Cell carriers see dramatic increase in surveillance requests2012.07.09 09:04 by Daniela
Wireless carriers have received 1.3 million requests last year for information on subscribers such as text messages, caller locations, and other details over the course of various investigations. The companies turn over thousands of records daily in response to police investigations, subpoenas, court orders, and other police emergencies. The information was provided by nine different cell phone carriers, including major companies such as AT&T.
The information represents the first time data have been collected nationally on the frequency of cell surveillance by law enforcement. The volume of the requests reported by the carriers — which most likely involve several million subscribers — even surprised some officials who have closely followed the growth of cell surveillance.
To handle the demands, most cell carriers reported employing large teams of in-house lawyers, data technicians, phone "cloning specialists" and others around the clock to take requests from law enforcement agencies, review the legality and provide the data.
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