FBI Pressuring Telecoms Companies To Install More Surveillance

/ 5 years ago


The FBI is applying pressure to American based telecommunications companies to install surveillance technology to assist the FBI’s ability to intercept pictures, texts, chat logs and other data – all in real time. The report by RT suggests that the Federal Bureau of Investigation has sought to convince online companies to install new, previously undisclosed software known as “port reader”.

This so called “port reader” software is known to be a harvesting program that can collect all data and data carriers have been cautious about it as it represents a huge privacy risk. That said if particular telecoms companies are unable to meet the demands of a court order to provide certain data then the FBI solution has to implemented.

In circumstances where a provider is unable to comply with a court order utilizing its own technical solution(s), law enforcement may offer to provide technical assistance to meet the obligation of the court order,” read an FBI statement.

The carriers and companies currently using this “port reader” software are not named. While the FBI claims its techniques are legal under the Patriot Act, the extent to which such techniques bend and sometimes even break other laws and the constitution is something many think the USA needs to have a public debate on.

Image courtesy of Reuters / Susanne Lindholm / Scanpix Sweden

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