Details On The Keystroke Logger Case... Was He Just A Whistleblower?

from the getting-more-interesting dept

Earlier this week, we wrote about a California man who was charged with wiretapping for using a keystroke logger on the machine. Security Focus (as they're good at doing) has many more details on the case, including an interview with the guy. It turns out, as people suggested in the comments here, the keystroke logger was a hardware dongle that fit between the computer and the keyboard connector. What's more interesting, though, is the guy's claim that he was just a whistleblower, and was collecting evidence of fraudulent practices at his firm. He even had met with California's Department of Insurance about the issue. However, no matter who he met with, it doesn't give him the right to break the law to prove his point and the Department of Insurance insists that they never told him to do anything illegal to collect evidence.

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  • identicon
    LittleW0lf, 25 Mar 2004 @ 1:48pm

    Was he a whistleblower?

    He may have been a whistleblower, but he violated federal law, with no Rules of Engagement and no get out of jail free card from the Department of Insurance. If I was in this position, I'd want something in writing from the Department of Insurance, and knowing that they, as a state firm had no legal right to grant me permission to violate federal laws, I would not have gotten one. There is a lot of difference from using your normal access to build a case and violating access in order to do so. If the state is really interested in investigating this, there are a number of ways to do so within the law.

    Is the law wrong? Probably, because it doesn't take into account very legal reasons for needing a keyboard sniffer. Is he a whistleblower? No doubt if he had information about bad things the company was doing. Was he justified in doing what he did? Absolutely not, it is still against the law and violates the secretary's privacy, for she could be writing personal email (such as telling another person at her company about an affair she is having, or other ultra-sensitive topics the guy had no right to listen to.)

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

  • identicon
    bernieS, 26 Mar 2004 @ 1:01pm

    Wiretap

    The Feds claimed their keystroke logger in the Scarfo case was *not* a
    wiretapping device, (they'd failed to get a wiretap warrant) yet they
    charged this guy with violating wiretapping laws for using a keylogger. It
    would be interesting to know what the differences are between these
    keyloggers are, and why using only one of them constitutes "wiretapping."

    -bernieS

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


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