AP: Police Got Phone Data From Brokers

Clearly, today is my day to be enraged. Here’s the latest news that’s got me stomping around the office.

AP: Police Got Phone Data From Brokers

Published: June 20, 2006
Filed at 6:43 a.m. ET

WASHINGTON (AP) — Numerous federal and local law enforcement agencies have bypassed subpoenas and warrants designed to protect civil liberties and gathered Americans’ personal telephone records from private-sector data brokers.

These brokers, many of whom advertise aggressively on the Internet, have gotten into customer accounts online, tricked phone companies into revealing information and even acknowledged that their practices violate laws, according to documents gathered by congressional investigators and provided to The Associated Press.

The law enforcement agencies include offices in the Homeland Security Department and Justice Department — including the FBI and U.S. Marshal’s Service — and municipal police departments in California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia and Utah. Experts believe hundreds of other departments frequently use such services. rest of article

There’s another, more in-depth article on the subject on MSNBC.

So these data brokers obtain this information in a fashion that is likely illegal. They give cops free access to this data so the cops can avoid having to get a subpoena for this information. Hmmm, I wonder if the cops will be likely to investigate the illegal methods these brokers use?

1 thought on “AP: Police Got Phone Data From Brokers

  1. I’m sure they can use the Bush defense: “It’s legal. I’ve talked to my people, and they tell me it’s legal.”

    If people buy it from the president, why not from law enforcement? Too many people will say “they’re keeping us safe” and just don’t give a damn what it means about the state of the country or the future of civil liberties in this country.

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