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U.S. Government Demands ISP Data Retention

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the put-up-or-shut-up dept.

355

dlc3007 writes to mention an article in the New York Times discussing data privacy. The article expands on the U.S. Government's 'request' last Friday at a meeting between Robert S. Mueller III, Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales, and the executives of several Internet Service Providers. The ISPs were required to retain data on users, for trials if subpoenaed. Right now they're asking companies to do this. The threat is that, if they don't comply, legislation will follow. From the article: "The Justice Department is not asking the Internet companies to give it data about users, but rather to retain information that could be subpoenaed through existing laws and procedures, Mr. Roehrkasse said. While initial proposals were vague, executives from companies that attended the meeting said they gathered that the department was interested in records that would allow them to identify which individuals visited certain Web sites and possibly conducted searches using certain terms." We originally covered this last Sunday, but more details have been released on the meeting since then.

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Working Clicky (5, Informative)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453289)

Here is a working link to the story [nytimes.com] . Please use the RSS feed from newspapers when submitting stories!

How do you do this? Go to the RSS [nytimes.com] feed page and select the category your article appeared in. Then do a search for the title and pull the link that declares it to be an RSS user. It's that simple!

I don't think this is morally wrong as you're going to their site and you're still getting advertisements. Slashdot is really just a hand selected RSS feed so we might as well use RSS credentials. It saves us the time of registering and it saves the site admins some wasted space & e-mail traffic due to shill registrations.

Article Text (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453408)

U.S. Wants Companies to Keep Web Usage Records

By SAUL HANSELL and ERIC LICHTBLAU
Published: June 2, 2006

The Justice Department is asking Internet companies to keep records on the Web-surfing activities of their customers to aid law enforcement, and may propose legislation to force them to do so.

The director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Robert S. Mueller III, and Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales held a meeting in Washington last Friday where they offered a general proposal on record-keeping to a group of senior executives from Internet companies, said Brian Roehrkasse, a spokesman for the department. The meeting included representatives from America Online, Microsoft, Google, Verizon and Comcast.

The attorney general has appointed a task force of department officials to explore the issue, and that group is holding another meeting with a broader group of Internet executives today, Mr. Roehrkasse said. The department also met yesterday with a group of privacy experts.

The Justice Department is not asking the Internet companies to give it data about users, but rather to retain information that could be subpoenaed through existing laws and procedures, Mr. Roehrkasse said.

While initial proposals were vague, executives from companies that attended the meeting said they gathered that the department was interested in records that would allow them to identify which individuals visited certain Web sites and possibly conducted searches using certain terms.

It also wants the Internet companies to retain records about whom their users exchange e-mail with, but not the contents of e-mail messages, the executives said. The executives spoke on the condition that they not be identified because they did not want to offend the Justice Department.

The proposal and the initial meeting were first reported by USA Today and CNet News.com.

The department proposed that the records be retained for as long as two years. Most Internet companies discard such records after a few weeks or months.In its current proposal, the department appears to be trying to determine whether Internet companies will voluntarily agree to keep certain information or if it will need to seek legislation to require them to do so.

The request comes as the government has been trying to extend its power to review electronic communications in several ways. The New York Times reported in December that the National Security Agency had gained access to phone and e-mail traffic with the cooperation of telecommunications companies, and USA Today reported last month that the agency had collected telephone calling records. The Justice Department has subpoenaed information on Internet search patterns -- but not the searches of individuals -- as it tries to defend a law meant to protect children from pornography.

In a speech in April, Mr. Gonzales said that investigations into child pornography had been hampered because Internet companies had not always kept records that would help prosecutors identify people who traded in illegal images.

"The investigation and prosecution of child predators depends critically on the availability of evidence that is often in the hands of Internet service providers," Mr. Gonzales said in remarks at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in Alexandria, Va. "This evidence will be available for us to use only if the providers retain the records for a reasonable amount of time," he said.

An executive of one Internet provider that was represented at the first meeting said Mr. Gonzales began the discussion by showing slides of child pornography from the Internet. But later, one participant asked Mr. Mueller why he was interested in the Internet records. The executive said Mr. Mueller's reply was, "We want this for terrorism."

At the meeting with privacy experts yesterday, Justice Department officials focused on wanting to retain the records for use in child pornography and terrorism investigations. But they also talked of their value in investigating other crimes like intellectual property theft and fraud, said Marc Rotenberg, executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center in Washington, who attended the session.

"It was clear that they would go beyond kiddie porn and terrorism and use it for general law enforcement," Mr. Rotenberg said.

Kate Dean, the executive director of the United States Internet Service Provider Association, a trade group, said: "When they said they were talking about child pornography, we spent a lot of time developing proposals for what could be done. Now they are talking about a whole different ball of wax."

At the meeting with privacy groups, officials sought to assuage concerns that the retention of the records could compromise the privacy of Americans. But Mr. Rotenberg said he left with lingering concerns.

"This is a sharp departure from current practice," he said. "Data retention is an open-ended obligation to retain all information on all customers for all purposes, and from a traditional Fourth Amendment perspective, that really turns things upside down."

Executives of several Internet companies that participated in the first meeting said the department's initial proposals seemed expensive and unwieldy.

At the meeting scheduled for today with executives of Internet access companies, Justice Department officials plan to go into more detail about what types of records they would like to see retained and for how long, said a Justice Department official who spoke on condition of anonymity. "It will be much more nuts-and-bolts discussions," he said, adding that the department would stop short of offering formal proposals.

Appeals to Emotion. (4, Insightful)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453297)

From TFA:
In its current proposal, the department appears to be trying to determine whether Internet companies will voluntarily agree to keep certain information or if it will need to seek legislation to require them to do so.
Translation: Will we have to ram another law through Congress to make this happen, or can we achieve the same results through good old-fashioned coercion and intimidation? After all, if we have to pass a law, then we'll be constrained by the law's wording...but if we 'persuade' the Internet companies to retin this data for us 'voluntarily', then we can act without restraint or oversight...after all, it is 'voluntary'...

So tell me again....why do the Internet companies have to retain so much data?

