Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

FBI Accidentally Received Unauthorized E-Mail Access

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the that's-a-big-oops dept.

Privacy 122

AmishElvis writes "The New York Times reports that 'glitch' gave the F.B.I. access to the e-mail messages from an entire computer network. A hundred or more accounts may have been accessed, rather than 'the lone e-mail address' that was approved by a secret intelligence court as part of a national security investigation. The episode was disclosed as part of a new batch of internal documents that the F.B.I. turned over to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, as part of a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit the group has brought."

cancel ×

122 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

FISA court: whatcouldpossiblygowrong (5, Funny)

davidwr (791652) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448312)

Oh wait too late.

Better cover it up.

Oops, we botched that too.

Re:FISA court: whatcouldpossiblygowrong (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22448374)

I received an unauthorized rusty trombone from CdmrTaco when I interned at the geek compound. I doubt he slipped me those roofies on accident, though.

I'm sure we all remember how traumatic it is to wake up to find yourself bent over a table with a dude eating out your asshole while jacking you off. He didn't have the decency to use lube, that cocksucker.

Re:FISA court: whatcouldpossiblygowrong (2, Insightful)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 6 years ago | (#22451654)

Which leads to the conclusion - run your own mailserver.

A cheap Linux box running Sendmail and an installation of OpenSSL to let Sendmail be able to run SMTPS.

On top of that use a POP3/IMAP server that can do POP3S/IMAPS and you can access your mail without the risk of an accidental peek.

Unauthorized in today's world? (5, Interesting)

russlar (1122455) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448326)

Can any kind government access be considered unauthorized anymore? There have been so many executive orders, bending of laws, etc. that just about every form of government access to information is authorized by something.

Re:Unauthorized in today's world? (4, Insightful)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448896)

"There have been so many executive orders, bending of laws, etc. that just about every form of government access to information is authorized by something."

Sounds fine on Slashdot, alt.politics groups, or black helicopter chat, but in reality you can't even try to go in with that position as a prosecutor. Even a conservative judge will hand you your ass.

Re:Unauthorized in today's world? (4, Insightful)

Original Replica (908688) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449130)

just about every form of government access to information is authorized by something.

I think what the GP meant was that there would be some sort of quasi-official authorization. Along the lines of making all of the evidence classified beyond the judges level to ever see the it, or some kind of DHS gag order + infinite postponement of the trial. Simply a classified letter from an FBI big telling the prosecutor or judge not to pursue the matter any further might work just fine. The is a fair amount of risk in challenging it, a risk many people would not like to take. I'm sure there are ways for the security portions of the government to be technically "cooperating" but never actually have to really answer to a judge. There are parallels to this kind of behavior where the politically powerful simply refuse to comply with the law and seem to be getting away with it. [democrats.com]

Re:Unauthorized in today's world? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22449382)

I think what the GP meant was that there would be some sort of quasi-official authorization. Along the lines of making all of the evidence classified beyond the judges level to ever see the it, or some kind of DHS gag order + infinite postponement of the trial
Ah- you mean the stuff that makes up the delerious fantasies of the loony tin foil hat crowd that calls /. home?

Re:Unauthorized in today's world? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22449466)

There are parallels to this kind of behavior

The only meaningful parallel has become the pusillanimous attempt to get retroactive amnesty for the telcos "who cooperated with government requests in good faith".

If the cocksuckers have their way, they'll make Clinton look like a piker in the last days of the present corrupt administration -- Bushfuck will grant retroactive and prospective immunity and amnesty to every Republican on earth and to all who agree with them for any offense committed for the lifetime of the fucks -- plus seventy years.

Re:Unauthorized in today's world? (1)

killmofasta (460565) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450052)

"If the cocksuckers have their way, they'll make Clinton look like a piker in the last days of the present corrupt administration -- Bushfuck will grant retroactive and prospective immunity and amnesty to every Republican on earth and to all who agree with them for any offense committed for the lifetime of the fucks -- plus seventy years."

Now, normally, Id mod this troll, but there is just so much veniment anger, he might go postal. Better ... mod parent +1 funny. "make Clinton look like a piker" +2. Hehehe!

Re:Unauthorized in today's world? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22451478)

If the cocksuckers have their way, they'll make Clinton look like a piker in the last days of the present corrupt administration

Do you really need to insult people performing oral sex?

Re:Unauthorized in today's world? (1)

mpe (36238) | more than 6 years ago | (#22451446)

Sounds fine on Slashdot, alt.politics groups, or black helicopter chat, but in reality you can't even try to go in with that position as a prosecutor. Even a conservative judge will hand you your ass.

If the intention is actually to take a case to court? If the idea is to get a "plea bargin" or simply harrasment then it dosn't matter what a judge would or not do.

Re:Unauthorized in today's world? (1)

cheater512 (783349) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448930)

And if something wasn't authorized then the investigation seems to just disappear and no one is ever punished.

Re:Unauthorized in today's world? (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449462)

Can any kind government access be considered unauthorized anymore?

Sure. I can say that nobody is authorized to access my computer except myself. Anyone doing so is therefore unauthorized. If you meant, can it be considered illegal? Yes again. The real question: will the government be held to the law? No, because the US government considers itself above the law, and since it enforces it, it won't be held to the law.

Re:Unauthorized in today's world? (1)

mpe (36238) | more than 6 years ago | (#22451434)

Can any kind government access be considered unauthorized anymore? There have been so many executive orders, bending of laws, etc. that just about every form of government access to information is authorized by something.

There's always spying on other parts of government together with there no doubt being some "patrician list" on individuals who should not be spied upon.
Especially if there is actually a good reason to be carrying out an investigation on these entities. Given history, just about any government official above a certain level (including police chiefs) actually should be under routine snooping.

woo (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22448342)

black cat!

glitch in the matrix!

man in chair sweats

mysterious metal flower pots dance around

Trust the FBI? (5, Funny)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448348)

So they "accidentally" gained access to more than what they where supposed to? Aren't we supposed to be able to TRUST them to stick to what they where authorized to access even if they "accidentally" gained greater access? If we can't trust the FBI, who can we trust?

