Like Clockwork -- Operators Spin Own Info Leak As A Government Problem

from the say-what-now? dept

Last night we posted the story of someone being able to obtain the mobile phone records of a national figure -- while noting that the outrage seemed misdirected. The complaint was about why the government isn't doing anything about this. As we've pointed out in the past, the sharing of this information is already illegal. The real question is how come the mobile operators are letting this info out in the first place. However, the operators obviously don't want this to reflect poorly on them, so they quickly trotted out head lobbyist Steve Largent to build on the original outrage... towards the government. He complains that it's the government's fault: "We urge the appropriate government authorities to take action necessary." Basically, he's urging them to clean up the mess the operators made themselves by not protecting this info in the first place. Of course, what makes this even more silly, is that this is the same industry that always complains that they should be allowed to self-regulate, while keeping the government out. So, now, when it's clearly a problem created by the operators being unable to protect their own customer's data, they go running to the government to save them?


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Jethro, Jan 13th, 2006 @ 2:06pm

    Steve Largent NFL Hall of Famer?

    Is this the Steve Largent who is a Hall of Fame WR for the Seattle Seahawks? And now he's shilling for the CTIA? Sad. Just Sad.

     

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  2.  
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    crystalattice (profile), Jan 13th, 2006 @ 2:16pm

    So kick 'em in the crotch

    If the mobile operators want the politicians to do something, then legislation should make the operators responsible for allowing the information to "escape" and prosecute them. As stated previously, the people doing the theft should be held accountable, but so should the mobile companies for leaving the info "laying around".

     

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  3.  
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    Tom Prodehl, Jan 13th, 2006 @ 3:19pm

    Standard of care

    It seems to me that the people whose data was improperly disseminated have a tort with the cell providers for negligence. Now, this isn't criminal but it does raise civil liability. Has some sharp lawyer already filed a class action?

     

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  4.  
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    Andrew Strasser, Jan 13th, 2006 @ 3:56pm

    Spectrum analyzer...

    You can lisen in on pretty much anyones phone conversation with the right equipment. For old analog systems a mere spectrum analyzer will not only allow to you listen but to speak as well. For newer version where digital comes into play you do need to unencode it, though I'm sure the source is real hard to find.

     

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  5.  
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    nuts, Jan 13th, 2006 @ 4:15pm

    Re: Spectrum analyzer...

    You must be an idiot if you think that with a spectrum analyzer you can talk to someone with a cell phone. Please wiki spectrum analyzer.

     

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  6.  
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    just a friend, Jan 13th, 2006 @ 8:05pm

    Of course, it's the gov't's responsibility!

    After the pharmaceutical companies made sure the Medicare Prescription Act included a specific prohibition of negotiating bulk pricing and the banks and credit card companies got them to change the bankruptcy laws because of their own lending practices - why shouldn't the rest of us jump on the bandwagon.

    The only thing that gives me comfort is the knowledge that this administration and majority party are fiscal conservatives in favor of smaller government. It gives me the peace of mind I need to sleep at night, knowing that the GOP has successfully reduced government regulation, freeing up valuable resources to fight the war on terrorism - can you imagine the manpower required to listen to all those warrantless wiretap tapes? I shudder to think what could have happened if it had gone the other way in 2000 - why, we might be handing out free condoms and medical marijuana and you just know homosexuals would be getting married right and left!

     

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  7.  
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    ccc, Jan 14th, 2006 @ 12:40am

    Re: Steve Largent NFL Hall of Famer?

    "Is this the Steve Largent who is a Hall of Fame WR for the Seattle Seahawks?"

    But that's the thing - it doesn't count unless the ref spots it and tosses a flag!

     

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  8.  
    identicon
    Dan, Jan 14th, 2006 @ 6:25am

    Re: Spectrum analyzer...

    Please wiki 'wisdom' and maybe you can find some.

    Anyone who has used a Cushman knows what he meant - and knows that it was possible to listen in. I did it many times back in the analog days.