From TFA (emphasis mine):
"The investigation and prosecution of child predators depends critically on the availability of evidence that is often in the hands of Internet service providers," Mr. Gonzales said in remarks at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in Alexandria, Va. "This evidence will be available for us to use only if the providers retain the records for a reasonable amount of time," he said.
Ah yes...yet another shameless use of the 'Lovejoy Gambit'. If you oppose this data retention, you must hate children. You don't hate children, do you?

And once more from TFA:
An executive of one Internet provider that was represented at the first meeting said Mr. Gonzales began the discussion by showing slides of child pornography from the Internet. But later, one participant asked Mr. Mueller why he was interested in the Internet records. The executive said Mr. Mueller's reply was, "We want this for terrorism."
And we segue straight from the 'Lovejoy Gambit' to the '9/11 bloody shirt'. How relentlesly predictable.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453363)

The executive said Mr. Mueller's reply was, "We want this for terrorism."

At least he told the truth, perhaps though he should have lied better and said "We want this to *fight* terrorism."

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

sperdich (942787) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453579)

Ja!!! Excellent observation! You are right. I preffer not to be lied. http://perdichizzi.com.ar/ [perdichizzi.com.ar]

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (-1, Troll)

JonTurner (178845) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453379)

They're asking this data be retained so that **IF A COURT ORDERED SUBPOENA IS ISSUED** the information will be available. Worried by that? It's quite simple, really. Don't prey on children and don't plan terrorist acts and you'll be fine.
If you don't trust the courts to work properly, then your issue is much bigger than this request/legislation.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453444)

Hey, I can't understand you. There's a huge gov't cock blocking up your throat.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453470)

They're asking this data be retained so that **IF A COURT ORDERED SUBPOENA IS ISSUED** the information will be available. Worried by that? It's quite simple, really. Don't prey on children and don't plan terrorist acts and you'll be fine.

Yes, because people never abuse power. Ever.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (3, Insightful)

XMyth (266414) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453491)

Wow. You are amazingly shortsighted.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (5, Insightful)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453509)


They're asking this data be retained so that **IF A COURT ORDERED SUBPOENA IS ISSUED** the information will be available. Worried by that?

Given this administration's shocking contempt for the legal system thus far, yes, I am worried by that. They've collected enough data without having to resort to the 'headache' of due process through the courts...do we really need to make more available to them?

It's quite simple, really. Don't prey on children and don't plan terrorist acts and you'll be fine.

I'll ignore your reference to the Lovejoy gambit and proceed directly to your statement about terrorism. Have you read Patriot Act I and II? If you have, you'd know that the new definition of a 'domestic terrorism' is "any action that endangers human life that is a violation of any Federal or State law". You'd also know that anyone who fits this ridiculously broad definition of 'terrorism' can now be considred an 'enemy combatant' and stripped of their U.S. citizenship and rights. Under current legislation, a person could be legally held indefinitely without trial for something as innocuous as speeding.

If you don't trust the courts to work properly, then your issue is much bigger than this request/legislation.

In that, you're absolutely correct.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (4, Informative)

Johnny5000 (451029) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453677)

Have you read Patriot Act I and II?

If he has, he'd be a few steps ahead of the legislators who actually voted for it.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

Maximum Prophet (716608) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453779)

Under current legislation, a person could be legally held indefinitely without trial for something as innocuous as speeding.

BBBBut, that won't happen to *us*, only to *them*.

Welcome to "Constitutional NIMBY", the game show where your rights are trampled in front of your eyes. Remember folks, the contestants on this show aren't really *People*, like you and me...

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

neoform (551705) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453807)

Meh, this will simply mean internet users are going to get more serious about security.

It's sort of like the **AA shutting down p2p sites, all it does is make users become more cunning when coming up with new technology.

If the government starts snooping on what people are doing online, then everyone will start using SSL for everything. If they request the keys, then users will start using stuff like EFF's Tor http://tor.eff.org/ [eff.org]

What then? The government will outlaw privacy? no, there's no way they will ever be snooping on what I'm doing without me putting up a fight first.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (5, Insightful)

ptbarnett (159784) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453514)

Don't prey on children and don't plan terrorist acts and you'll be fine.

From TFA:

At the meeting with privacy experts yesterday, Justice Department officials focused on wanting to retain the records for use in child pornography and terrorism investigations. But they also talked of their value in investigating other crimes like intellectual property theft and fraud, said Marc Rotenberg, executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center in Washington, who attended the session.

"It was clear that they would go beyond kiddie porn and terrorism and use it for general law enforcement," Mr. Rotenberg said.

---- end cite.

The problem with a "surveillance state" is that the collected information can be abused by the people that collect it. And worse: over-zealous law enforcement can find sufficient evidence of a crime anywhere they want, given the vagueness of many statutes.

Let me put that into focus for you. (1)

khasim (1285) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453645)

The problem with a "surveillance state" is that the collected information can be abused by the people that collect it. And worse: over-zealous law enforcement can find sufficient evidence of a crime anywhere they want, given the vagueness of many statutes.
Does anyone seriously believe there are fewer rapes per capita in (insert totalitarian country of your choice) than in the US?

"Big Brother" does not prevent crime.

"Big Brother" just changes who commits the crimes and then protects them from prosecution.

Re:Let me put that into focus for you. (4, Insightful)

CreatureComfort (741652) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453784)


No. "Big Brother" just ensures that everyone is a documented lawbreaker, and that documentation can be used to harrass, blackmail, or remove anyone who offends the ruling power.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453667)

Ahh, and just when there's a shortage of ammo............

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

cswiii (11061) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453519)

Because every other time laws have required court orders before doing any sort of surveillance, the current administration has been so willingly complicit.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (3, Insightful)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453533)

Oh yes, because no government agency would ever abuse its powers [wikipedia.org] .

Any information that's saved, will be used: if you think it will just be to go after "terrorists" and "pedophiles," you're hopelessly naive. (Or rather, if you think that the definitions of 'terrorist' and 'pedophile' aren't sufficiently vague that they can be easily expanded at will to include pretty much anyone unpopular, you're deluding yourself.)

Reading your comment again I suspect IHBT, though.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (4, Insightful)

RsG (809189) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453544)

Subpoena? You mean like the ones used by the NSA monitoring? Where is that due process thingy again? We seem to have forgotten it somewhere...