Re:Trust the FBI? (2, Interesting)

imipak (254310) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448496)

Glitch? Now where have I heard that word before...

Still, it's reassuring to know that cockup still beats conspiracy, given enough time and sufficient monkeys.

Re:Trust the FBI? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22448536)

Glitch? Now where have I heard that word before... Still, it's reassuring to know that cockup still beats conspiracy, given enough time and sufficient monkeys.
Speak English, please.

Re:Trust the FBI? (1)

mpe (36238) | more than 6 years ago | (#22451512)

Still, it's reassuring to know that cockup still beats conspiracy, given enough time and sufficient monkeys.

The problem is that there are too many "monkeys" in the first place. You fix a conspiracy by removing the conspirators, you fix a cockup by removing the incompetent.

Re:Trust the FBI? (1)

Darfeld (1147131) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448662)

Could be worst, they could have give access to a non-governmental organization... I wouldn't like a random company like say... Microsoft to have the control of my hotmail address...

Uh... wait a minute...

Something doesn't fit... (5, Funny)

AnotherUsername (966110) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448960)

Something is wrong here...I can't quite put my finger on it...

Wait a minute, that's it!

You're a spy! No self-respecting Slashdotter would willingly still have a Hotmail address! You're one of them!

Re:Something doesn't fit... (2, Funny)

UnderDark (869922) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449406)

The guy is a spy! Burn him! Burn him!

Re:Something doesn't fit... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22449684)

Re:Trust the FBI? (3, Insightful)

LilGuy (150110) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448794)

In my previous job I accidentally granted myself access as a domain administrator, not believing it would be so incredibly easy to do. That was grounds for firing, though they hung on to me, after I showed them I could also reset the passwords for anyone in the company using their in-house password utility.

The FBI will have no fear of any such consequence. Illegally overstepping their bounds and then saying "oops" is about all you'll hear about this ordeal. I'm sure some calls for investigation will be made and someone might have a dispassionate speech on C-SPAN and then it will all be swept under the rug. It might even pave the way for the FBI to request this type of access for the future if they can "prove" that it's in the interest of "national security".

Re:Trust the FBI? (5, Informative)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448894)

The FBI will have no fear of any such consequence. Illegally overstepping their bounds


This being Slashdot, I can probably assume that you didn't bother to RTFA before posting, but if you had, you'd have kept your foot out of your mouth. The FBI requested that an ISP send them copies of all email sent to one address at a small domain. The ISP screwed the pooch and sent them all email sent to that domain. The FBI noticed that they were getting way too much email, found out what had happened and corrected it. At no time did they overstep their bounds, because they only asked for what a judge said they were entitled to. I hope this makes enough sense to you that you can remove your tinfoil hat, but frankly, I doubt it.

Re:Trust the FBI? (0, Flamebait)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449076)

At no time did they overstep their bounds
You know this to be so? Or you blindly accept the word of the FBI that it is so? Which is it?

Re:Trust the FBI? (2, Interesting)

Artifakt (700173) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449628)

It's not blind acceptance if you have evidence. To believe the FBI is lying about this, you have to also believe that they have voluntarily come clean about a situation where they could have just hidden all the facts by merely never bringing them up. They would have to be both honest and exceptionally punctilious, doing their full duty in accordance with the law, when it comes to some points we actually know, and dishonest only on one of the points we can't directly verify.
        Yes, that's still possible, but since it leads to very complex plots that seem likely to unravel at the slightest glitch, or otherwise don't usually make a lot of sense, most of us figure the facts we observe support the FBI having played fair with the law, at least in this case. We extend them a certain amount of trust, because simply shutting up about the whole thing is a strategy a criminal organization would so likely use in a case such as this. That's not necessarily unlimited trust, but the action itself is definitely reasoned, not blind.
      If I see somebody wearing an orange shirt and carrying a lit flashlight, and he claims he wasn't out to sneak around in the dark, I'm not blindly accepting anything to believe him.

Re:Trust the FBI? (2, Insightful)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449636)

I RTFA, and found their claim reasonable under the circumstances. There didn't seem to be any reason for them to be interested in anybody's email other than that one person's, so why go to the extra effort of reading it?

Re:Trust the FBI? (1)

v1 (525388) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449668)

In a just world we'd be able to sue the ISP for breech of privacy.

Re:Trust the FBI? (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449788)

Oh, you could probably sue if your email was involved but I doubt you could win. You'd have to make the jury believe that the ISP probably intended to give the FBI emails it neither had a right to have nor had asked for, and that's going to be a tough job. Juries tend to be understanding when it comes to simple mistakes.

Re:Trust the FBI? (2, Insightful)

number11 (129686) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449698)

The ISP screwed the pooch and sent them all email sent to that domain. The FBI noticed that they were getting way too much email, found out what had happened and corrected it.

So, the users whose mail was wrongfully given to the FBI could sue the ISP, then. Oh wait, the FBI isn't going to tell them about it. It's not going to tell anyone what the domain is, or who the ISP is, either. State secret.

Re:Trust the FBI? (2, Insightful)

justinlee37 (993373) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450352)

So, the users whose mail was wrongfully given to the FBI could sue the ISP, then. Oh wait, the FBI isn't going to tell them about it. It's not going to tell anyone what the domain is, or who the ISP is, either. State secret.

That might tip off the person whose e-mail they were reading.

Re:Trust the FBI? (1)

number11 (129686) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450974)

That might tip off the person whose e-mail they were reading.

So are you saying that when the case is over (they bring charges or decide there wasn't anything there), they'll notify everyone who was inadvertently snooped? That then we'll see it in the news?

Note that the intelligence official quoted in TFA says it's not a rare occurrence, "it's common".

If you think they'll do that, I've got a bridge for sale that you might be interested in buying.

Re:Trust the FBI? (0, Flamebait)

Orion Blastar (457579) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449902)

What can you expect from overzealous left-wingers who scream "Impeach Bush" louder than anyone and refuse to read original articles like that one, and just adlib and pretend to have read them?

