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Date: 2003-08-12

FBI: VoIP wird ueberwacht

Nun soll es auch den "Mom and Pop Networks" von der Standardisierung der Überwachung her an den Kragen gehen. Auch Billigs/dorfer Husch und Pfusch Netzwerkerln für Spar/telefonierer haben dieselben automatisierten Überwachungs/auflagen wie die Großkopferten zu erfüllen.
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August 11, 2003

"Most ISPs are just mom-and-pop shops and not necessarily run by people who are extremely tech savvy," says Gartner research analyst Lydia Leong. "I am not sure they would be able to architect their networks to provide easy access to FBI requests."

The Federal Bureau of Investigation reportedly has met with senior officials from the Federal Communications Commissions twice in the last four weeks to push for expanded wiretapping laws that would cover VoIP technology and ISP services.

The FBI's authority in this area comes primarily from the 1994 Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA), which required digital phone applications -- then leading edge technology -- to be architected so law enforcement could better monitor activity on those networks.

At the time, though, Congress specifically exempted Internet Service Providers and other information technologies, such as Voice over Internet Protocol. But as increasing numbers of phone calls are made over those pipelines -- some estimates put worldwide calls on VoIP at 10 percent -- the FBI is worried that there are too many communication alternatives available to criminals and terrorists that wish to avoid detection. Calls made over the Internet, for example, are of particular concern.

The FBI's proposal calls for broadband companies to build standardized surveillance features in their applications, as well as better teeth in the compliance and enforcement laws, Gartner research analyst Lydia Leong told Newsfactor. "Basically, it wants CALEA to apply to the ISPs," she says.


There are significant privacy implications. Separating voice out from the data streams is unlikely, and given the technology, the FBI would have to have access to the full pipe --including e-mail, Web browsing and instant messaging. (The latter is actually another area of communication the FBI wants to be able to monitor.) Perhaps of greater concern to the ISPs and VoIP providers, though, is the fact that the FBI's proposals would add considerable cost burdens to their operations.


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edited by Harkank
published on: 2003-08-12
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