activity. US Congress may well give them retroactive immunity, they are free to show their true colors.

Abstinence (2)

rsborg (111459) | about 4 months ago | (#46708997)

Can't say I blame them. What's the downside for GoGo?

As I work with secured customer data, knowing that I'm possibly getting MITM'd sounds like a likelihood I won't be able to use GoGo (now I have to go and verify if it's ok). So abstinence is always an option, despite me being gogo's captive.

Re:Abstinence (1)

Richy_T (111409) | about 4 months ago | (#46709703)

You didn't know you were possibly getting MITM'd anyway? If you're working with secure customer data, you should be using a VPN as a matter of course.

Hoping to catch procrastinating terrorists? (4, Funny)

Applehu Akbar (2968043) | about 4 months ago | (#46708867)

As if any actual NSA target of interest is going to google bomb-making information, email other members of their sleeper cell, or update their subscription to Inspire magazine while actually ON a flight.

Re:Hoping to catch procrastinating terrorists? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46709231)

As if any actual NSA target of interest is going to google bomb-making information, email other members of their sleeper cell, or update their subscription to Inspire magazine while actually ON a flight.

Maybe dumb terrorists coordinating a take over of a flight. Dumb, because you don't need an internet connection to make an ad-hock network.

Re:Hoping to catch procrastinating terrorists? (1)

bob_super (3391281) | about 4 months ago | (#46709435)

At least one was eager to find out "how to light my wet shoe/underwear bomb"
The problem is that he first needed the answer to "how do I fend off a hundred angry passengers?", which is harder to type than he expected.

Re:Hoping to catch procrastinating terrorists? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46709857)

Actually, you should. If forty people on every flight are googling "How to light my bomb" they'll soon see how useless their mass surveillance is.

AC

Re:Hoping to catch procrastinating terrorists? (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 4 months ago | (#46712519)

The NSA isn't that interested in terrorists, they prefer industrial espionage and politically motivated spying. Since a lot of business people and politically interesting people fly it makes sense to bug aircraft.

civil liberties? what's that? (1)

onproton (3434437) | about 4 months ago | (#46708945)

After going through airport security I'm pretty sure everybody already assumes privacy is up in the air

Re:civil liberties? what's that? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46709007)

After going through airport security I'm pretty sure everybody already assumes privacy is up in the air

I'm not quite sure why anyone expects privacy on the Internet in general, because... that's not how it works, but expecting it on a free WiFi network, that's a special kind of stupid.

serves them right (-1, Troll)

nurb432 (527695) | about 4 months ago | (#46709009)

If you use public WiFi without ssh/vpn/tor/etc then you deserve to be spied on.

Re:serves them right (1)

geekmux (1040042) | about 4 months ago | (#46709131)

If you use public WiFi without ssh/vpn/tor/etc then you deserve to be spied on.

Oh, you mean we're only spied on when using public WiFi hotspots?

Boy that's a relief. For a minute there I thought hundreds of millions of people were overreacting to the fact that private or public doesn't really fucking matter anymore...

Re:serves them right (1)

nurb432 (527695) | about 4 months ago | (#46709973)

Oh, you mean we're only spied on when using public WiFi hotspots?

No, that isn't what i said. Try learning some reading comprehension, sarcastic pinhead.

Re:serves them right (1)

geekmux (1040042) | about 4 months ago | (#46712949)

Oh, you mean we're only spied on when using public WiFi hotspots?

No, that isn't what i said. Try learning some reading comprehension, sarcastic pinhead.

Ah yes, you're right. My bad. Apparently you only need to use encryption on public WiFi hotspots. Obviously you're perfectly secure behind private ones and have little or no need.

Yup, got it. Comprehension wizard you are.

CAPTCHA (3, Interesting)

KagatoLNX (141673) | about 4 months ago | (#46709011)

Interestingly, the article says that, at the request of law enforcement, they added CAPTCHA support. The article then goes on to say that this must be a deception because they used a plural, it "doesn't make sense", etc.

Actually, it makes a lot of sense. How is every IED detonated these days? Cell phone. Buy a cheap, anonymous phone, wire it up, and call it to detonate it. Wifi that wasn't resistant to automated signup would make this trivial. They could just sign up with an anonymous phone and pre-paid Visa. Then, when it's in the air, *BOOM*

It also makes a lot of sense that they don't want to talk about it. Don't want to give people ideas.

