Tag Archives: United States Department of Justice

Google: Our transparency reports aren’t enough; blame the U.S. government


By Zack Whittaker – Google isn’t happy. Not one bit.

The U.S. government has over the last three years doubled its requests for Google customer data, the search and Internet giant said in a blog post on Thursday (Nov 14).

The company displayed four important slides to reference the U.S. government’s activities over the past four years: three of which show the extent of attempted government surveillance through “legal” means, and one that is entirely redacted. more> http://tinyurl.com/ne3qoxa

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U.S. Law Enforcement Is Tracking Who Calls, Texts And Emails Whom More Often Than Ever Before


By Andy Greenberg – Documents obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union through a Freedom of Information Act Requirement and released Thursday (Sep 27) show a massive spike in “non-content” surveillance by federal law enforcement over the last two years, jumping 60% from 23,535 cases in 2009 to 37,616 in 2011. Those “pen register” and “trap and trace” orders, which watch only who a surveillance target communicates with rather than the content of his or her communications and therefore don’t require a warrant, were aimed at more than 80,000 Americans in 2011, a spike that means more Americans’ communications were watched by this type of communication in the last two years than in the entire previous decade, according to the ACLU’s count. more> http://tinyurl.com/busvldv

Verizon offers two defenses of indefensible $5 fee


By Paul McNamara – Of course, the real reason Verizon charges this $5 fee is because they can and people like me will pay. It’s that simple, although not according to Verizon.

Here’s what I asked both Verizon departments,

“Why do you charge me $4.95 per month just so that I can keep my phone number unpublished? Please do not merely tell me that you are allowed to charge me this fee because I already know that. What I want to know is WHY do you do it? What cost are you passing along? I can understand that when I first asked for an unpublished number there may have been some truly minor administrative cost associated with fulfilling my request, but that was six years ago now and since then you have collected some $360 from me for this service. I would appreciate as much specificity in your reply as possible.”

more> http://tinyurl.com/c9h8qan

Banks in Libor probe consider group settlement


By Katharina Bart and Diane Bartz – A group of banks being investigated in an interest-rate rigging scandal are looking to pursue a group settlement with regulators rather than face a Barclays-style backlash by going it alone.

The sources told Reuters that none of the banks involved now want to be second in line for fear that they will get similarly hostile treatment from politicians and the public.

Earlier this year, five top U.S. banks negotiated a $25 billion settlement with the U.S. Justice Department and other federal and state agencies to resolve allegations of mortgage services abuses. more> http://tinyurl.com/cemm6z3