Verizon Turned Over Customer Records Without Court Order
The phone companies have responded to the request by the House Committee on Energy and Commerce for information about their participation in the NSA warrantless wiretapping program.
Verizon admits it supplied hundreds of its customers' records to the agency without a court order.
Verizon also disclosed that the FBI, using administrative subpoenas, sought information identifying not just a person making a call, but all the people that customer called, as well as the people those people called. Verizon does not keep data on this "two-generation community of interest" for customers, but the request highlights the broad reach of the government's quest for data.
....From January 2005 to September 2007, Verizon provided data to federal authorities on an emergency basis 720 times, it said in the letter. The records included Internet protocol addresses as well as phone data. In that period, Verizon turned over information a total of 94,000 times to federal authorities armed with a subpoena or court order, the letter said. The information was used for a range of criminal investigations, including kidnapping and child-predator cases and counter-terrorism investigations.
Verizon's excuse: It's not its job to second guess the Government.
Turns out, the FBI wanted even more information than Verizon was able to provide.
Verizon said it had received FBI administrative subpoenas, called national security letters, requesting data that would "identify a calling circle" for subscribers' telephone numbers, including people contacted by the people contacted by the subscriber. Verizon said it does not keep such information.
The Committee's press release is here.
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