Besides which, even if people don't prey on children or plan terrorist acts, what's to stop the **AA from using the greater data retention in the next batch of lawsuits? After all, they can get subpoenas too.

Pedos and terrorists are convienient excuses. The number of actual, real, internet predators and terrorists is very very small. Most violent or sexual crime is in no way related to the net - and most terrorists could easly commit crimes using low tech means (like, oh say, boxcutters, maybe?).

And most child molesters aren't random scary strangers - they're people the victim knows and trusts. The best way to limit the number of molested children would be to force people to get a license before having children, and force people in positions of trust with children (teachers, preists, etc) to undergo rigorous psychological testing. What's that you say? That would violate their constitutional rights? Well tough titty - it's for the children, so that makes it OK.

The reason that laws governing the internet get passed, and laws limiting parenthood don't even get proposed, is that the former are politically easy to sell, and the latter would rightly be seen as oppressive and illegal. It's just more examples of politicians crying "oh won't somebody think of the children" as a way to get elected - because politicians are inherently dishonest and lazy.

If and only if (2, Insightful)

dereference (875531) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453557)

If you don't trust the courts to work properly, then your issue is much bigger than this request/legislation.

Despite your intended meaning, truer words have never been written. Indeed, as you might have noticed, many of believe there might just be a much bigger problem here. So what exactly should we do about it? Well, I figure it makes a whole lot of sense to start by rallying support against this particular request/litigation. That's what this whole democracy thing is supposed to be all about, no? Write your representatives; make sure they actually represent you, and vote them out if they don't.

Worried by that?

Actually yes, and I take it you're not.

Don't prey on children and don't plan terrorist acts and you'll be fine.

Ok, I know now why you're not worried. I guess we're all safe then. The government shall protect us from all the bad people. Ah, the good old "if we have nothing to hide then we have nothing to fear" rhetoric. I'll see your trite remark, and raise with a "let them put cameras in every room of your house" counter. By the way, it's not at all a bluff; I don't think you've been paying much attention to the control some parts of the government have been trying to exert over the populace (yes, I said control; ubiquitous monitoring is a natural first step).

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (3, Interesting)

b0s0z0ku (752509) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453561)

They're asking this data be retained so that **IF A COURT ORDERED SUBPOENA IS ISSUED** the information will be available. Worried by that? It's quite simple, really. Don't prey on children and don't plan terrorist acts and you'll be fine.

Gov't gets a tip that a terrorist attack might be planned in the Raleigh, NC area. All ISP records from that area are subpoenaed. An automated search is run. Everyone who searched on information about, say, chemistry, nuclear reactors, and uranium (as I have in the past) even out of innocent reasons gets a visit from the neighborhood Gestapo. Maybe even a few of them end up in jail until they can exonerate themselves - after all, a judge/grand jury will be hard-pressed not to charge people with *something* if it's a "national security" issue.

And the real terrorists will be laughing their heads off, since they have already had their training in their camp in Pakistan.

-b.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (4, Informative)

indifferent children (842621) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453661)

Maybe even a few of them end up in jail until they can exonerate themselves

Silly rabbit, they can't hold you in jail for more than a few days without charging you with something, and you could be 'produced' under a writ of Habeus Corpus. They wouldn't hold you in a jail. They would send you to Camp X-Ray in Guantanamo (if you're lucky enough to avoid a truly secret detention camp).

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

RingDev (879105) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453684)

"Maybe even a few of them end up in jail until they can exonerate themselves"

Only by that time you've been deemed an 'enemy combatant,' stripped of your rights and shipped out of the country. Maybe after 6 months of separation and torture they'll let you go, but then again, dealing with the publicity of a US citizen getting nabbed... It may just be easier to put a round in your head and drop you in the Mediterranean.

-Rick

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

b0s0z0ku (752509) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453758)

Only by that time you've been deemed an 'enemy combatant,' stripped of your rights and shipped out of the country. Maybe after 6 months of separation and torture they'll let you go, but then again, dealing with the publicity of a US citizen getting nabbed...

That's still a Bad Thing, just as a few people being kept in jail unnecessarily...

BTW- is it actually legal for them to send US citizens to as prisoners to Guantanamo? I thought 'enemy combatants' were strictly non-citizens from outside the US - anyone nabbed within the US got a trial like Moussaoui did.

-b.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

RingDev (879105) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453398)

"Translation: Will we have to ram another law through Congress to make this happen, or can we achieve the same results through good old-fashioned coercion and intimidation? After all, if we have to pass a law, then we'll be constrained by the law's wording...but if we 'persuade' the Internet companies to retin this data for us 'voluntarily', then we can act without restraint or oversight...after all, it is 'voluntary'..."

An interesting thought. What happens if the ISPs play along for the next few months and in November the Republicans lose control of the house and senate? Can the ISP lobiests motivate the democratic party to put an end to this big brother like behavior?

-Rick

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

lbrandy (923907) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453420)

Can the ISP lobiests motivate the democratic party to put an end to this big brother like behavior?

Good luck with that.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

sperdich (942787) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453465)

Do you really think that Democrats and Republicans are so different? http://perdichizzi.com.ar/ [perdichizzi.com.ar]

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

RingDev (879105) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453606)

No, but they have a great campaign to run on this year. "We're not republicans!"

We can hope, and we can vote. Do the research and make sure you are not putting someone in office who would rather abuse power then preserve rights.

