Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Oh, Yes. They're Spying on You

We re-discovered the Spingola Files a while ago and thankfully, he's writing more often.

...The most visible sign of domestic spying initiatives are the millions of cameras posted along interstate highways, mounted on poles at key intersections, or those little white boxes containing cameras found, in some instances, every mile on stretches of southeastern Wisconsin freeways.  This data is recorded and archived by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation’s State Traffic Operations Center in Milwaukee...

... Wisconsin has two such [fusion] centers: one operated by the Milwaukee Police Department and the other housed in a benign office park on Madison’s north side.  The equipment used by these centers was purchased with Department of Homeland Security grant money.  Moreover, federal funds underwrite about 20 percent of the Milwaukee fusion center’s budget.

These high-tech fusion centers can access one’s personal information from private sector data mining companies, such as ChoicePoint, in order to ascertain an individual’s financial transactions, book purchases, vehicles and properties owned, credit information, as well as names and addresses of relatives and neighbors.  Fusion centers also use software to track cellular telephones absent judicial oversight.  This technology enables an agent of the government to follow a cell phone from room-to-room within a particular building or structure....

...In Wisconsin, over 37 law enforcement agencies use automated license plate readers (ALPR), which are generally mounted on patrol vehicles, although some are placed at fixed locations.  These devices scan hundreds of license plates of passing vehicles each minute to check on the driver’s license status, possible warrants, or other fugitive data.  These devices also record the date, time, and location that the vehicle was scanned.  This information is then stored in various databases. ...

Nothing to see here.  Move on, subjects.

UPDATE:  What Spingola didn't mention (yet):

...The Hemisphere Project, a partnership between federal and local drug officials and AT&T that has not previously been reported, involves an extremely close association between the government and the telecommunications giant.

The government pays AT&T to place its employees in drug-fighting units around the country. Those employees sit alongside Drug Enforcement Administration agents and local detectives and supply them with the phone data from as far back as 1987....Ticker quoting NYT

There's no "secret court" involved here; it's all "administrative".  Whatever DEA wants, they get through non-judicial warrants.

1 comment:

Saint Revolution said...

What he wrote.

However, in the end, he's still on the wrong side.


He's a former cop.
He's former civil serpent.
Probably retired in his early 50s, probably complained about that, and he'll spend the rest of his life cushily writing his column while he's stealing from my and your back pocket via his bloated pension and bloated benefits received in retirement.

Relinquish his criminal pension, cross the line and turn in his fellow corrupt smarmy coward little bastards in blue, and then maybe, just maybe, I'll be able to stomach his hypocrisy without a massive infusion of Alka Seltzer.

In the end, a criminal calling out the criminals.