It was a mistake by the ISP, not the FBI. The FBI noticed the mistake and told the ISP how they had errored.

I mean if they really want to get upset, get mad at Bill Clinton for approving [wikipedia.org] that Carnivore project [wired.com] instead of vetoing it for the FBI so ISPs can keep track of email and send copies to the FBI in the first place. That is what started the whole warrentless wiretapping of emails and Internet surfing in the first place and lead to the commercial version of Carnivore which is what we call spyware now.

Re:Trust the FBI? (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450058)

But...but...but if they did that, they'd have to admit that Saint Bill Clinton did something they didn't like and that wouldn't fit in with their liberal mindset, now would it? Can't have anything like that happening, can we? After all we all know that the liberals do no wrong and the conservatives do nothing but wrong. Never mind the facts, that's what their liberal dogma says and that's what they have to believe!

Re:Trust the FBI? (2, Insightful)

FrkyD (545855) | more than 6 years ago | (#22451430)

Is it so hard to believe that there might be liberals who don't like what Bill Clinton did, don't trust what his wife would do and still manage to find most everything the Bush administration has done to be seriously screwed?

I know of at least one...

Re:Trust the FBI? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22449286)

I agree. The FBI should have access to any and all. That is not to say that they should rummage through any of it without a reason to do so. I don't see any problem unless one of their employees decided to be nosey. As long as someone is watching the watchers: no problems. And, it seems exactly that, the EFF is our watcher watchers.

Re:Trust the FBI? (1)

mpe (36238) | more than 6 years ago | (#22451490)

If we can't trust the FBI, who can we trust?

Ironically someone like UBL. You might not like his motives or goals, but at least he's honest about them.

Headline: Sysadmin fouls up filter (5, Insightful)

Jimithing DMB (29796) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448352)

Seriously. What's the story here? Some sysadmin who apparently didn't know what he was doing put the wrong thing in his e-mail server configuration and inadvertently sent all e-mail for the entire domain instead of e-mail for one address.

Mistakes happen all the time. The appropriate thing to look for is whether the mistake was caught and corrected in a timely fashion. It seems that the mistake was caught and corrected in a timely fashion which basically makes this a story about an everyday occurrence.

This story might make a good one for some sysadmin journal reminding sysadmins to document policies that help ensure mistakes do not happen and if they do are caught by the company itself instead of by the FBI. For example, a simple procedure would be to check the appropriate logs after changing the configuration to make sure the configuration is doing what it was intended to do.

Re:Headline: Sysadmin fouls up filter (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22448428)

I'll document the procedure in the company binder labeled "State Secrets" where we document all our routine warrentless wiretaps.

Re:Headline: Sysadmin fouls up filter (2, Insightful)

Jimithing DMB (29796) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448530)

Funny. Obviously it's not routine at all so the chances of making a mistake are even greater. You don't need to file it in some secret folder though. It's no secret at all that when the government produces a valid warrant you need to comply with it or be held in contempt of court. And if I were the sysadmin, I'd be looking through the e-mail myself, not just sending it to the government. If the government is that interested in it then something very wrong is most likely to be going on and I'd like to know about it if it's happening on my network.

Where I used to work we occasionally set up our own eavesdropping of mails. For example, when a top-level employee who no one trusted was about to be fired we archived all of his mail and put in some hooks so the big boss's could read all of it. Upon reading the guy's comments like "Man, I soaked these suckers for so much cash making them think I could sell their services" it only reaffirmed the big boss's decision to fire the guy for nonperformance.

Also very good just in case he tried to come back with some bogus suit about being unjustly fired. E-mail is not a private means of communication, particularly corporate e-mail.

Re:Headline: Sysadmin fouls up filter (1)

hattig (47930) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448590)

He sent email like that from his work account?

Wow, what a dumb fuck. Except he got paid loads until he was caught.

Hope the email is quoted in references for future potential employers.

Re:Headline: Sysadmin fouls up filter (1)

Jimithing DMB (29796) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448858)

Yes he did. And that was exactly the point of his e-mail. He got paid very well while we were paying him. I don't believe he landed us a single contract! He had the dubious honor of being one of maybe 2 or 3 people to be fired in the past decade.

As for references.. well, what can you do? Quoting that e-mail would potentially open up the company to a defamation suit so that's not an option. Not to mention that you don't really want to make it well-known that you hired a con man. As far as the company is concerned, they got rid of the guy and that alone is good enough. If someone else hires him, that's their problem.

Re:Headline: Sysadmin fouls up filter (1)

hattig (47930) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449132)

If someone else hires him, that's their problem.

Especially if they're a competitor ... :)

I guess this is why many "business development" roles have most of the wage in commission.

Re:Headline: Sysadmin fouls up filter (3, Insightful)

vertinox (846076) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448524)

Mistakes happen all the time. The appropriate thing to look for is whether the mistake was caught and corrected in a timely fashion. It seems that the mistake was caught and corrected in a timely fashion which basically makes this a story about an everyday occurrence.

I think the idea is if this happens once it could happen again without too much effort. There is no real oversight on how the FBI, NSA, DHS, or any other organization acquires information nor a transparent way to gather such data.

Now, I really don't see any malicious intent on the FBI with this since of the old adage "Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity." but I get the sinking feeling that they would often find themselves in situation in which they are too lazy to follow procedure and due process like maybe a warrant.

Re:Headline: Sysadmin fouls up filter (4, Informative)

Jimithing DMB (29796) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448678)

You did read the article right? It wasn't the FBI that screwed up. The FBI caught the mistake that the company's sysadmin made when setting up the eavesdropping.

Yes, it can happen again without too much effort. What are you going to do to fix it? Send the FBI in to set up the eavesdropping themselves so the sysadmin doesn't screw it up? Keep in mind we're talking about a run of the mill court-ordered warrant here. It's a very standard and very legal way to gather evidence. This story has very little if anything at all to do with post-9/11 surveillance or FISA or anything else that might be questionable or debatable. No where in the article does it say that the surveillance was set up as part of a FISA warrant which leads me to believe that the Times reporter is trying to feign a connection for scare value.