-Rick

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

sperdich (942787) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453744)

Of course! Not to be a republican is a fabulous campaign now!! I agree with that. But you are still hoping not to be abused anymore. It's kind of utopic... But I still hope this nonsense to be stopped. One way or another. http://perdichizzi.com.ar/ [perdichizzi.com.ar]

The Democrats wont fix this - why would they? (2, Insightful)

Xehn (669415) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453655)

The democrats aren't any different, they're just Kang to Bush's Kodos. Remember, Clinton was in office when the NSA Wiretapping began, (not to mention when the DMCA was written). The democrats aren't the answer, and thinking that they are is playing right into their game. The two major parties have BOTH been taking turns eroding our rights for generations. Just swapping out one set of criminals for another wont change anything. Doesn't the public see this? How can our collective memory be so short? The Democrats piss us off, so we elect Republicans, they screw something up, and hand back off the the Democrats. Rinse, repeat (always repeat). This has been going on for a VERY long time. If we want real change, we need to have some MAJOR housecleaning in Washington. Stricter term limits, tighter reigns on corruption and lobbying, maybe actually USE all of those checks and balances our founding fathers so thoughtfully provided us. The real source of our problems here are not the terrorists, the Bush Administration, the Republicans, the Democrats, or even the corporate lobbyists - it's US - the American People, for buying into their crap, time after time after time.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

pavon (30274) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453700)

You mean the same democratic party that voted for the Patriot Act, and the DMCA. Who has no qualms waving the child preditor flag, and passing unconstitional ex post facto laws against those who have committed "sex crimes" in their own states. Who led the cause for eminant domain laws. Whose previous presidental candidate, while recognizing that our rights are being infringed upon by the Patriot Act, continues to vote for it, because "the security concerns are greater". Whose main front-lady constantly beats the drum of the evils of video games and music, and pushing for them to be self-censored, else the governement will step in.

Both Progressives and the Neocons are more than willing to throw our rights aside in order to achieve thier goals. For the Neocons this means use of military dominance to secure US economic and strategic interests around the world. For the Progressives it means creating a perfect sheltered suburban/urban existance. For both it means increasing their power, and paying back their corporate constituents.

I could do without either. I don't need the Progressives constanly passing laws because they know what's better for me. I don't need the Religious Right legislating their beliefs down my throat. I don't need our intrests defended to the point of propping up dictators, and fueling hatred for our country. I don't need my streets free of criminals, if it means we are all treated like criminals. I will happily live with the inperfections in our world if it means that I won't loose anymore rights.

<cynical>
Perhaps you are right - perhaps the problem with the democratic party isn't that they are corrupt, but that they are spineless, and will happily bow to the pressures of the ISP's once the pressure of the republicans are off their backs.
</cynical>

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (0, Flamebait)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453745)

Can the ISP lobiests motivate the democratic party to put an end to this big brother like behavior?

That was the funniest thing I've read all morning. You might want to make your dry, sarcastic wit more obvious, though. People might misinterpret you as being serious, and think you're a complete moron or something.

In general the only difference between Democrats and Republicans is that the Republicans generally go after the "we have to do this to stop the terrorists" angle, and the Democrats tend towards "we have to protect the children!" The majority of both parties just toss around emotional arguments devoid of any rationality, going after the knee-jerk response in whatever they perceive their principal constituency to be. The only difference is whether they think they can get more of a rise out of said constituency by going at the issue from the perspective of national security or "protecting your children."

The only reason we're not living either in the "People's Republic of the United States" or "Pat Roberson's JesusLand(TM), Brought to you by Bechtel-Halliburton" is because the politicians spend enough time bickering that they generally don't have enough time at the end of the day to seriously screw things up.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

sperdich (942787) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453400)

So, if you don't hate childrens (i think noone will afford that) you must help them to catch up terrorist by obliterating your privacy? Is that what american people want? I just don't get it. Noone can see how those mechanisms works? I mean, I'm not a politician analist, but I see that it's simple to work out with this. What can american people do to avoid that kind of abuse from their government? http://perdichizzi.com.ar/ [perdichizzi.com.ar]

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (5, Funny)

Virak (897071) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453409)

If you oppose this data retention, you must hate children. You don't hate children, do you?

Yes, I do, but that's not why I'm against this.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

jez9999 (618189) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453553)

If you oppose this data retention, you must hate children. You don't hate children, do you?

Well, paedophiles sure don't.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453702)

ram another law through Congress to make this happen, or can we achieve the same results through good old-fashioned coercion and intimidation

What's the difference? Everything government does is based on the principle of coercion. That's the whole point of government -- it is the organization holding the unique "right" to employ coercion as a means to an end. Coercion is the tool of government, the hammer that supposedly solves any imaginable problem. After all, if the goal was free will, there would be no need for government. If the moral standard was voluntary association, there wouldn't be a place for government.

Put another way, the fact that government is voted upon does not, in any way, remove the core element of coercion from government. The people in congress (or "we the people") don't vote on where and how to employ voluntary association -- they vote on where and how to employ coercion. Voluntary association is, of course, the natural state which human nature has evolved.

Re:Appeals to Emotion. (1)

Pig Hogger (10379) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453716)

Ah yes...yet another shameless use of the 'Lovejoy Gambit'. If you oppose this data retention, you must hate children. You don't hate children, do you?
I ** HATE ** children. Therefore I will never molest any!!!

So, if you love children, you're a potential child molestor!!!

Solaris is Evil! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453311)

A company that attempts to build a stable OS that can retain data as Solaris can is up to no good. So now we know that Solaris is more evil then Microsoft. Yeah with Microsoft crashing, they are single handily protecting your privacy; it is such a burden to carry and all they get is grief.

Why do I have 10 cars parked outside every (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453314)

night? It seems my neighbors unprotected wifi connection seem to slow down at that time. Any ideas?

My Logs aren't perfect. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453317)

Every 108 minutes, I'll have a group type in 4 8 15 16 23 42 and press enter into the log machine. The group will do this or they know that dire consequences wait.
I'll have another group to monitor and record the action of the people entering the log. What - you don't like my logs?

Mycarthyism.... (5, Insightful)

beheaderaswp (549877) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453334)

It's nothing but Mycarthyism.

We just jumped back 50 years.

Re:Mycarthyism.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453511)

I'm as unhappy about this as much as anyone, but I'm not sure I see the McCarthy link. ??? If the government were using the data to persecute anyone who happened to, say, read Al Jazeera's site every day, then you might have a better analogy.

Ya gotta break a few eggs to make an omelette. (-1, Troll)

JonTurner (178845) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453518)

>>It's nothing but Mycarthyism.
Perhaps. But that's not necessarily a bad thing. Remember that McCarthy exposed quite a few soviet spies.

As Whittaker Chambers said "Innocense seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does."

Re:Ya gotta break a few eggs to make an omelette. (1)

GungaDan (195739) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453631)

"Remember that McCarthy exposed quite a few soviet spies."

