AT&T getting secret immunity from wiretapping laws
AT&T getting secret immunity from wiretapping laws for government surveillance | The Verge: "Internal government documents obtained by the Electronic Privacy Information Centerhave revealed that the US Department of Justice is secretly helping AT&T and other service providers evade wiretapping laws so that the US government can conduct surveillance on parts of their networks. The legal immunity comes from authorizations granted by the Justice Department through special "2511" letters that absolve carriers in the event that the surveillance is found to run afoul of federal law. The authorization program began as a narrow cybersecurity effort to monitor government defense contractors, but has been expanded to cover critical infrastructure like energy, finance, and health care, CNET reports. Normally, the Wiretap Act prohibits such eavesdropping, unless it's necessary to the functioning of the service or unless the user gives his or her consent to be monitored. EPIC's executive director Mark Rotenberg says "Alarm bells should be going off." . . ."