     

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  9.  
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    Analog Roam, Jan 14th, 2006 @ 11:32am

    Re: Spectrum analyzer...


    You either "encode" or "decode", there is no such thing as unencode!

    I hope this clears up the matter for you.

    Analog Roam

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    Analog Roam, Jan 14th, 2006 @ 11:40am

    Re: Spectrum analyzer...


    "Please wiki 'wisdom' and maybe you can find some."
    You should try your own advice. The individual was commenting on the assertion being that one could "talk" to the cell phone by way of a spectrum analyzer as well as listen.
    Reading comprehension is a good thing, you should try it.
    AR

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 14th, 2006 @ 11:58am

    No Subject Given

    hey dumbasses! have any of u read A Clockwork Orange, by Anthony Burgess? read that before u start commenting on this stuff like the shitheads that u r.

    and you know what the fuck is up? i just deleted the whole wikipedia page on spectrum analyzers. so take that u dumb mother fuckers!!!! maybe this will shut u dumbasses up!! the stupid shit that's been pouring out of your anuses/mouths is fucking disgusting and needs to be flushed down the goddamn toilet!! that does NOT mean your hands, morons!! the TOILET!!

    george bush is fucking spying on us and u dumbasses are worrying about this fucking "information leak"??? get ur fucking priorities right, bitches!!! crawl out of ur little computer shells that maybe includes a stapler! ur liberties r getting fucked in the ass by george bush and ur standing there like, oh yeah, we like that, oh yeah!!! fuck u dumbasses!!!!!!!!!!

     

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  12.  
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    Sarcastic Asshole, Jan 14th, 2006 @ 1:25pm

    Re: No Subject Given

    I have absolutely no doubt WHATSOEVER that you are far too insignificant for our administration to spy on. The same applies to almost everybody who is complaining about it. So quit flattering yourself...it stinks in here...

     

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  13.  
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    Treslayr, Jan 14th, 2006 @ 1:34pm

    Re: Anonymous Coward

    LOL Wow!!! Am getting in the car now and going to BAM and buying "A Clockwork Orange". But before I do and perhaps garner some intelligence I can't help but say Bush is doing nothing else that previous administrations haven't done with the exception of bragging about it! Sadly as you point out in not so many words is the fact that we have known about it for years to the point that when we have verification we accept it and go on with our lives. We may occasionally bellyache and wait for the next destruction of our God given rights. Sadly it is all we know... Strange isn't it how we struggled and fought against communism most of our lives and we are hell bent on getting this nation to their (communists) way of thinking. I miss Ronald Reagan. He believed in the people of this country. Ah well... such is life... Now I will go and prepare myself for work tomorrow. Since my life has not been inconvienced enough for me to want to do something about it! Perhaps I will pay all my bills one day and as someone once put it I will go off the grid... Until then I truly enjoy reading your posts...
    Ps George Bush is an idiot. That is a fact.

     

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  14.  
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    None of your Concern, Jan 14th, 2006 @ 9:07pm

    Re: No Subject Given

    Please do this world a favor and either leanr proper grammer or just don;t post in forums that are meant ot be highly respected. I look at techdirt as a place where I learn and get an fair approach to todays topics. Dont post here unless you have an intelligent post or you feel you can better this conversation.

    No reply needed.

     

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  15.  
    identicon
    thecaptain, Jan 15th, 2006 @ 10:18am

    Re: No Subject Given

    wow you're a moron.

    the fact that they let you have access to the net (indeed society at large) makes me weep for human nature.

    you mother must be so proud..why don't you go upstairs now and hug her

     

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  16.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 15th, 2006 @ 3:17pm

    Re: Of course, it's the gov't's responsibility!

    The only thing that gives me comfort is the knowledge that this administration and majority party are fiscal conservatives in favor of smaller government. It gives me the peace of mind I need to sleep at night, knowing that the GOP has successfully reduced government

    You forgot your sarcasm tag.

    Because the reality is under the GOP, government spending has increased. Borrow and Spend - The GOP.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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