Captain Corruption\'s Commentary

Thursday, May 11, 2006

NSA at it again

According to USA Today Big Brother continues watching. Apparently our friends in the have been hoarding phone call data provided to them by , , and , the nations three largest telecom companies.

Now now now, before you go screaming about yet another unconstitutional intrusion into your by this administration remember what they're response is going to be... 9-11 lets us do anything we want. So don't bother with the administration on this one.

See, there's this little law, Section 222 of the Communications Act, that forbids the phone companies from releasing this information. Quoting the USA Today article:

Under Section 222 of the Communications Act, first passed in 1934, telephone companies are prohibited from giving out information regarding their customers' calling habits: whom a person calls, how often and what routes those calls take to reach their final destination. Inbound calls, as well as wireless calls, also are covered.

The financial penalties for violating Section 222, one of many privacy reinforcements that have been added to the law over the years, can be stiff. The Federal Communications Commission, the nation's top telecommunications regulatory agency, can levy fines of up to $130,000 per day per violation, with a cap of $1.325 million per violation. The FCC has no hard definition of "violation." In practice, that means a single "violation" could cover one customer or 1 million.


Seems clear to me that AT+T, Verizon and Bell South are breaking the law AND violating their customer's privacy. If you are a customer contact your telecom provider and insist that they cease this law breaking immediately. Contact your state's Attorney General and insist that he bring charges to bear.

Oh sure, I think its yet another horrible intrusion by the administration into the civil liberties that make our nation great, but its also a clear violation of the law by a handfull of powerful corporations who need our money to maintain their profit level. Bush is a lame duck and could care less about your vote. AT+T, however, sicks telemarketers on you all the time. Time to hold them accountable!

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