More government tracking of Americans’ phone activity revealed

More government tracking of Americans’ phone activity revealed
Another secret program where the US government compiled and stored mountains of call data was revealed in a filing related to a case alleging a man was attempting to illegally export electronic equipment to Iran.

In the filing, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), stated that it used “administrative subpoenas” to gather meta-data of US based calls to foreign countries “that were determined to have a demonstrated nexus to international drug trafficking and related criminal activities.”

As to which foreign countries were on the list was not revealed, but the DEA did grant that Iran was one of those nations. The filing outlines outgoing call activity, but the program also gathered data of incoming calls to the US from foreign exchanges.

The data collection for this program began in the 1990s and was shut down in August 2013, with the DEA saying that it no longer collects bulk records and that the database has since been deleted.

Naturally, civil liberties and privacy advocates are not pleased with the revelation of this news. Patrick Toomey of the ACLU says this activity proves “the government has extended its use of bulk collection far beyond” terrorism and national security investigations.

The DEA embarked on this program following what could be argued as unintended consequences from a laws passed by Congress to empower the agency in the so-called “war on drugs.” However, it is being argued that the DEA has pushed the envelope away from what was intended to be “specific, targeted requests for information” and instead turned things into a dragnet of data collection.

source: The Wall Street Journal

FEATURED VIDEO

14 Comments

1. ilovephablets

Posts: 45; Member since: Dec 08, 2014

Illuminati

8. fuhrer

Posts: 39; Member since: Apr 29, 2013

New world order

2. HugoBarraCyanogenmod

Posts: 1412; Member since: Jul 06, 2014

Land of freedom they said, It would be fun they said

3. Busyboy

Posts: 731; Member since: Jan 07, 2015

Yup. 9/11 happened because "terrorists" hate America's freedom. I guess the terrorists won.

6. Neo_Huang

Posts: 1067; Member since: Dec 06, 2013

Do you think that the government staged 9/11 in order to gain more power?

9. xondk

Posts: 1904; Member since: Mar 25, 2014

While I am skeptical about conspiracy theories, the one's surrounding 9/11 seem to have significant more meat on the bones then say "We never landed on the moon" type. And there are inconsistencies surrounding 9/11 for example the 7 World Trade Center that collapsed as well, there's been bigger fires in other tower buildings without them collapsing, and the cut metal from possible termite? Makes you wonder, though of course could also just be that the buildings were badly build?

13. Chuck007

Posts: 1410; Member since: Mar 02, 2014

The buildings collapsed because of plans hitting the buildings at high speeds that lead to subsequent fires. As for the conspiracy theories, just think about it for a minute. What do they stand to gain by making themselves vulnerable to the world? Attacking their "economic base" above all things? They were seen as omnipotent before the attacks. Now they are seen as any other country that'll eventually fall. Besides, if the attacks didn't happen China wouldn't have stood the chance of eclipsing their economy so relatively easily. Doesn't take Einstein to realize that and the American government ain't idiots. Have to agree with the OP though. I've said it since the beginning. America is no longer the land of the free because the terrorists won.

14. justForTheRecord

Posts: 51; Member since: Jan 17, 2015

Technically, the building design had accounted for fires in general ... but not the much hotter fires from aviation fuel; which eventually overcame the insulation material -- which would have survived a normal building fire IMHO -- allowing the heat to attack the fasteners and structural members directly. This was brought out in a PBS telecast years ago.

15. xondk

Posts: 1904; Member since: Mar 25, 2014

I totally agree, though I would say that it was already eroding back then, (though I may be wrong) america at least to europe had become 'meh' at the time. And then came the whole terrorist/world safety thing. And just want to point out that that buildings like that are build to handle the fires and remain structurally intact, yet for some reason they did not?, and from what you can read they should have handled the airplane hits themselves without any major structural problems. That said, I really cannot imagine a country would do that to its own citizens, so my thoughts is that maybe the center was shoddy built. And governments generally aren't idiots nope, but they are human and predicting the consequences of one thing thing 13 years into the future is tricky, the whole NSA thing for one, was just a bomb waiting to blow up, and it did.

10. ilovephablets

Posts: 45; Member since: Dec 08, 2014

They did 9/11 to go destroy and steal oil from other countries.

4. Drsarcastic

Posts: 136; Member since: Jul 23, 2014

How the hell is this news?

5. theguy2345

Posts: 1216; Member since: Jun 24, 2014

As long as they stopped this practice, I feel good. Now if the government were to stop all the spying that'd be great.

7. JMartin22

Posts: 2327; Member since: Apr 30, 2013

The Government has been monitoring telecommunications since before any of us are born, almost all countries with an established form of governing body does this. It's just not politically savvy to make it known. But that's the world we live in, one that is dangerous and fueled by ideological extremism. Security will always take precedence over all else. Especially in countries that have historical enemies. Learn to deal with it, because that's always been the norm under the radar.

12. justForTheRecord

Posts: 51; Member since: Jan 17, 2015

ROTF LMBO This "oh woe is us" jibber jabber from the same crowd posting selfies, junk shots, pictures of the kids / pets / the ex / vacation plans / etc. on Facebook and Twizzler. Give me a break. If you use anything electronic with a keyboard or a mouse or a touch screen, or you drive, or own any property, you are already "in the system" and can be located and tracked at any time by anyone with the motivation to do so. Why do you think crooks and terrorists buy burner phones with cash and go to extraordinary lengths to disguise their on-line presence. They know it isn't that they'll get tracked, just how soon it will happen. As for the ACLU, Chapter 16 of Seeds of Deception (2004, Georgiana Preskar) pretty much spells it out in plain English.

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at https://www.parsintl.com/phonearena or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit https://www.parsintl.com/ for samples and additional information.