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Cops Tracked Phones 1.3 Million Times In 2011

July 10, 2012 by  

Cops Tracked Phones 1.3 Million Times In 2011

Ever wonder if you have a reasonable expectation of privacy with regard to information on your cellphone?

Well, according to data compiled by Representative Edward Markey (D-Mass.), at least 1.3 million law enforcement requests were made last year for data from cellphone companies. Usually, the police were looking for things like text messages, location data, call logs and “cell tower dumps” (wireless carriers provide police with all of the phone numbers that connected to a particular cell tower in a period of time).

“We cannot allow privacy protections to be swept aside with the sweeping nature of these information requests, especially for innocent consumers,” Markey said in a statement. “Law enforcement agencies are looking for a needle, but what are they doing with the haystack? We need to know how law enforcement differentiates between records of innocent people, and those that are subjects of investigation, as well as how it handles, administers, and disposes of this information.”

The carriers reported that these requests have increased dramatically in recent years. This is likely because the mobile devices have become increasingly equipped with technology that allows them to log location data.

“Whether they realize it or not, Americans are carrying tracking devices with them wherever they go. Today’s new information makes it clear that law enforcement has carte blanche to follow the trail they leave behind,” Christopher Calabrese, a lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union, said in a statement.

Sam Rolley

Staff writer Sam Rolley began a career in journalism working for a small town newspaper while seeking a B.A. in English. After learning about many of the biases present in most modern newsrooms, Rolley became determined to find a position in journalism that would allow him to combat the unsavory image that the news industry has gained. He is dedicated to seeking the truth and exposing the lies disseminated by the mainstream media at the behest of their corporate masters, special interest groups and information gatekeepers.

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  • Ted Crawford

    Call Guinness Book of Records ! I find myself in agreement, not only with a Massachusetts Democrat, but also the ACLU ! That will most likely NEVER happen again!
    In reality I’m more agreeing with our Founders, like Jefferson ” A society that will trade a little Liberty for a little order will lose both and deserve neither “. Ben Franklin made a similar statement, ” Those who would give up essential Liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither Liberty nor safety ”
    I don’t understand what people who support this can be thinking, but perhaps Edmund Burke had the answer, ” The people never give up their Liberties, but under some delusion ” .

  • Steve E

    Give anyone a little power and they always abuse it.


      Roger that.
      Tell me about it.

  • chester

    A very good reason for using the cheapest phone and service available. The phone barely has digital access and NO gps capabilities, thus can be tracked only by tower dumps. Interesting there, as my service will connect with any available signal, so usually will be the closest tower, regardless of who uses it. CAN be tracked, but only with a great deal of difficulty and a goodly amount of time to sort through ALL the hits on all the towers around.

  • Liberterian

    We must be congnisent of this, as technogies grow, so does the ability of government and its sometimes unscrupulous agencies both law enforcement and private have an unending reach into our private lives. From cell phones, to GPS, to drones, hovering over us in the sky, tracking our every moves, science fiction? far from it. The new world order lurks in wait for our weakness, for our acquiescense. It’s only time that matters.

  • Jay

    Cops are nothing more then revenue-generating, revenue-collecting-useful-idiots!

  • Benjamin Fox

    I’m sure they follow my phone, too many unexplained thing happen on my phone and the company can’t explain it. I can, I think the government has to much power, are out of control, think islamist encluding the one in the WH hate America and it’s system, know they will kill me one day, one way or the other and nobody will care, that is okay when the truth is given in anyway, Internet, phone or personal contact, satan hates me, so the government he controls hates me, Gee, wonder why? His islamist children who follow him would kill me in a second, but would send women and children first, one on one gutless unless they have a gun and you a knife or a knife if you are unarmed, most deserve to be with their father satan but, God gets no joy from the death of the wicked. Until this Godless nation turns to Him, forget America, forget islam, forget the false religion’s, they won’t be in control soon.

    • BobfromSoCal

      Don’t worry Ben. None of these people can touch your soul; no matter how hard they try. You have eternity with God waiting for you. Doesn’t sound like all that much to worry about in the end.


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