Sure thing, chief. And Pol Pot worked wonders in preventing a Cambodian population explosion. I also hear bleach kills HIV. What's a little collateral damage in pursuit of a noble goal, right?

Moron.

Re:Ya gotta break a few eggs to make an omelette. (1)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453678)

Remember that McCarthy exposed quite a few soviet spies.

No, in fact he didn't. This revisionist meme has become popular with the right wing in its attempt to rehabilitate that repulsive un-American sack of shit, but it's still shit.

Re:Mycarthyism.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453682)

Welcome to China!! Telecommunications companies keep records of all of our communications so the government can, at its leisure, go back and review them for things they do not like. Even worse, these telecomm companies are not doing this because of the law. They are violating our privacy because of the threat of a law being put into place. Who the fuck does George Bush think he is?

Why.. (1)

LupidStupy (663804) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453345)

do I see Americans getting sick of this crap in the future. No, wait. That is a dream.

Is this China? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453359)

Seriously. For all the grief we give the Chinese government for oppressing their citizens and firewalling their internet access, this administration sure seems to be doing everything in their power to make the U.S. the same!

Thank God I'm Irish! (1)

Onias (877651) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453492)

It makes me glad to live in Ireland, where our politicians are able to handle economic AND social AND personal freedom simultaneously! I mean, seriously, even the Heritage Foundation [heritage.org] can see that the United States has declined. Over here, we don't consciously break our Constitution five times a day.

Re:Thank God I'm Irish! (1)

lbrandy (923907) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453526)

it makes me glad to live in Ireland

You need to read this [wikipedia.org] . Right now. And this. [digitalrights.ie] It's not good when you are critizing other countries for doing things your country has already done...

The United Kingdom, France, Ireland and Sweden are attempting to persuade the European Union to introduce a directive which would make data retention mandatory throughout the EU....

It passed.

What's the point? (4, Insightful)

Bombula (670389) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453380)

I'm not sure I really see the value of this information. Sure, some crackheads end up on Fark.com for showing their ID to the teller while robbing a bank, but the real pedaphiles and terrorists of the world don't do regular google searches for "how to build a bomb" and "kiddie porn" from the computers in their homes. To think there will be any significant amount of useful data collected in this fashion is, well, fairly retarded in my opinion.

I can see this data being useful retroactively for things like criminal profiling and possibly being valuable for targeted marketing analysis, but not for catching child molesters and terrorists.

Re:What's the point? (2, Insightful)

lbrandy (923907) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453438)

I can see this data being useful retroactively for things like criminal profiling and possibly being valuable for targeted marketing analysis, but not for catching child molesters and terrorists.

That's not what it's being used for. It's being used to prove people are child molesters. As in, the think you are a child molestor, show a judge their evidence, get access to your web records. In that sense, it is "retroactive". They aren't, however, doing proactive searches through it to find child pornography.

Re:What's the point? (1)

pla (258480) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453521)

That's not what it's being used for. It's being used to prove people are child molesters.

Child molestation occurs offline. What the hell will data retention policies do to affect it in the least?

At best, post hoc examination of web traffic can show a possible predisposition to pedophilia (or just a poor choice of search terms compounded with clicking on the "wrong" links).


This only makes sense in trying to play the typical prosecutor's game of high-bluff poker - "We can't quite pin the robbery on you, but we now know you have a thing for goats. Take our offer and plead guilty, or we'll bring you up on ''animal cruelty'' charges in a very publicised case".

Re:What's the point? (1)

lbrandy (923907) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453556)

Child molestation occurs offline.

You are absolutely correct. I meant child pornography. If they catch some child molester, subpeona his internet records, and find out he visted 100s of child pornographic websites.. it improves their case, alot. Child molestation is already a very difficult thing to prove. It generally comes down to word vs word, adult vs child... so typically circumstantial evidence is necessary for convinction.

Note: I am not advocating data retention.. I'm just explaining the rationale.

Re:What's the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453527)

the real pedaphiles and terrorists of the world don't do regular google searches for "how to build a bomb" and "kiddie porn" from the computers in their homes

I used to work for security for AOL. Yes, the pedophiles and terrorists (home grown) are that stupid. It happens so often that when AOL turned on one system for finding stuff, they had to turn it off a few days later because the agency charged with investigating was swamped with leads. (Real leads, not false positives)

That's the real problem with this idea. The AG has no idea of just how much data there is.

Make it hard for them (2, Interesting)

EBFoxbat (897297) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453385)

What can I do in my dad-to-day browsing to make it hard for the NSA/CIA/ect ? Does going through proxies help anything?

Re:Make it hard for them (1)

The_Mr_Flibble (738358) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453424)

Don't do anything illegal.
Then they have to waste their time looking for you doing illegal stuff or just make it up.

Re:Make it hard for them (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453425)

Re:Make it hard for them (3, Insightful)

w33t (978574) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453451)

The best thing you can do with your browser is to write your congressperson [house.gov] and paraphrase some of the more cogent arguments for privacy; many are and have been presented here on slashdot.

This website can be quite a trove of insight.
--
Music should be free [myspace.com]

Re:Make it hard for them (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453534)

vpn though to a machine in country B which establishes a new connection to machnine in country C which connects out to whatever u want, avoid US/Canada/EU/Australia for B and C.
Would make it difficult at least.

Evil Goverment Changes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453391)

This is insane, and someone has to stop our supposed to be free country from going this way and allowing these nut jobs in the goverment from taking our rights, its our country as well as theirs and they have not reason to be allowed these types of survalance techs.

Just remember, this is not a fishing expedition (5, Insightful)

smooth wombat (796938) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453399)

Just like the warrantless phone monitoring, just like law enforcement officials can now invade your home without a warrant to see if there is evidence of a crime so they can get a warrant, this is not a fishing expedition.

Nor are we trying to track where everyone goes or what they read. We're ensuring that everyone is fully protected from those bad, bad terrorists. You know, 9/11 and all.

You see, people want to be free. We're ensuring they can be free by these actions. All we ask is that people understand that we're in it for the long run and ask for their patience while we administer these proctology exams.

Just remember, 9/11 was a wakup call [democratic...ground.com] . We can't let these terrorists take our freedoms away.

