Re: Obama administration seeks warrantless access to email headers.

2010-07-30 Thread Stefan Kelm

Perry,


  The administration wants to add just four words -- electronic
  communication transactional records -- to a list of items that the
  law says the FBI may demand without a judge's approval. Government


Would that really make that much of a difference? In Germany,
at least, the so-called judge's approval often isn't worth
a penny, esp. wrt. phone surveillance. It simply is way too
easy to get such an approval, even afterwards.

Cheers,

Stefan.

--
Stefan Kelm   sk...@bfk.de
BFK edv-consulting GmbH   http://www.bfk.de/
Kriegsstrasse 100 Tel: +49-721-96201-1
D-76133 Karlsruhe Fax: +49-721-96201-99

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Re: Obama administration seeks warrantless access to email headers.

2010-07-30 Thread Perry E. Metzger
On Fri, 30 Jul 2010 09:38:44 +0200 Stefan Kelm sk...@bfk.de wrote:
 Perry,
 
The administration wants to add just four words -- electronic
communication transactional records -- to a list of items that
  the law says the FBI may demand without a judge's approval.
  Government
 
 Would that really make that much of a difference? In Germany,
 at least, the so-called judge's approval often isn't worth
 a penny, esp. wrt. phone surveillance. It simply is way too
 easy to get such an approval, even afterwards.

It is significantly harder here in the US. Equally importantly, it is
much simpler to determine what warrants were issued after the fact.

However, lets say you were right and there was no significant
impediment. It would be disturbing to see even the small protections
currently afforded removed without any apparent benefit to the
removal.

Perry
-- 
Perry E. Metzgerpe...@piermont.com

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Re: Obama administration seeks warrantless access to email headers.

2010-07-30 Thread Steven Bellovin

On Jul 30, 2010, at 3:58 08PM, Perry E. Metzger wrote:

 On Fri, 30 Jul 2010 09:38:44 +0200 Stefan Kelm sk...@bfk.de wrote:
 Perry,
 
  The administration wants to add just four words -- electronic
  communication transactional records -- to a list of items that
 the law says the FBI may demand without a judge's approval.
 Government
 
 Would that really make that much of a difference? In Germany,
 at least, the so-called judge's approval often isn't worth
 a penny, esp. wrt. phone surveillance. It simply is way too
 easy to get such an approval, even afterwards.
 
 It is significantly harder here in the US.

Actually, no, it isn't.  Transaction record access is not afforded the same 
protection as content.  I'll skip the detailed legal citations; the standard 
now for transactional records is 'if the governmental entity offers specific 
and articulable facts showing that there are reasonable grounds to believe that 
the contents of a wire or electronic communication, or the records or other 
information sought, are relevant and material to an ongoing criminal 
investigation.  This is much less than the probably cause and specificity 
standards for full-content wiretaps, which do enjoy very strong protection.

 Equally importantly, it is
 much simpler to determine what warrants were issued after the fact.
 

Not in this case.  Since the target of such an order is not necessarily the 
suspect, the fact of the information transfer may never be introduced in open 
court.  Nor is there a disclosure requirement here, the way there is for 
full-content wiretaps.


--Steve Bellovin, http://www.cs.columbia.edu/~smb





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Obama administration seeks warrantless access to email headers.

2010-07-29 Thread Perry E. Metzger
Quoting:

  The administration wants to add just four words -- electronic
  communication transactional records -- to a list of items that the
  law says the FBI may demand without a judge's approval. Government
  lawyers say this category of information includes the addresses to
  which an Internet user sends e-mail; the times and dates e-mail was
  sent and received; and possibly a user's browser history. It does not
  include, the lawyers hasten to point out, the content of e-mail or
  other Internet communication.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/07/28/AR2010072806141.html

-- 
Perry E. Metzgerpe...@piermont.com

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