Skip to comments.All phone calls in the US are recorded and accessible to the government, claims former FBI agent
Posted on 05/06/2013 10:46:41 AM PDT by kiryandil
A former FBI counterterrorism agent has hinted at a vast and intrusive surveillance network used by the U.S. government to monitor its own citizens.
Tim Clemente admitted as much when he appeared on CNN Wednesday night.
Discussing the Boston Marathon attack and past telephone conversations of Katherine Russell and her now deceased husband, suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev, Clemente said that those conversations would be available to investigators.
Clemente discussed the issue in this exchange with host Erin Burnett, as recorded by the CNN transcript...
(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...
Need to make an open source scrambler device for all my calls now....
I think that’s been pretty much open knowledge since the 1980’s. At least when the NSA used to come and recruit on our campus everyone was pretty much in agreement that that’s what they did. Allegedly they were only supposed to monitor calls going or coming from overseas. The Brits supposedly monitored the ones between two US points. We did the same for calls within the UK and then exchanged information.
I used to work for the Law Enforcement Relations department in a large cell phone company. All sorts of stuff is recorded and stored for at least seven years. This includes your location even if you are not using your phone (as long as it is turned on and you have a signal).
But they don’t record the content of voice calls without a warrant.
What would the memory requirements for this be?
I think they *want* us to think this is possible.
Remember Rules for Radicals #9- “The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself...Imagination and ego can dream up many more consequences than any activist....”
I personally don’t believe they could pull off a technological feat of that nature without some sort of major SNAFU that blows the entire telecom system.
Yep, data like call location and times are just a few bits and is already recorded for billing purposes so that would just be about data retention and access. The logistics of recording every single phone call and storing that would be unbelievably large. I think I may play a bit with it and figure out how much data storage is required for even a day’s worth of phone calls.
Or pick some agreed upon day when everybody will call a friend at 3:30PM Eastern Time, say the word “bomb” and hang-up...
Phone freedom day?
Text requires very little storage. Just convert the speech to text and assign it to phone numbers and times.
It’s also very easy to catalog and search in that format.
Except for college kids in Ohio. Don’t you worry.
(Thus saith The One.)
What else is new?
The Patriots will have to devise their own communication network to plan the revolution.
True, good point.
The problem is that you just KNOW that eventually it will be possible and even cheap to record all phone conversations. Then what? There is no business reason to record that data, therefore there should be no recording of that data without consent, either via the owner of the phone or a judge via a warrant.
Which brings us to my point in post 13. I would think that one could sue the phone company for recording your voice communication as an invasion of privacy.
I need to include “bless his heart” whenever speaking of hussein.
Front page news if Bush was still Prez, but now we only get relevant info from the foreign press.
I like the idea mentioned above, overwhelm the system with nonsense. Similar to a suggestion regarding 'key words' that get internet messages flagged, everyone post those words over and over to overwhelm the system.
Ecclesiastes 10:20 Furthermore, in your bedchamber do not curse a king, and in your sleeping rooms do not curse a rich man, for a bird of the heavens will carry the sound and the winged creature will make the matter known.
this is a hella’uva’ amt of phone calls- it boggles the mind
I like the idea mentioned above, overwhelm the system with nonsense. Similar to a suggestion regarding ‘key words’ that get internet messages flagged, everyone post those words over and over to overwhelm the system.
Bottom line is that unless there is a business need to record the content of voice calls, it is a violation of privacy to do so. Only a warrant allows it.
Where are these super servers storing all this information?
Really is there enough memory in the universe to store all the data?
If you have a smartphone, you can try this app
If anyone is assigned to listening to my phone calls, I feel sorry for the SOB. He must be the most bored man on the planet.
Imagine a room the size of a gymnasium filled with cabinets the size of refrigerators. In each cabinet are two hundred terabyte drives. How many calls and emails could be recorded and saved? What if there was more than one room like this? Supercomputers could be used to scan the phone calls and emails for certain key words. The vast majority of calls would be ignored by the software but calls that raised enough red flags could then be sent to an analyst who could listen to the call and determine the context of the pre-selected words to determine if an actual threat existed. I think it’s possible.
One was just built in Utah. I doubt we have the capability that the FBI agent claims.
“What would the memory requirements for this be?”
Whatever they are, this should handle it:
Wouldn’t that help out the bad guys?
Probably not unless it is done as a speech to text conversion. 3 Billion calls per day is a LOT of data. A years worth could be millions of Terabytes or more.
as someone that has created voip systems, i can tell you the audio can be stored @ about 20 kbps (and that would include encryption). the audio quality would be perfectly fine for conversational understanding (careful not to say ‘perfect’)
so the question of storage comes down to... how many minutes do Americans talk on the phone every year? this will lead you to the answer for whether or not it’s easily stored. at first blush, i’d say it’d be no problem if they designed it properly.
indexing it so you can properly pull up all the data related to a person of interest is then key. applying voice recognition to allow for the audio to be ‘parsed’ is also doable. this allows for a call to be flagged in real time and routed to the proper person
the show ‘person of interest’ only gets far fetched when ‘the machine’ starts thinking on its own. otherwise, all the data collection and references into the past is completely possible if not available today
i’m waiting for the day it’s allowed in courts... at which point a judge would bring up your calls over the passed 10 years and point out some behavior from a call years ago to hold against you.
Well... duh. Everyone had to already assume this.