I hate to say it but I think the debate is pretty much closed on court-ordered warrants. If the court orders them and you don't have any legal argument to squash the order then you have to comply with it or be found in contempt of court. There's nothing really secretive about the process either, except ideally to the person who's being surveilled.

Re:Headline: Sysadmin fouls up filter (1)

chuckymonkey (1059244) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449090)

No point in arguing with a lot of the people around here, they have their tinfoil hats on so tight that it's cutting off circulation to the brain. After reading the article it looks like the FBI did the right thing and let the company know that it made a mistake, sure they had access to a lot more email than they wanted, but what would they do with all of it? The vast majority of email is boring and inane, the guys at the FBI know this and don't really care about all the cruft anyway. All that they want in the info that they asked for, anything more than that is making a lot more work for themselves than they need to. Remember, these guys are government employees and do the bare minimum necessary to get their paycheck at the end of the week unless it's high profile. Now don't get me wrong here, I think that FISA is really really really bad, anything handled within our borders without a warrant is wrong, but a simple mistake where all parties involved handled it approprietly is not the ZOMG! FB1 i5 5py1ng 0n u5! The records were destroyed (tinfoil will say "So they say") and the article throws massive spin on the article by bringing up FISA and a whole bunch of unrelated garbage to get people excited about this. It's not as interesting to just say Someone made mistake and the FBI received more data than they asked for. The data was destroyed, nothing else follows.

Re:Headline: Sysadmin fouls up filter (1)

schwaang (667808) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449578)

The story is that this kind of thing is inevitable (as an FBI source in the TFA says), yet it hasn't been part of the discussion we're having over the whole issue of wiretaps in the information technology era.

It's part of the price we're paying, and we need to know that if we're going to make informed decisions about a society as to what is acceptable.

[Of course, the fact is that regardless of this particular side-effect, there's ZERO legitimate democratic process happening around this topic anyway. But hey, that's just my opinion.]

Re:Headline: Sysadmin fouls up filter (2, Informative)

Jimithing DMB (29796) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450442)

Oh noes, some idiot sysadmin accidently sent my e-mail to the FBI. Someone call a congressional hearing.

If it's that confidential that someone else seeing it would be a serious problem, use encryption. There's no way they accidently get copies of your crypto keys. Better yet, don't send it in an e-mail, don't write it in a letter, and don't say it over the phone. If it really needs to be kept a secret, have a face to face meeting. If it doesn't need to be kept that much of a secret (and 99% of things don't) then some lackey at the FBI knowing about it is not going to be a problem.

Justice and Pragmatism (1)

mfh (56) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448394)

The truth is justice systems everywhere will often employ the corrupt tactics that the criminal mind would expound. The result is a fragmented one, stemming from the inability to deliver justice without the compromise of justice.

Tag (1)

arotenbe (1203922) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448410)

This ought to be tagged with "!amistake".

</conspiracy-theory>

Whose Glitch? (2, Insightful)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448418)

F.B.I. officials blamed an "apparent miscommunication" with the unnamed Internet provider, which mistakenly turned over all the e-mail from a small e-mail domain for which it served as host. The records were ultimately destroyed, officials said.


Whose "glitch"? What was the "apparent miscommunication, exactly? Did the FBI tell the ISP to give them the total access that the court hadn't authorized, or did the ISP make the mistake and give them total access when asked for only limited access? Maybe the FBI is citing that totally ambiguous blame, but what is the real story?

If the ISP screwed up, then it should get sued by the extra people whose mailboxes it turned over without authorization. If the FBI "screwed up", then it's just another example of why these courts cannot be secret if the government is to do its job protecting our rights - including protecting us from the government.

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448476)

According to the article...

A technical glitch gave the F.B.I. access to the e-mail messages from an entire computer network -- perhaps hundreds of accounts or more -- instead of simply the lone e-mail address that was approved by a secret intelligence court as part of a national security investigation, according to an internal report of the 2006 episode.

Later, F.B.I. officials blamed an "apparent miscommunication" with the unnamed Internet provider, which mistakenly turned over all the e-mail from a small e-mail domain for which it served as host. The records were ultimately destroyed, officials said.

The article seems to imply that the mistake was the ISP's. They "mistakenly" turned over too much, which makes it sound like they weren't ordered to do so.

Re:Whose Glitch? (2, Interesting)

fizzywhistle (1111353) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448604)

Interesting definitions. To me chatting up a 13 year old who turns out to be an FBI agent is a "apparent miscommunication". Spying on the wrong people in violation of a subpoena (I assume a judge ordered this) is not "miscommunication" if it also "technical glitch". It can be one or the other, but not likely both. Somebody dropped the ball. Yes, it is a big deal.
Imagine if a sysadmin "accidently" rerouted the companies email to their competitors (which might even be legal, if stupid)... Would the FBI accept an "opps" excuse from our afore mentioned "child predator"? I think not.

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448754)

Like I quoted myself in my post, the FBI implies it was the ISP, not the FBI. Especially with the current horrendous state of the FBI and the DoJ over it, especially in these domestic spying cases, the burden of proof is on the FBI to prove it was the ISP's mistake, not merely imply it to yet another credulous NY Times reporter.

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448988)

The article clearly states that the FBI noticed that they were getting way too much email from that warrant, found out what was happening and notified the ISP. If they'd intentionally asked for more than they were entitled to, they'd have kept their mouths shut, wouldn't they?

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449150)

No, not if they were afraid they'd get caught some other way. Which they weren't, not publicly, until the EFF filed its lawsuit, which could have found them out anyway. Telling the ISP, then managing the story, is standard CYA.

Until there's proof whose "glitch" this was, there's absolutely no sense "trusting the FBI" on this. Especially not this FBI, especially not in FISA matters, after their track record.

And especially not in America, which was built on not trusting the government.