Feds are in the wrong here, not anyone else. (1)

geekmux (1040042) | about 4 months ago | (#46709081)

"by adding capabilities to its service at the request of law enforcement. The revelation alarms civil liberties groups, which say companies should not be cutting deals with the government that may enhance the ability to monitor or track users."

Uh, companies should not be cutting deals?

That is absolutely the wrong mentality to have here.

How about we address the fact that law enforcement likely knowingly asked for capabilities that exceed their legal purvey. And they knew damn well those requests would likely be granted only due to their federal standing and considerable influence, which again is an abuse of power.

Why in the hell this appears to be pointing blame solely at the companies here is beyond me. Sure, they're complacent, but certainly not the real problem.

Article is FUD. (3, Funny)

mythosaz (572040) | about 4 months ago | (#46709133)

While this won't make the tinfoil-hat people happy, there's almost nothing here.

The PDF is pretty harmless, and the Wired article is 100% speculative bullshit.

CALEA was the law when they built their system, so they built their system to support it. Saying things like "in close conjunction with law enforcement" is just flowery wording to say they made a phone call or two. The PDF is the most boring "meets or exceeds expectations" paper I've ever read.

Nolan, asked about those statements, said, “Despite what the person said in 2009, what I can tell you today and what the truth is today is that we adhere to CALEA and we do everything in conjunction with what law enforcement has asked us to do.” He added that, “There is no ‘super CALEA’ capability. Our capabilities and what we adhere to are exactly what any communications provider, including on the ground networks, adhere to when they abide by CALEA. Nothing more and nothing less.

Re:Article is FUD. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46709887)

Nolan, asked about those statements, said, “Despite what the person said in 2009, what I can tell you today and what the truth is today is that we adhere to CALEA and we do everything in conjunction with what law enforcement has asked us to do.” He added that, “There is no ‘super CALEA’ capability. Our capabilities and what we adhere to are exactly what any communications provider, including on the ground networks, adhere to when they abide by CALEA. Nothing more and nothing less.

And just exactly what is that, my friend? Just what has law enforcement asked you to do? And are you allowed to tell me?

Thought not. AC

Who cares? (1)

Patent Lover (779809) | about 4 months ago | (#46709873)

If you pay for gogo inflight you're basically paying for 28.8k circa 1990 service. Quite nestalgic but not exactly a hot bed of terrorist activity.

How dumb. (3, Interesting)

stonebit (2776195) | about 4 months ago | (#46710401)

I work for an ISP that provides in air wifi wholesale to the likes of the goofy companies that sell it in air. We have traffic shapers. If you want to control connections of people in air, you must have traffic shapers. Traffic shapers in and of themselves massively report (by default) on the activity and log tonnes of data about each person connected. This is done for many reasons. Mostly to study and trend behaviour on one's network. CALEA requires a small subset of the reporting AND taps be in place. We also have taps to aid troubleshooting the network. If CALEA has done anything, it's required us to get more taps and put them in more places. We wanted them there to begin with; it's just easier to approve the hundreds of millions in taps if it's 'for CALEA' and thus a requirement.

Re:How dumb. (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about 4 months ago | (#46712469)

Are you a secretary at an ISP? You haven't provided any actual REAL reasons to use traffic shapers at all. There are reasons, but you clearly don't know what they are.

Mafia (1)

PC_THE_GREAT (893738) | about 4 months ago | (#46711575)

The Government seems to become more and more of a mafia, so why continue ranting but still keeping the system the same?

We have enough resources and technology to make a system whereby the entire nation gets to vote/decide on any small decision that gets taken. We can even add a weightage system to it so as experts in the field's opinion get more value.

It is about time that we eliminate that form of central decision making, which instead of working for the people, are indulging into spying on them, under the pretense that it is for your own good.

I think they should merge with a wall street bank (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46712135)

Then they could make money by selling your internet access data to the government AND selling your trades to high frequency trading firms. Two birds One Stone.

This deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46713019)

flies in the face of conventional wisdom.

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