Take heed what you say of your senior..
Be your word spoken or plain
Lest a bird of the air tell the matter
and so ye shall hear it again
“The storage capacity of the Utah Data Center will be measured in “zettabytes”. What exactly is a zettabyte? There are a thousand gigabytes in a terabyte; a thousand terabytes in a petabyte; a thousand petabytes in an exabyte; and a thousand exabytes in a zettabyte.”
That is why I used to pepper my conversations with words like "Clinton bombing," followed by, "I sure hope I just tripped a wire."
Maybe they have me down as a harmless crackpot.
My wife is on the phone 5 hrs. a day I bet they get tired of listening to her.
Voice compresses very well - it's not music. Gaps between words take almost nothing to store, and much of the dynamic range can get compressed away without losing the meaning of the content. Further, speech recognition can be used to create a searchable index so that they can find specific calls and then pull up the recording itself to review further.
Echelon, I think it's called.
Government has been building huge data storage systems for many years.
Bomb! Japan has just flashed Pearl Bailey, I mean...
See link in 22. 3 billion phone calls per day or almost 35 thousand per second.
Average length of phone call is 3 minutes according to this:
Just playing around.... So we have 35K calls per second * 3 minutes per call on an average is 105K Minutes of recording per second.
16.4kb per minute of storage * 105K minutes = 1,722,000kb per second (9.5GB per second)
9.5GB per second * 60 seconds per minute = 570GB per minute * 60 minutes per hour = 34 TB/Hour (rounded)
= 816 TB per day
= 25K TB per month
= 293K TB per year
It sounds like a lot but it isn’t as bad as I first thought.
IBM already has a 120 Petabyte drive that is public.
So under 300 of those drives for a year’s conversations.
Absolutely correct. Recall Clinton’s comments to Monica - he knew everything in this country was being monitored by another “friendly” Government.
I been telling people this for years.
This is why cell data encryption was crippled.
They justify it because the data is simply recorded and stored and it supposedly requires a warrant to make it available to an investigation.
The cell call in the Travon Martin case is recorded and stored.
Imagine all the juicy cell data that must exist for the Chicago area for the last decade or so....
There are cell phones available with unbreakable encryption... just not for the general public.
It is possible to modify a phone so that the CPU uses unbreakable public-key encryption... doing this would raise a large red flag over you.
I remember being told that the Soviets were listening in on phone conversations when I first got my security clearance back in the mid-80s.
I just figured that everything except face to face was public knowledge.
I would think part of the agreement would be the government would insulate the phone companies from lawsuits.
Besides, anything broadcast can be intercepted by a third party.
Besides, merely recording a signal isn't the same as eavesdropping, if you only passively record it and don't listen until you've decided to put a particular person under an electron microscope...
Entire skyscrapers in mid-town Manhattan are being stripped of walls, etc. and filled with just supercomputers. They are located in mid-town as that is where the server cables come into Manhattan, which gives them a microsecond of lead time on Wall Street.
The speaker was some math guy at a technology symposium talking about how algorithms are changing our lives, etc. Not some nutcase.
A good rule of thumb - the Wall Street Journal test. Are you prepared to have whatever you say over the phone or email (or however electronically transmitted) published on the front page of the Wall Street Journal. If not - don’t say or send it.
While I learned and practiced this in business, I’ve also tried to teach my kids this. There are a lot of people who are stupid enough to post things publicly and have paid the price - but even private communications are at risk.
Speaking as one who actually has been quoted by The Wall Street Journal, that’s a good rule of thumb!
doing a quick google, i see some mention an average of 459 minutes per month for cell users. assuming double that to cover all home and work phone calls. rounding it to about 1,000 minutes/month... or about 33 minutes per day (rounding to 2000 seconds/day)
assuming 250m people in the US may use a phone, that would put the total audio volume around 500 billion seconds per day
allowing for a quality recording around 20 kpbs... the storage requirement would be about 10.24 quadrillion bits/day or 1,192,092 gb/day
allowing for 2 recording stations per state, 100 stations total, the per station recording would be about 12,000 gb/day. averaging across a 16 hr day, this would put the hourly recording requirement per station around 745 gb/hour
assuming at least 32 active drives to record incoming data for each station, this would put the load per drive to about 23.3 gb/hour ... or about 398 mb/min.. or 6.8 mb/sec.
drives today can write in excess of 100 mb/sec
drives in such a system would need to be changed about once a day. once swapped out they would be placed in storage for future reference, if needed
applying real-time voice recognition to these audio streams would produce a text file. the text file would then be parsed and indexed for phrases then rated across a multitude of categories. if it rated high enough, it would automatically be routed to the attending agents.
the name of the text file would be recorded in a database along with the time, date, duration, and call_file_id. this id would be used to map the call participants identity record to the call. the person_id table would also map to another table to record location information.
with a small bit of work... you now have a system that knows what was said .. between whom (numerous people in a call)... and where each person was while the call was taking place.
with a little bit of algorithmic magic, i could easily find a second order of associates using such a database... identifying the larger group.
and yes, i could easily put this system together ... given the funding.
therefore, i have no doubt such a system exists
Or perhaps the best example being that lengthy and crystal clear recording of Newt Gingrich that was allegedly made by a pair of Democrat activists cruising along with a scanner that just happened to pick up Newt’s call and was hard-wired into a tape recorder. Yeah, RIIIIIIght.