Re:Whose Glitch? (2, Insightful)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449654)

Telling the ISP also what they'd do if they were telling the truth. And, "managing the story," as you call it, is just good public relations. You seem to have decided that no matter what happens, or what is uncovered, the FBI is at fault, and interpret everything from that POV. I, OTOH, see no reason, yet, to disbelieve them, but I'll look at any new evidence with more of an open mind than you appear to have on this subject.

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450538)

No, I'm just being reasonable. I am debunking what was offered as certainty that the FBI was operating clean, which is far from certain, since we have only the FBI's assertion.

I have an open mind to evidence. My head just doesn't have the kinds of holes that allows it to speculate that the current FBI will tell the truth when it's caught violating people's privacy rights. With the mountain of evidence against that in so many other cases, a mind that open is really just a spy's dream.

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450828)

No, I'm just being reasonable. I am debunking what was offered as certainty that the FBI was operating clean


And you're trying to replace it with an assertion that they were acting improperly; an assertion, I might add, for which you offer no evidence.

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 6 years ago | (#22452870)

No. You are indulging in the false dilemma [wikipedia.org] fallacy. I am saying that the FBI's story cannot be just taken as the facts.

Like when I said [slashdot.org] "Until there's proof whose "glitch" this was, there's absolutely no sense "trusting the FBI" on this."
Or when I said [slashdot.org]

Whose "glitch"? What was the "apparent miscommunication, exactly? Did the FBI tell the ISP to give them the total access that the court hadn't authorized, or did the ISP make the mistake and give them total access when asked for only limited access? Maybe the FBI is citing that totally ambiguous blame, but what is the real story?

If the ISP screwed up, then it should get sued by the extra people whose mailboxes it turned over without authorization. If the FBI "screwed up", then it's just another example of why these courts cannot be secret if the government is to do its job protecting our rights - including protecting us from the government.

which is what you started disputing.

I am putting down the idea that the FBI's assertion, without any evidence or even the story from the ISP, can excuse the FBI. Now you are saying that I am saying the FBI must be guilty, which I am not: a strawman [wikipedia.org] created from a false dilemma that I didn't propose: you did.

You're clearly biased in favor of the FBI. I am biased in favor of looking at the evidence. So I want to know: who did you vote for in 2004?

Re:Whose Glitch? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22449020)

the more i read slashdot, the more fustrated i get.

                  Here's a story with a really compelling topic and just a few facts. now begin insinuating to your heart's content ..... and oh yea, don't forget the usual punch lines:

                                        (1) the administration can't do anything right (which i feel is true atleast 80-85% of the time, i'm just saying every story
                                                                                                                                                            somehow helps slashdot commentators reach this conclusion)
                                        (2) geek pride

                                        (3) at this very moment, some business somewhere is working to screw over some group of consumers (and this is ultimately the
                                                                                                                consequence of microsoft being a bad role model)

                                          and on and on...........
                Everytime i read an article, i feel like i'm data mining for that one comment that isn't some arrogant blathering but a thoughtful dissection of the issues. And then i wonder, was it worth sifting through all the crap to find it? either way, i'll be back doing it again tomm.

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

SeaFox (739806) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449136)

Whose "glitch"? What was the "apparent miscommunication, exactly? Did the FBI tell the ISP to give them the total access that the court hadn't authorized, or did the ISP make the mistake and give them total access when asked for only limited access? Maybe the FBI is citing that totally ambiguous blame, but what is the real story?


Two important questions here:
  • If the ISP actually misunderstood the surveillance request, why didn't they get confirmation? Asking for one person's email to be sent is one thing, but a request for the entire domain's email to be forwarded sounds too broad to be legitimate.

  • When the FBI found they were getting email from individuals other than those they wanted. Did they promptly delete the email unread and report to the admin? Or did they think, "Hmmmm. Well, since we're already getting it..."

Neither question is important (2, Interesting)

ShinmaWa (449201) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449600)

Two important questions here:
Actually, neither of them are important.

If the ISP actually misunderstood the surveillance request, why didn't they get confirmation? Asking for one person's email to be sent is one thing, but a request for the entire domain's email to be forwarded sounds too broad to be legitimate.
It sounded to me, from reading TFA, that it was an accident on the part of the ISP. The FBI didn't ask for it.

When the FBI found they were getting email from individuals other than those they wanted. Did they promptly delete the email unread and report to the admin? Or did they think, "Hmmmm. Well, since we're already getting it..."
...and anything they read in there would be inadmissible in court since it wasn't obtained from a proper warrant. So why bother?

The truth is that FBI agents are actually very, very busy people. They are often working a bunch of cases at once and they don't have enough time to go on illegal fishing expeditions that wouldn't be admissible in court anyway. It is almost certain that the FBI agents not only didn't read the email they weren't looking for, but actively stopped the problem and got rid of the excess because sifting through a mountain of crap would only hinder their investigation. In either case, the FBI did report the issue to both the court AND their executive oversight (that would be 2 branches of government).

You can wear your tinfoil hat if you want, but it really seems to me that the FBI didn't ask for it, didn't want it, stopped it when they noticed it, and reported the issue to the proper oversight authorities. I'm just not seeing a scandal here.

Re:Neither question is important (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450492)

You're right - if you just take the FBI at it's word. Why on Earth would you do that? As far as I can tell from that article, the reporter didn't even ask the ISP what happened, "because the FBI won't identify it". How convenient.

You can chant "tinfoil hat" all you want. The FBI is the one which the evidence shows actually had a lot of spying that it wasn't entitled to. Let's see its evidence that it was the ISP before giving that agency any benefit of the doubt.

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

mikael (484) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449160)

Whose "glitch"? What was the "apparent miscommunication, exactly? Did the FBI tell the ISP to give them the total access that the court hadn't authorized, or did the ISP make the mistake and give them total access when asked for only limited access? Maybe the FBI is citing that totally ambiguous blame, but what is the real story?

Some companies (like dyndns.org) allow people to manage their own DNS records for dynamically assigned IP addresses from cable networks. You basically choose a generic domain like "homelinux.org" and then add your hostname and IP address eg. "mydothomelinux.homelinux.org". All E-mail to this full domain path will be sent to your selected IP address.