Re:Just remember, this is not a fishing expedition (1)

godless dave (844089) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453481)

9/11 was a wake-up call - but the government seems to be going after everyone EXCEPT Osama bin Laden.

Re:Just remember, this is not a fishing expedition (1)

denis-The-menace (471988) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453517)

We can't let these terrorists take our freedoms away.

That because it's (it is) a job for authoritarian governments.

...bad idea (3, Funny)

big dumb dog (876383) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453407)

This makes me think about an old SNL commercial [wikipedia.org] for BAD IDEA jeans.

...Normally I wear protection, but then I thought, "When am I gonna make it back to Haiti?"

...I thought about it, and even though it's over, I'm going to tell my wife about the afffair.

...Well, he's an ex free-base addict, and he's trying to turn around, and he needs a place to stay for a couple of months.

Re:...bad idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453656)

Wow. I so don't get those. Are they US in-jokes?

Retention is ok if lawmakers agree to scrutiny (4, Interesting)

postbigbang (761081) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453413)

We should be able to keep track of lawmakers, where they go, who's buying dinner (or whatever is spent), which people they're with, whether they used condoms, and their cell phone records.... with reverse # lookups.

Then we can let ISPs retain the records of where we surf.

Egads:

Amendment 1:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Amendment 4:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Re:Retention is ok if lawmakers agree to scrutiny (1)

Martz (861209) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453605)

It almost seems like the constitution has become the goverments equivalent of a MegaCorps press release.

It states a load of stuff which all sounds very reasonable, but it's not until you actually buy [into] it that you realise the reality is a whole lot different than the spin.

Re:Retention is ok if lawmakers agree to scrutiny (2)

Maximum Prophet (716608) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453696)

Well, they've thrown out the rest of the constitution, so why not the 1st and 4th. Once they've erroded the 2nd, the rest follow.

Anyway, people would rather feel safe, than be free. Even if they aren't really safe.

Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.


The current administration has thrown this one out the window. What part of "No person" do they not understand. (Note, the "in cases arising in the land or naval forces" refers to *memebers* of those forces, not "Enemy Combatants")

Amendment IX

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.


Amendment X

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.


Well, hell, these are right out too.

Amerika (0, Flamebait)

bazmail (764941) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453419)

Man what a repressive crap-hole! Sure glad I don't live there.

Re:Amerika (1)

lbrandy (923907) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453474)

Man what a repressive crap-hole! Sure glad I don't live there.

Hope you don't live in Europe [wikipedia.org] . We stole the idea from them.

The all powerful ISPs (3, Interesting)

usurper_ii (306966) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453447)

Of course, log files can be manipulated and faked. ISPs will have the power to exonerate or destroy people (maybe a new revenue stream for the ISPs???).

If this does become law, soon it will be required that the ISPs use only "approved" monitoring software, perhaps software that will digitally sign the log files. And then, since they still can't be trusted, the log files will have to be kept in a central location of some government office.

How much will this "approved" monitoring software cost?

Usurper_ii

Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution (4, Insightful)

netsetboy (978741) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453453)

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized. These people are just going to far...! We need to start blasting ISP's with so much email that they finally get the picture, that we don't appreciate being spyed on...!

Feel Safer? (4, Funny)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453455)

Republicans bring you smaller, less intrusive government and more deregulation.

Sure would be nice... (1)

cswiii (11061) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453457)

...if companies would just hold out for a few months at which point we could "throw the bums out", as it were, in the House and Senate, get rid of the rubber stampers and anyone who would enact new legislation.

But that's just in theory, of course. No company is going to take a stand against Abu Gonzalez, and too many Americans are too apathetic to pay any attention to their rights being eroded. More votes for the last "American Idol" than in the last Presidential election, indeed...

Re:Sure would be nice... (1)

w33t (978574) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453528)

First of all, I agree with you whole-heartedly. However, please take into account that "American Idol" can be voted for with a text message or phone call, and you don't need to register to vote, and you can be 8 years old and vote, and you can vote multiple times.

Ok, now that I have that off my chest: don't you wish there was a new-new world out there? I seem to remember something about how so many individuals left the old world behind 300 years ago because their ideas didn't mesh well with the old world.

They traveled across the ocean and prospered in a new land where they could create their own laws and live life the way they wanted to.

Now there is nowhere left to go. We've traveled as far as we can. There is no more land for new countries.

It's starting to make me feel somewhat trapped.
--
Music should be free [myspace.com]

Re:Sure would be nice... (1)

Section_Ei8ht (951997) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453749)

Now there is nowhere left to go. We've traveled as far as we can. There is no more land for new countries.

We can just go to the moon! After all, it does have an abundant food source, what with all the cheese.

Death, Taxes and now... (2, Insightful)

Il128 (467312) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453464)

A record of all of your Internet activity, phone calls, convictions, allegations, magazine subscriptions, library records... Privacy? What's privacy daddy?

Data retention won't happen... (1)

cswiger2005 (905744) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453488)

Even mandating this sort of data retention by law isn't going to result in it happening, even if the FBI & DHS won't accept the ISPs saying "no" to this "request".

The requirements for complete data retention for a standard broadband service like a T1, DSL, or cable link are on the order of several hundred GB per month, or more than a terabyte per year. Even just forcing the use of a reverse web proxy and keeping the logs from that and your SMTP/POP/IMAP logs are going to run several GB per year, per person. A site doing ~1 million hits a day fills up a 40GB log partition in about a week, or 15TB per year.

It doesn't matter how much space you've got, or even how rediculuously cheap hard drives are today, people can and will fill it up. Every service that generates significant amounts of logging uses logfile rotation to avoid filling up your finite online storage. However, if you take regular enough backups, and keep all of the backup tapes rather than reusing them in next weeks or months rotation, you can archive all of your log data in a near-offline fashion.

Still, do you have any idea of the actual percentage of companies or datacenters that manage to take full, complete, tested-restorable backups for a multiyear period? Let's put it this way: even the White House can't manage to backup all of their access records and emails reliably.

Re:Data retention won't happen... (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453637)

"Let's put it this way: even the White House can't manage to backup all of their access records and emails reliably."

