Wiretap Applications Drop 14% in 2008
The report on 2008 wiretaps has just been released. Of the 1,891 applications, none were denied. Applications dropped by 14% this year. 95% of those granted were for cell phones and portable devices. A whopping 84% were in drug cases. The full report is available here (pdf) and the tables here.
A total of 1,891 applications to federal and state judges for orders authorizing the interception of wire, oral or electronic communications were reported in 2008. No applications were denied. This is a 14 percent decrease in the total of applications reported, compared to 2007. Fewer states—22 states compared to 24 in 2007—reported wiretap activity and the number of applications approved by state judges, 1,505, was down 14 percent from 2007. Federal judges approved 386 applications, down 16 percent from 2007.
The most common form of interceptions sought: Telephones (as opposed to oral (bugs) or solely electronic devices.) They accounted for 97% of the orders. As for cost: [More...]
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