Now, if the FBI say to the ISP, 'monitor "mydothomelinux.homelinux.org" please', they get the E-mails of that recipient. But if they say to the ISP, 'monitor "homelinux.org" please', they get the whole bunch of E-mails to everyone in that domain...

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450522)

That is exactly why the 4th Amendment says "and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." If the FBI got the scope wrong, the question is when. If it got it wrong after getting it right in the FISA warrant, then the FBI just violated the warrant, too. If the warrant asked for the larger scope, then the FISA Court that granted it violated the rights of the rest of those people (put up to it by the FBI). Which is why a secret court that's entitled to violate the 4th Amendment, that grants 99% of all warrants asked for, is unacceptable. If the ISP gave more than the warrant asked for, then the ISP is facing a rather steep liability.

We need to see the evidence of who did the "glitch". I bet it was the FBI.

Re:Whose Glitch? (2, Interesting)

Trick414 (1207098) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450062)

This doesn't appear to be a FISA letter, so the FBI didn't "tell" the ISP to do anything the court hadn't authorized. Ok, sue the ISP. For all the harm it did you. The FBI got some records it didn't request in a lawful court order and it told the organization it requested the records from. The FBI may or may not have read every single one of the emails that it got unlawfully, but until they try to prosecute someone on those records it is a non-event. There is no story here. I have been reading /. for the last several years and finally decided to register. I really like the tech articles, but the whole tin-foil thing just has to go away.

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450560)

How do you know that the FBI didn't give the ISP a different scope to tap than the FISA Court authorized? There's no evidence of either the court order or the instructions to the ISP.

You're just another coincidence theorist. Haven't you noticed what the FBI has been caught doing in this area already, despite the most secretive presidency in history? Don't you value your rights more than you value reading nerd tech porn?

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

Trick414 (1207098) | more than 6 years ago | (#22452740)

I'd be willing to be believe that something like that was possible. But, not when the FBI is the one telling the world about it. I do value my rights, and I don't agree with everything this presidency has done. But that doesn't mean that every single little thing the goverment does is some kind of conspiracy or abuse. I don't know, I guess I'm just not seeing it the way you are. The FBI asked for X, they got X+Y, they told the supplier they got too much and gave it back. Big deal.

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 6 years ago | (#22452824)

You don't know what the FBI asked for, but you're insisting they asked for less than they got. That's unreasonable.

It's not true that "every single little thing the goverment does is some kind of conspiracy or abuse", but it's also true that there have been many abuses and coverups. Very specifically at the FBI while spying on domestic communications. This would be just one more example of something already proven. And the way you know that this is not an example of that is... the NY Times was told by the FBI. And didn't even get the ISP to agree or disagree with that story - because the ISP's identity is "secret". Which fits the exact pattern of abuse this government has repeated time and again.

You "don't agree with everything this presidency has done", OK. Just say it: you voted for Bush. You voted for Bush in 2004, even after seeing what he did 2000-2004, and you wanted more. Now that it's obvious Bush is a criminal, everyone's saying it, you've got one foot on the bandwagon when you're admit it. But still you think that you can just take the FBI's word for it.

You don't value your rights. You value being on the side that's "winning", and value whatever greedy profit you expected from Bush, or whatever fear he stoked in you. Because if you valued your rights, you'd wake up already, after at least three quarters of your fellow Americans have awakened, to see that you can't just give Bush and his FBI the benefit of the doubt. That's a big deal. And if you were honest with yourself, you'd see that your part in making it a big deal is a big deal indeed.

Re:Whose Glitch? (1)

Trick414 (1207098) | more than 6 years ago | (#22452952)

I also voted for Clinton in the 90's. I didn't agree with everything his administration did, either. But, you have me completely figured out, so I'm going to let this die. I admire your desire to not be politically correct and state your mind. There are such things as tact and class, though.

History Records Many Glitches (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22448482)

Google: "A break-in to end all break-ins"

"Thirty-five years ago today, a group of anonymous activists broke into the small, ... The Citizens' Commission to Investigate the FBI, as the group called itself, ..."

What I want to know (3, Interesting)

causality (777677) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448692)

A hundred or more accounts may have been accessed, rather than 'the lone e-mail address' that was approved by a secret intelligence court as part of a national security investigation.

When I read this, I wasn't wondering how that happened, or what the nature of the "glitch" was, or how many accounts were accessed. What I was wondering is WHY THE FUCK DOES THE UNITED STATES HAVE A SECRET COURT OF ANY KIND?!?!. Yeah yeah, to protect the children, save the whales, stop the terrorists, keep you safe, "our intentions are pure and we're really a bunch of big-hearted individuals who care about your well-being" etc... I still don't know what is wrong with the assholes who actually believe this shit.

And hell, I want to believe we have a good, honest government. The fact is, we don't. I don't understand what being in this level of denial is supposed to do to remedy the situation. There is a very good reason why the founding fathers intended for most of our interaction with government to come from the local and state level. The only thing the federal government can do that the state & local governments cannot do is resolve disputes between states, conduct foreign policy, regulate interstate trade, oh and it can slowly become a dictatorship too. Speaking of remedies, I'm betting that nothing will happen either to the FBI as an organization or to the individuals who made this "mistake", that at most they will receive a slap-on-the-wrist.

Re:What I want to know (4, Interesting)

nguy (1207026) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448788)

What I was wondering is WHY THE FUCK DOES THE UNITED STATES HAVE A SECRET COURT OF ANY KIND?!?!.

This is not a "secret court" in the sense of a court that sends people to prison (the US has those, too, but they are still limited to the military and Guantanamo). Rather, it's a court that acts as an additional control for police and secret service actions.

Such a "secret court" is a good thing, because it provides judicial review for actions that would otherwise not be subject to judicial review at all.

Re:What I want to know (5, Insightful)

achbed (97139) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448936)

Such a "secret court" is a good thing, because it provides the appearance of judicial review for actions that would otherwise not be subject to judicial review at all.