I'm quite sure that you are right (that they aren't capable of backing up reliably). However, I'm also fairly certain that certain 'missing backups' are not missing by accident. Evidence has a way of disappearing, or becoming classified, in pretty handy spots.

I pledge allegiance to the keylogger (1)

spyrochaete (707033) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453510)

So an MCSE certifies you to handle private information about American citizens now? Or perhaps helpdesk will have to swear on the bible every day upon arriving at work? Maybe ISPs will be required to hire a CIA consultant? And surely internet subscribers won't be charged extra to assist government investigations potentially incriminating themselves.

Search engines and the end user must submit all their secrets to the government now, all in the name of stopping child predators. What'll be the next CIA vector? Cable installers? The wireless spectrum? Mandatory keyloggers on every PC? Maybe ban personal computers outright and install communal terminals at the end of every street, operated by Social Insurance card.

Every human being wants to assault and rape children at some point in their life. It's good to know the American government is there to protect us from ourselves.

Re:I pledge allegiance to the keylogger (1)

cswiger2005 (905744) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453549)

Every human being wants to assault and rape children at some point in their life.

Um, no. It's unfortunate that you think this is so, and it's worse than unfortunate that what you've said is true of some people, but it's not true of everyone.

Re:I pledge allegiance to the keylogger (1)

spyrochaete (707033) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453650)

Did I forget to close my </sarcasm> tag? I guess my comment wasn't W3C complient.

Re:I pledge allegiance to the keylogger (1)

cswiger2005 (905744) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453778)

Sarcasm is best used as a seasoning for humor, rather than as the primary ingredient.

And some topics aren't humorous no matter how they are presented: child abuse should be something that we don't need to joke about, hmm...?

Isn't it time we've taken a stand?! (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453545)

I'm sick of all this crap. I'm sick of what the Bush administration is doing to the entire planet, let alone to the US. This has to be opposed as strongly as can be. We should send emails to all ISPs we do business with urging them to oppose this as other companies have in the past. If they have customer support... or rather, customer's supporting their opposition, they will feel a lot more comfortable about it.

I'm not sure it's all that helpful to send messages of opposition to congress or the senate. But people should send those too. If you have a voter registration card, send a copy of that along with your letter. It will stand out more.

Nope (1)

pwntang (902080) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453660)

When Bush blows an intern, then we'll do something about it.

Harmonization (4, Interesting)

chill (34294) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453546)

The concept of "harmonization" has been used to justify lengthening copyright terms around the globe. If a major area has a longer term, it is easier to convince everyone to bump up to that than have the term lowered. Governments almost never give back power or revenue willingly.

In this case, Europe was used as a trial balloon by the U.S. While the data retention laws were discussed and debated in Europe, the U.S. policy makers publically commented about the dangers of this sort of thing and how it could lead to a totalitarian "big brother" mentality. All the while they were telling people in the U.S. how much of a breach of privacy this is and how it will never happen here, the back-channels to Europe were doing nothing but supporting the push for mandatory retention and gauging the reaction -- and attention levels -- of the peoples.

Once the E.U. backdoor hammered thru a mandatory data retention law, the U.S. changed its tune. Newly appointed Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez and staff started talking up data retention in the U.S. and pointing to Europe as leading the way. We are now well down this path. For those of you hoping to stall for two more years until there is a change in administration (aka "regeime change"), don't get your hopes up because the Democrats are just as bad. They'll still fuck you over but will be telling you how much they love you and how it is for your own good. (The Republicans just leave out the "but we love you" part. It is still for your own good.)

While Europeans love to preach to Americans about how much more privacy aware they are, and how they have Constitutional guarantees and strong laws protecting their privacy and data use, they miss a fundamental difference.

In Europe, the concept of privacy doesn't include the government. Yes, they have strong laws dictating how data is used, kept, stored and brokered so as to prevent misuse by third parties, individuals and corporations. But, they have no real protections about government access and use to all that data. All in the name of paternalistic government, enacted thru "anti-terror", "anti-drug" and "immigration control" laws the gov'ts of Europe have no privacy when it comes to bureaucratic eyes.

In the U.S. the concept of privacy really means just you. It is *your* data and *your* information and privacy means ONLY YOU get to determine where it goes and how it is used. The government is NOT (in theory) given a free pass or exemption to use, store or broker your data. For the longest time the U.S. Social Security numbers had printed on the issued cards "not to be used as I.D." so great was the fear of a "national I.D.". Of course, this is offset by most American's apathy towards anything to do with government. As long as they can afford their beers, pay the bills and watch their idiot box most of them will be complacent about damn near anything that doesn't interfere with any of that.

Don't believe me? How about his for a statistic: more people voted in the last American Idol episode of that television show than did in the last Presidential Election.

Re:Harmonization (3, Interesting)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453763)

"Don't believe me? How about his for a statistic: more people voted in the last American Idol episode of that television show than did in the last Presidential Election."

Not true. More votes were cast -- but many people voted multiple times in the American Idol final. Only in a couple districts[1] did a significant number of people vote more than once (or have their vote counted more than once) in the last presidential election. Plus, you're leaving out the people who voted but weren't tabulated in the presidential election -- I heard there were a couple[2] of those in OH and FL.

[1] A small town in New England (NH?) had more votes tabulated than they had registered voters.

[2] where 'couple' = thousands.

Another unfunded mandate (5, Insightful)

stankulp (69949) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453555)

Transfer the costs of spying to the ISPs.

Priceless.

High potential for abuse (3, Insightful)

QCompson (675963) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453563)

Putting aside for a second just how effective this data retention would be in catching child predators and terrorists, the probability of the DOJ and police forces abusing this vast database of information is staggeringly high.

Law enforcement agencies love pursuing internet crime because it is so exceedingly easy for them to do. They can sit behind a desk, eat doughnuts, and bust a bunch of teenagers on Myspace for posting a picture of a pot plant or a 16 y.o. boobie. Giving them mandatory data retention for two years would make their jobs easier still. If I was convinced they would be going after actual terrorists and real child-abusers then I would perhaps be more understanding, but I don't want the privacy rights of all americans sacrificed so the cops can bust a few more dumb teenagers and closet-perverts.

https:// wanted (4, Interesting)

crow (16139) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453577)

This is another good reason to use https instead of http. Unfortunately, most web sites will only use https for commerce. If Google used https by default, then the government would have to subpoena them directly to find out what a particular user searched for. Likewise, if Slashdot used https by default, then the government would have a lot more trouble figuring out who an anonymous coward was.