Fixed that for you.

Check out the denial records of that court since the 70s. That should tell you just how detailed the FISA rubber stamp looks at those warrant petitions.

Re:What I want to know (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22449556)

Or, perhaps, it's because the FBI agents get bitchslapped when they request a warrant which isn't legally valid, and the clerks are pretty good about sending back the sketchy ones before the FBI gets bitchslapped by the FISA judge. Oh, yeah, by the way, getting a warrant denied is a career limiting move. But what the fuck do I know, I'm in the intel business, not the conspiracy business.

Re:What I want to know (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22449606)

Check out the denial records of that court since the 70s. That should tell you just how detailed the FISA rubber stamp looks at those warrant petitions.

Exactly.

Look at the govt's arguments about how "onerous" the FISA process was, leading the govt to take the law into their own hands with the warrantless wiretapping.

The goddamned law provided for immediate initiation of wiretaps, with documentation to follow in three days -- more if requested. But that wasn't enough for The Bush bastard's bully boys -- they just did their own thing and to hell with the court. No matter how loose you make the process, these fucks will still consider it a pain in the ass and blow the law off. And the shits will get away with it every goddamned time. They've already proven that.

So, citizen, it you think you have any rights, just kneel before me, open your mouth and I'll force my cock down your throat to disabuse you of such quaint notions.

stupid (1)

nguy (1207026) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450218)

Your comment is missing the point. I was simply explaining that it's reasonable to have this kind of court be secret because the GP was concerned about the existence of secret courts.

Now, we can have a separate discussion about whether this secret court is working.

Check out the denial records of that court since the 70s. That should tell you just how detailed the FISA rubber stamp looks at those warrant petitions.

OK, well, note that there is a record, and that we can actually see whether the court is working well based on that record. That's a start.

Now, the FISA court may not be working very well. Why is that? Because of the judges that make it up are quite cozy with the executive, including the president, the military, and police. And why is that? Because that's the kind of judges that get appointed at the federal level by the right-wing law-and-order politicians that Americans elect.

So, the fact that the FISA and similar courts exist in the first place is a good thing: it means that there is at least the potential for oversight and that there is a paper trail. Now, we just need to get judges with backbone in there. That will take a while, but sooner or later it's going to happen. Don't move us backwards by complaining about the institution of the FISA court simply because it happens to be staffed with the wrong people right now.

NICE TRY "nguy" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22451438)

You say:

"I was simply explaining that it's reasonable to have this kind of court be secret because the GP was concerned about the existence of secret courts. Now, we can have a separate discussion about whether this secret court is working."


Sorry, but that WASN'T a separate discussion when you made your original argument for a secret court. Your attempted rationalization for the secret court DEPENDED on what you now claim should be a "separate discussion":

"Such a "secret court" is a good thing, because it provides judicial review"


Nice try, nguy :(

Re:NICE TRY "nguy" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22451506)

Your attempted rationalization for the secret court DEPENDED on what you now claim should be a "separate discussion":

Only a moron like you would conclude that.

Re:What I want to know (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22451834)

The denial record is so low because the process the FBI has to go through to even get to the FISA court is so drawn out and has so many levels of oversite that the trivial or invalid requests are culled before the FISA court gets a chance to deny them. These warrant applications are probably the most carefully checked items in the FBI.

Re:What I want to know (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22449546)

Such a "secret court" is a good thing, because it provides judicial review for actions that would otherwise not be subject to judicial review at all.

If you're referring to the FISA court, it provides nothing of the kind.

In it's first few tears of operation, it failed to approve only eight of some 60,000 requests. Four of those were approved on subsequent re-submission, "with fuller documentation of need". They're nothing but a bunch of quislings with rubber stamps.

Do you really believe the govt submitted nearly 60K perfect requests? If they did, then they could better employ those fabulous prosecutors in investigating corporate fraud, especially in military contracts.

What would you think of an election where the winner got all but 8 out of 60K votes. Even Jimmy Carter would find fault with results that lopsided.

Re:What I want to know (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22449402)

WHY THE FUCK DOES THE UNITED STATES HAVE A SECRET COURT OF ANY KIND?!?!.

Hey, 1978 called and asks WHY THE FUCK WASN'T ANYONE ASKING THAT QUESTION BACK WHEN IT WOULD'VE MATTERED?!?! THANKS JIMMY AND THE DEMOCRATIC MAJORITY CONTROLLED 95TH CONGRESS. THANKS ALOT, YOU FASCIST ENABLING MOFOS!

Mistakes happen but only continue to happen... (2, Insightful)

3seas (184403) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448886)

... when you let it continue to happen.

"But an intelligence official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because surveillance operations are classified, said: "It's inevitable that these things will happen. It's not weekly, but it's common."

This falls into the area of cheating in a manner that an excuse can be used to "get away with it". This sort of cheating had been labeled "Neo-cheating" and is a form of dishonesty that is easy to apply and safe from proof.. "Oh it was just an honest mistake." Technology should not be an escape goat for such obvious deceptions.

To give a simple example of a verification loop, when you sign up for a mailing list, messages boards, etc., in order to prevent spamming email accounts etc, there is a feedlack verification loop used. The point is, there are ways to prevent such spying "mistakes" from happening. And there should have already been such methods being applied as standard practice.

The "it's not weekly but its common" is nothing but evidence of intent to cheat and to continue it.

This "allowing deception" is similar electronic voting security failure vs. ATM financial security practices.

Computer technology is not an excuse, but a way for dishonest human intent to hide behind technology excuses.

   

Re:Mistakes happen but only continue to happen... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22450210)

Escape goats, the Houdini of the animal kingdom...

Re:Mistakes happen but only continue to happen... (1)

MulluskO (305219) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450544)

No, you're very wrong.
Reading the article, we learn that a lot of the mistakes come from third parties. Larger service providers are accustomed to this sort of thing, but smaller entities may never have done this sort of thing before. They have neither the equipment nor the experience. They may be working with new equipment sent to them that they don't really know how to use.
Furthermore, translating the requirements of a warrant into a set of filtering rules is as error prone as writing any code, and difficult to test until it is already deployed. The software doing the collecting may have problems, or 'features' you didn't know about. Mistakes are going to happen.
Proper execution of a warrant falls to human beings, not machines. If it is recognized that the filter was improperly applied on the first pass, a second pass may be made with a corrected filter. What does it matter if it is the first or second pass? A human wrote both filters, and there wasn't necessarily any more room for foul play on the second pass.

I guess what I'm trying to say is this, that the controls which protect your rights are necessarily procedural rather than technical. If only because technical controls are made by people.

What actually probably happened... (1)

DigitalisAkujin (846133) | more than 6 years ago | (#22448908)

The FBI hacked into an email service which happened to have the emails of one person they were investigating. Since in this type of attack you would simply hack into a service rather then the one account specifically, it gave access to the network.

Since the code design is reused for every account it's not like they can ever control such a thing. While technically the internet is simply facilitating communication the run away effect of improvement of software should take place. This is happening but security is usually slower to catch up. Expect these stories to fade out as organizations get more and more secure.

We are after all talking about simply a hack job..... it's not always possible to hack a target. Many people forget this, unfortunately.

Re:What actually probably happened... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22449342)

One statement: YOU ARE CORRECT, SIR. When hacking a system, albeit for one objective -- say to see who your girlfriend is cheating with -- you not only get the email, but the whole array of garbage. It might be upsetting to them that the whole array of garbage is collected for view, but honestly, who cares? You came with a mission, so the rest is just a waste of time. Forget it people, the FBI doesn't care about those other email craps... they just wanted to see who was cheating with their girlfriend.

Whose e-mails? (2, Insightful)

RealGrouchy (943109) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449252)

whose e-mail network was it that was revealed? Was it the NYT's network, or simply another one that they are reporting on?

(TFAS is ambiguous, and TFA is behind a login screen.)

Thanks,

- RG>

What we DON'T know (4, Interesting)

Baraka (35968) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449528)

  • which ISP was involved
  • how many individuals' accounts had their privacy compromised
  • how many messages were captured by the FBI's data vacuum cleaner
  • whether the messages were really destroyed or not (what does unspecified means mean?)
  • whether the FBI is even telling the truth or not
  • how many other times this kind of overproduction has occurred since 9/11

The writer of this article, Eric Lichtblau, won a shared Pulitzer Prize for his work in exposing the illegal warrantless wiretapping program, authorized by the government and championed by the White House after 9/11. In fact, it was in existence even before 9/11, but that's another story entirely.

This program supposedly expired just yesterday when congress let the clock run out on its dependent legislation. The problem here, clearly, is that it doesn't matter if this program is never renewed; overproduction of data under FISA will still happen all the time. That's the entire point of this article. There are no checks and balances. There is no accountability. There is NOTHING. Total secrecy and legal immunity are all but guaranteed for the perpetrators. Period.

Ok, seriously... (2, Interesting)

cjb658 (1235986) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449744)

...why do people still send sensitive email unencrypted?

Agreed, not a mistake. (1)

agent (7471) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449862)

And I will be "acciently" pulling a bunch of IP address from a server in my next crack.

I wonder how long before ... (2, Insightful)

saltydog56 (1135213) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449910)

I wonder how long before the government will require some sort of security clearance or background check on telecommunications workers and sysadmins on the basis that setting up these taps and email filters makes them privy to at least some of the details of who is being watched and why. What if any steps is the government taking to insure that the lowly sysadmin does not give the target of the investigation a heads up saying that they are being watched?

Too Much Access? (0)

killmofasta (460565) | more than 6 years ago | (#22449950)

"Jesus Bobby Swan! Looks like they gave us too much access!"

"So kay, We need all the Juice we can get on anybody. Grab everything you can."

"Ok. Is that your petty coat or mine?"

PATRIOT ACT (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22450096)

If the FBI was under a PATRIOT ACT warrent, then once they are on the box, they are allowed to look all over AND they get to use the data however they see fit. I am guessing that is exactly what happened here, or it will be said that it was. If so, then this should be used as part of the reasoning on how to kill PATRIOT Act.

what? (1)

glitch23 (557124) | more than 6 years ago | (#22450692)

"The New York Times reports that 'glitch' gave the F.B.I. access to the e-mail messages from an entire computer network.

I did no such thing. I swear. Oh, whew, this must have been glitch #1.

The lesson (0, Troll)

jgoemat (565882) | more than 6 years ago | (#22451398)

This just goes to show that the FBI and other law enforcement agencies will do ANYTHING that they are allowed to do. Give them an inch and they'll take a mile. They will abuse the authority and law enforcement tools given to them until they are finally reigned in. Look how they are using tazers to tame nonviolent drunks. They are basically torturing our own citizens into submitting to 'authority' now. That is unacceptable to me. This is why we shouldn't have a national ID card. This is why the mislabeled 'patriot' act was a bad idea. This is why we shouldn't have a national DNA database. This is why you should not submit to being fingerprinted or having your DNA taken unless they have a warrant. Sure it is only to 'help' their investigation, but the only way it would really help is if they found or planted a match. Cops will search through your trash. They will follow you for days waiting for you to discard a coffee cup so they can get your DNA. Watch Forensic Files or Law and Order. Those shows probably paint a rosy picture compared to the dirty underbelly of real law enforcement.

Re:The lesson (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22452556)

WTF are you talking about? They requested email to be forwarded to them from one specific account, and the ISP accidentally forwarded the email to them from all accounts on the domain. This isn't like the ISP gave them access to their server room and the FBI went rummaging through other servers and accounts.

ALL e-mail is spied on, ALL the time. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22452896)

What a total nonsense. The government and local spy organizations in every little town have full access to EVERYONE'S e-mail and web browsing at ALL times, in REAL TIME. The mainstream media puts out silly articles like this to make people believe there is still some kind of privacy today. Don't believe a word of it. This is not conspiracy theory, this is HOW IT IS today.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>