Copykats (2, Insightful)

liangzai (837960) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453628)

Can't you guy invent your own stuff rather than taking our Snow White, our democracy, our data retention initiative...?

Let me quote Thomas Jefferson (younger people can e-mail me and I'll tell you) to show you how perverted you Americans have become lately:

"It has been pretended by some, (and in England especially,) that inventors have a natural and exclusive right to their inventions, and not merely for their own lives, but inheritable to their heirs. But while it is a moot question whether the origin of any kind of property is derived from nature at all, it would be singular to admit a natural and even an hereditary right to inventors. It is agreed by those who have seriously considered the subject, that no individual has, of natural right, a separate property in an acre of land, for instance."

Dr. Strangelove, or Albert Gonzales? (4, Funny)

Open114 (955414) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453647)

"It would be easy Mein Fuhrer, I mean, Mr. President..."

If anyone working at Google reads this... (1)

republican gourd (879711) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453706)

Having "https://www.google.com" *actually* exist, rather than simply redirecting to the non-https version would be incredibly non-evil.

I don't know the overhead difference between http and https offhand, though, that might be a dealbreaker.

User data retention. Why? (1)

VincenzoRomano (881055) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453730)

I wonder whether such Government claims make any sense for an ISP.
Maybe for a phone company it can make some sense to record the details of every single phone call. If you place 10 calls a day and receive 10 a day, a 500K users company will have to record about 3.6 billion records. Doable but you still don't know the actual contents of those calls.
In an ISP things get worse because on a single connection you run email, IM, P2P, web browsing, IRC ... etc. The number of records could be multiplied by 100 or even 1000, thus yelding a number of record betwen 360 billions and 3.6 trillions for a 500K users ISP.
The main isssue there would be how to search and browse among all those records. A secondary issue would also be the storage.
Things are actually worse.
The really bad news come when you need to know the contents of conversations. While tough cryptograpy in phone calls is very rare, it is quite common on the Internet.
So if it's rather easy to wiretap on a phone network, it can be almost impossible on Internet, especially if the interesting conversation are done with a P2P model, thus not using an intermediate server, and with a fairly good cryptography.
And you can bet that the bad guys that want to avoid wiretapping have plenty of technologies to defy almost any attempts.

So, why bothering ISPs with data retention?

Define ISP (1)

b0s0z0ku (752509) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453777)

Encrypted anon. web proxy. No logs kept. If traffic volume was sufficient, it would be very difficult to correlate outgoing traffic with an incoming IP. And web proxies probably aren't considered ISPs, since they don't provide the "final inch" to a user's doorstep.

-b.

Time to act! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15453785)

I have nothing to hide but I am a privacy advocate and I feel very uncomfortable knowing that all my data, emails, etc, can be potentially stored & recorded at multiple places on the Net. Then later retrieved for any reason by people other than me, including the government. It upsets me and makes me feel sick to my stomach. As I said, I have nothing really to hide, I just _hate_ the idea of anyone potentially spying on me.

It is time that someone, an individual, a group, an organization to come together and start fighting all of this up.

When I came to this country, 10 years ago, I felt it was a country of freedom, and I was proud to be here and feeling 'free'. Freedom of expression, freedom of speach, freedom of trying things, and eventually even failing with possibility of coming back, a good lesson learned.

Now it feels like it is going towards one of the most excessively monitored, regulated, policed, country in the world, dominated by companies for their profits, and paranoia of some governments. If I feel safer now than 10 years ago? No. Is it because of terrorism and all? No, it is become of the Paranoia and inflexible stance of this government towards the outside that most other countries hate us. It would be easy to make peace with others, you just have to have the right attitude.

It seems that few a things took over this country and made it worst over the past few years:
- Paranoia, close mind of the actual government, and unwillingness to negotiate, watching over their own interest.
- Dictatorship of a few companies/groups that are having too much power over the government, name a few? MPAA/RIAA/Hollywood industry/Music industry/All the companies that work very heavily towards influencing the government and making laws for THEIR profit.
- $$ and heavy lobbying of the richest companies to become richests.
- Lawyers trying to bend everything their ways to make more $$

Do they care about people? No. They care about their own bottomline. Google? net Neutrality. Good for them. AT&T? Cisco? NO NET Neutrality. We need more money.

This country is governed by $$, and way too much influence on the government. Someone has to be done. Something has to be changed. A new fresh president/face promoting changes should come up. Wreak havoc all of this and work on one thing. Make America again a successfull and respected country. By both its citizens, and people outside. It is time the constitution is changed. That laws are changed. Companies do reorgs all the time.

America needs a massive reoganization.

Any volunteer?

The cost to the ISP (5, Insightful)

kbuckalo (411216) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453798)

I am the owner of a small ISP in Santa Cruz, California. We get a couple/few subpoenas a year from the FBI, like most ISPs. My concern with data retention of logs, which is what is being asked for here, is: 1. privacy - 'nuff said 2: the cost to the ISP.

We're a small ISP, and we keep a week or two of backups and it's already several terabytes. Now, the feds want us to extract all the access, email and web log files from the backups and save them from 2 years. There's a couple thousand ISPs in the US, spread this cost over the US industry, and you are looking at millions, perhaps tens of millions of dollars per year in additional storage and staff costs.

As a final point, I have 3 kids. Anyone invites me to a meeting and opens it with slides of child porn and my one thought is they are sick sick sick. Most of the people "invited" to the meeting are probably parents, you can sell anti-child porn without showing it to us! What does it say about our AG that he supports torture and has a collection of child porn which he shows to people?

Defiance (2, Informative)

AnyThingButWindows (939158) | more than 8 years ago | (#15453799)

My servers remove their logs, and create new ones once a week. I care about my customer's privacy. If they arrest me, then so be it. But they will have to face a judge, and get his permission first. But the government has no business meddleing in mine.
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